Regulations

IRS Issues WOTC Directive on When to Apply a Certification

2 minute read: The IRS has issued a new directive that should make it easier for employers administering the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) program to receive tax credits in the year employer certifications are issued. The issuance of WOTC certifications by State Workforce Agencies are often delayed and employers sometimes don’t receive them until…

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Hiring People with Disabilities Can Make a Difference

Hiring People with Disabilities Can Make a Difference

July 26 was the 29th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but even after all this time, employers are still having difficulty meeting the requirements of the law. For example, take the recently settled disability discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against multination retail giant…

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2018 WOTC Statistics Demonstrate Benefits to Employers

2018 WOTC Statistics Demonstrate Benefits to Employers

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued statistics for 2018 that highlight how much employers can benefit from participating in the federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) program. According to the DOL, employers in 2018 obtained 2.2 million WOTC certifications. This represents billions of dollars in federal tax credits. Employers particularly benefited from hiring…

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Legislation Proposes Extending WOTC 

Legislation Proposes Extending WOTC

Congress is considering bills that would again extend the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) through December 31, 2020. The U.S. House of Representatives is considering bill H.R. 3301, which extends several expired or expiring tax breaks through 2020, including WOTC. U.S. Senate bill S. 978 and House bill H.R. 2213. also have been introduced in…

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Workplace Enhancements for Improving Productivity

Workplace Enhancements for Improving Productivity

Your once inspired company is suddenly stuck in a non-stop lag, where employees’ productivity is at an all-time low. How does it happen? It could be the result of several factors. Perhaps employees have individual situations outside of work that are bleeding into their work hours or the monotony of the job has made them…

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Increase Your WOTC Certifications with A Two-Step Process

Increase Your WOTC Certifications with A Two-Step Process

The use of an online screening portal for federal Work Opportunity Tax Credits (WOTC) certifications is becoming more common. The process is fast and convenient. However, if organizations really want to maximize their WOTC certifications, they will want to incorporate a personalized screening experience for their candidates in addition to an online screening portal. It’s…

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Florida Launches Revamped Online WOTC Portal

Florida Launches Revamped Online WOTC Portal

The launch of a revamped online platform by the state of Florida is making it easier for employers to obtain tax credits through the federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit. Employers can earn up to $9,600 per qualified hire through the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) program. The revamped online platform posed a challenge for the…

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Organizations Should Prepare for I-9 Enforcement

Organizations Should Prepare for I-9 Enforcement

If your organization isn’t keeping I-9 records for all of your active workforce, you may have a problem if the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) comes to audit your organization. The likelihood of an audit has increased with the renewed emphasis on worksite enforcement by ICE as part of the continued focus on immigration…

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EEOC Settlement Sets Precedent for Service Dog Use in Workplace

Chalk one up for man’s best friend and military veterans. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has settled a disability discrimination and retaliation lawsuit with a North American trucking company in what is a groundbreaking precedent for the use of service dogs and other emotional support animals on the job by persons with emotional disabilities.…

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This Trifecta of WOTC Services Will Increase Your Certifications

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The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) is a federal tax credit available to employers who hire individuals from specific target groups. Any business can earn tax credits by hiring individuals who fit one of the program’s target groups such as veterans, disabled persons and persons receiving government assistance. Employers can earn anywhere from $1,200 to…

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DOL Proposes New Rule Clarifying FLSA Regulations

DOL Proposes New Rule Clarifying FLSA Regulations

For the first time in over 50 years, the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division has proposed a new rule to clarify the regular earning rate requirements under section 7(e) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Under the FLSA, employers are required to provide overtime pay of at least one and…

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Hire Vets Through WOTC

Hire Vets Through WOTC

The HIRE Vets Medallion Program is an award from the U.S. Secretary of Labor that recognizes employer efforts to recruit, employ, and retain veterans. Employers can apply for the HIRE Vets Medallion Award as of January 31, 2019 and stand out for their employment practices. Additionally, employers can reap the benefits of tax incentives generated…

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Start Using WOTC to Help Your Business

Start Using WOTC to Help Your Business

Over $1 billion in tax credits are claimed annually through the federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit program (WOTC). Through WOTC, run by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), federal tax credits of up to $9,600 per employee are available to employers for hiring individuals from target groups that consistently faced barriers to employment. Below are…

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Federal Agencies to Crack Down on Employers Using Foreign Hires

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The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued a press release disclosing the recently formed interagency partnership between the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Civil Rights Division Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER) and the DOL’s Employment and Training Administration, Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) to stop discrimination against U.S. workers and to help…

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Employers Should be Prepared For Increased I-9 Enforcement in 2019

