Payroll Legal Alert

Summer doesn’t have to be the season of your discontent. You can swim through the summer season’s special demands on Payroll, including employees’ vacation requests, if you remember the Fair Labor Standards Act’s rules on working hours, calculating overtime when employees take a day off during the week and paying exempts.

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Summer means kids working in the family business. But beware. The Tax Court tossed a sole proprietor’s effort to deduct as wages payments made to her children. According to the court, there wasn’t any consistent correlation between the hours worked and the amounts recorded as wage payments.

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Eager young adults may be papering the company with summer hiring inquiries and job applications. These tips will help you cool the summer hiring process.

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Excepted benefits, such as limited-scope dental and vision benefits, aren’t subject to the Affordable Care Act’s requirements to provide affordable group coverage that provides minimum value. Proposed regulations would include wraparound coverage as a new category of excepted benefits. This coverage would be available to part-time employees and retirees. Under these regs, wraparound coverage would be permitted under a pilot program that begins no later than Dec. 31, 2017, and lasts for three years.

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Here’s your monthly guide to critical payroll due dates.

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Employees looking for a place to park their preteens during the summer should consider day camp. Tax break: Parents may defray day camp expenses, including expenses incurred for specialty camps, through the company’s dependent care assistance program, up to the $5,000 annual limit. Also covered: child care expenses for kids who stay home.

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Q: We have employees who change their W-4 forms on an almost weekly basis. This is becoming very burdensome. Management has asked whether there are any regulations that allow us to limit the number of W-4 changes employees can make a year. Also, how do you explain to full-time employees that they’re not exempt from paying federal income taxes?

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Q: Employees who aren’t on call, but who are called back to work to handle an emergency, are reimbursed for all of their traveling expenses. Must we include these reimbursements in their income and tax them?

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Federal and state courts don’t have to go out on too long a limb to allow employees to sue for their unpaid wages and to find corporate officers personally liable under state wage payment laws for failing to pay those wages. Two recent cases illustrate.

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Employers that use the standard mileage rate to value employees’ personal use of company vehicles are restricted to supplying vehicles of modest value.

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