Payroll Legal Alert

So-called excepted benefits—limited-scope dental and vision benefits—are exempt from the Affordable Care Act’s requirements to provide affordable group coverage that provides minimum value. Final ACA regulations modify those benefits, and add long-term care benefits and certain employee assistance plans into the excepted benefits category.

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This is your monthly guide to critical payroll due dates.

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It’s officially Payroll crunch time. The Social Security Administration is cracking down on employers that submit W-2/W-3 forms with errors … but you already have everything organized and ready to go, right?

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Q: A terminating employee is requesting an early W-2. He’s also requesting that Payroll provide him with written verification that he hit the 2014 Social Security taxable wage base, even though his W-2 clearly shows this in Box 3. He insists that he doesn’t need to restart paying Social Security taxes with his new employer, since he maxed out for 2014. Is he correct?

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The Department of Labor (DOL) is closing out the year with a bang. It’s issued final regulations increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour for employees who work on new or renewed federal contracts and has postponed enforcement action on its final regulations governing home care ­workers.

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States have their own W-2 e-filing thresholds and specifications. This chart summarizes those requirements.

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If you’re shopping around for group health benefits on the SHOP, don’t forget to factor in the value of the small business health care credit when evaluating the cost of a group policy.

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Increases to the personal exemption amount, which doubles as the annual withholding allowance amount, are based on increases to the August Consumer Price Index. Here are the crucial payroll figures you need now.

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Q: HR’s latest benefit is a computer purchase program, which is an interest-free loan. The guidelines state its purpose is to encourage employees to purchase up-to-date equipment, increase their comfort level with technology and extend those educational and personal benefits to their families. Employees can borrow up to $1,500, payable over 24 months via payroll deductions. We’re concerned with two aspects of this program …

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The IRS has pegged 317 projects in its annual Priority Guidance Plan, commonly called the business plan. While that’s down from last year’s 324 projects, many of them will have a substantial impact on your payroll operations.

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