Employers Should be Prepared For Increased I-9 Enforcement in 2019

It’s evident that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has been active this past year. Expect that trend to continue in 2019 based on U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s proposed budget for 2019. In the Department of Homeland Security’s 2019 FY Budget Summary, a number of additions have been proposed to continue the enforcement of…

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OFCCP Issues Contract Requirement Exemptions for Alaskan Earthquake and California Wildfires

OFCCP Issues Contract Requirement Exemptions for Alaskan Earthquake and California Wildfires

The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has issued additional temporary contracting requirement exemptions for new contracts following the aftermath of the Alaskan Earthquake and California Wildfires. The exemptions state that new federal contractors and subcontractors will be exempt from having to develop written affirmative action programs under Executive…

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IRS Issues WOTC Deadline Extension in Hurricanes Aftermath

IRS Issues WOTC Deadline Extension in Hurricanes Aftermath

This year’s hurricane season was a traumatic one, especially for those in the southern Atlantic region. Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia were all hit with monster storms. In the aftermath of Hurricane Florence and Michael, the IRS has granted tax relief for Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) certification requests. For those affected…

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Honor Military Veterans By Hiring Them

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Veteran’s Day is a time to take stock of how fortunate we are to live in a country with extensive freedoms, and how fortunate we are to have brave men and women who, generation after generation, step forward to willingly put their lives on the line to protect those freedoms for all of us. While…

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DOL’s PAID Extended for 6 Months

DOL’s PAID Extended for 6 Months

U.S. Department of Labor has extended the Payroll Audit Independent Determination (PAID) pilot program for another six months. The program, which launched in March and was scheduled to conclude last month, will now be extended until April 2019, in hopes of drawing greater participation. The PAID pilot program allows an employer to review Wage and…

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IRS Issues Extension to Receive Tax Credits for Empowerment Zones

IRS Issues Extension to Receive Tax Credits for Empowerment Zones

Employers with employees living in designated empowerment zones have another opportunity to apply for Work Opportunity Tax Credits (WOTC). The IRS recently announced that tax credits for WOTC Target Group D, which consists of individuals ages 18-39 who when hired are residents of an empowerment zone, has been extended. In Notice 2018-47, employers will now…

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An ICE Storm in July

An ICE Storm in July

The recent announcement from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) should have gotten the attention of employers. It illustrates how seriously ICE is in carrying out its commitment to increase the number of I-9 audits in an effort to create a culture of compliance among employers. In a press release issued last week, ICE shared…

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Don’t Let Applicant Tracking Systems Trip Up Regulatory Compliance

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From restaurant industries to biopharmaceuticals, employers from all types of industries have implemented applicant tracking systems (ATS) for screening and hiring candidates. Some of the advantages of an ATS include central storage, application throttle, and screening capabilities. These benefits don’t come without potential complications, however. An ATS may lead to a number of costly errors…

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New Privacy Law Brings Major Changes to California Businesses

New Privacy Law Brings Major Changes to California Businesses

AB 375 is the result of a compromise between the Democrats in the California legislature and consumer privacy advocates led by real-estate mogul Alistair Mactaggart. Mactaggart and his organization, Californians for Consumer Privacy (CCP), sponsored a sweeping ballot initiative aimed at giving consumers the right to know what personal information is collected about them and…

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Nevada’s WOTC Process Goes Electronic

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Good news from the state of Nevada for employers anxious to hire and get paid for doing it. The state has taken the initiative to improve its process for handling the federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), which provides tax incentives for employers to hire from specific groups of individuals targeted by the federal program,…

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Federal Agencies Amping Up U.S. Worker Protections

Federal Agencies Amping Up U.S. Worker Protections

A recent federal interagency agreement is looking to identify potential violations by employers of statutes and regulations governing the processes for seeking employment-based immigrant and non-immigrant visas. Under a recent memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that “a framework has been…

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ICE Age: Raids are Expanding

Since the Trump administration took office, a significant focus has been placed on enforcement of immigration laws by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Acting ICE director Tom Homan advised in 2017 that immigration raids were likely to quintuple in 2018, with both undocumented workers and the places that employ them as targets. That was…

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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Current Arbitration Processes

In Epic Systems v. Lewis, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a major ruling for employers that will significantly limit the claims against them brought by employees. At issue was the legality of agreements between employers and employees that restrict the resolution of disputes to single employee arbitration. The Court ruled 5-4 that such agreements are…

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Claim More Tax Credits with WOTC Program

Claim More Tax Credits with WOTC Program

The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) program has sometimes been viewed with a negative stigma. The reality is that candidates eligible for the WOTC certification are hired every day to work in most industries, ranging from restaurants to retail to banking. It’s also true that one in five of job candidates are eligible for WOTC…

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Oregon’s New Scheduling Law Starts July 1

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Oregon is the first state to adopt a predictive scheduling law statewide for the retail, food services, and hospitality industries that will go into effect on July 1. S.B. 828, also known as the Fair Work Week Act, pertains to food service, hospitality, and retail establishments that have operations in Oregon and have at least…

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Franchisees May Need to Rethink Their Treatment of Franchise Workers

The National Labor Board (NLRB) is divided on a case involving McDonald’s and it’s workers viewed by many as one of the most consequential labor law precedents of the past decade.. Should corporate McDonald’s (the franchisor) and other similar corporations be liable for the treatment of workers at franchise locations? The answer, once seemingly clear,…

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WOTC Capture Just Got Easier for Texas, Nevada, and Delaware

The Work-Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) is a credit that many employers should be capturing if they aren’t already doing so. Employers can receive credits for hiring and retaining candidates from specific target groups, such as convicted felons, veterans, and those on government assistance programs such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The process for obtaining WOTC…

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DOL Gives Businesses Second Opportunity For WOTC Job Tax Credits

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The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has rethought its stance on Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) applications submitted in 2014 through 2016 that were rejected for WOTC certification by State Work Agencies (SWAs). The DOL, in Training and Employment Guidance Letter No. 07-17, said that the Social Security Administration (SSA) would be re-evaluating Target Group…

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Use Automated HR to Capitalize on WOTC Employment Tax Credits

Use Automated HR to Capitalize on WOTC Employment Tax Credits

The hiring and onboarding of an employee is often times a time-consuming process for both applicants and employers. Tax-credit screening, document collection, background checks, and employment verification, are all components that take up a lot of time, but they don’t have to with today’s technology. Moving to an automated HR process for onboarding will save…

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CEO Pay Ratio Disclosures Prompt Reaction

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The first of a series of disclosures from public companies comparing CEO pay to that of employees are out as companies work to comply with the CEO pay ratio disclosure rules that are part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. The rule requires public companies to disclose the pay…

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New Federal Tax Credit Promotes Paid Family and Medical Leave

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Employers have access to a new federal tax credit starting this year. The new Employer Credit for Paid Family and Medical Leave Tax Credit provides employers an incentive to provide paid family and medical leave to their employees through 2019. In order to claim the credit, an employer must first have a qualifying written plan,…

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WOTC Survives Tax Reform Legislation

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There were many changes to tax law in the recent tax reform legislation passed by Congress in December last year. One important program remained untouched, however, the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), which will remain in place until at least the end of 2019. The WOTC is a voluntary federal tax credit administered by the…

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EEOC Says Denying Use of Service Dog Violates ADA

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The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is pursuing a North American trucking company in what could be a groundbreaking case on the use of service dogs and other emotional support animals on the job by persons with emotional disabilities. CRST Expedited Inc. is part of CRST International, one of the nation’s largest transportation companies providing…

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Maryland Becomes Ninth State to Require Paid Sick Leave

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Starting this month, Maryland employers will be dealing with a new law addressing paid sick leave or safe leave. Called the Healthy Working Families Act (HWFA), the new law enables Maryland employees to have paid sick leave—for their physical health, mental health, injury, sick covered family members, maternity/paternity leave, as well as leave for violence…

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Should Your Company Participate in the ICE IMAGE Program?

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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has stepped up its efforts to raid U.S. employers who hire undocumented workers. The results of these raids can be potential criminal prosecution of employers who knowingly hire undocumented workers in addition to prosecution of the workers themselves as well as bad media coverage. However, ICE is also promoting…

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U.S. DOL Provides New Guidance on Interns

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Internships can provide valuable working experiences for college and high school students. Talented students serving as interns can also bring enthusiasm and savvy insights into your workplace, particularly as some of us grapple with ever-evolving technology that young people seem to be facile with well before adults. However, it’s important to remember that students serving…

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New North Carolina Law Reminder to Avoid Worker Misclassification

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On December 31, 2017, the North Carolina Employee Fair Classification Act (EFCA) took effect. The new law allows for heightened investigations into those employers that are allegedly misclassifying their workers as independent contractors rather than as employees. The law allows workers to report potential job misclassification cases to a new division within the North Carolina…

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Pay Ratios Are on Investors’ Minds

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Public companies will be required to provide disclosure of their pay ratios in registration statements, proxy and information statements, and annual reports that will be issued this year. How did we get here? A little over two years ago, the SEC adopted a rule that requires public companies to reveal the ratio of the compensation…

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