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Frequently Asked Questions - General Topics


 

What is the new hire law?

State and federal law (409.2576 F.S. and 42 U.S.C. 653A) require all employers to report newly hired and re-hired employees to a state directory within 20-days of their start date.  Employers who submit reports via magnetic media (e.g., diskette) or electronically are required to submit the reports by two monthly transmissions, if necessary, not less than 12-days or more than 16-days apart.


Who must report?

All employers and/or labor organizations in the State of Florida must report new hire information.


Who must be reported?

Employers are required to report the following:
• New employees: Employers must report all employees who reside or work in the State of Florida to whom the employer anticipates paying earnings. Employees should be reported even if they are terminated prior to the employer fulfilling the new hire reporting requirement.
• Re-hires or re-called employees: Employers must report re-hires, or employees who return to work after being laid off, furloughed, separated, granted a leave without pay, or terminated from employment, after having been separated from such prior employment for at least 60 consecutive days.
• Temporary employees: Temporary agencies are responsible for reporting any employee who they hire to report for an assignment. Employees need to be reported only once; they do not need to be re-reported each time they report to a new client. They do need to be reported as a re-hire if the worker has a break in service or gap in wages from your company.


Are self-employed individuals exempt from reporting under this law?

No. 

Are independent contractors exempt from reporting under this law?

While we welcome Independent Contractors being reported, the law does not require employers to report them. The IRS provides guidelines on whether an individual is an independent contractor or an employee. If you have questions regarding this guideline, please contact the IRS.

Are labor unions and hiring halls exempt from reporting under this law?

No. Labor unions and hiring halls must report their own employees, meaning individuals who work for the labor union or hiring hall. If the labor union or hiring hall refers an individual for employment, it should not report the individual as a new hire. If a labor organization actually pays the individuals whom it refers (as opposed to having them paid by the person or entity to which they have been referred), the labor organization would be considered the "employer" and subject to the new hire reporting requirements.


Are domestic employess (e.g., maid, nurse, gardner) required to be reported?

Yes, an individual who is an employee for purposes of federal income tax withholding from wages is also an employee for new hire reporting purposes. If you need to determine if you should be paying federal income tax for your employees, please contact the IRS.

I already provide employee information on my Quarterly Wage reports. Why must I also report the employee as a new hire?

New hire information from the Quarterly Wage Reports becomes available two to six months after the date of hire. When you immediately report new hires, there is an improved chance of locating the individual while employed and the required child support action can be promptly taken. In addition, fraudulent receipt of unemployment, workers compensation, and welfare payments are detected through new hire reporting.

Are temporary agencies required to report their new hires for every assignment?

Yes. Temporary agencies are required to report their workers who sign a W-4 form and report to an assignment. Workers only need to be reported once; they do not need to be reported each time they report to a new client. If the worker has a break in service from your agency and a new W-4 form is required, then a new hire report is also needed.

Do I need to report terminated employees as well as new hires?

No. Only new hires and re-hires are required to be reported to the Florida New Hire Reporting Center. However, if the terminated employee had an Income Withholding Order for child support, the termination should be reported to the Child Support Program online at Employer Services.

Why is new hire reporting required?

In 1996, Congress enacted a law called the "Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act," or PRWORA, as part of Welfare Reform. This legislation created the requirement for employers in all 50 states to report their new hires and re-hires to a state directory.

What do I do if I need help with something?

Please call the Florida New Hire Reporting Center at (850) 656-3343, or toll-free from within Florida at (888) 854-4791 if you have questions about new hire reporting. Staff are available to answer your questions Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 5:00pm Eastern Time.

What are the benefits of reporting new hires electronically?

Reporting new hires electronically:

• Saves on paper, processing time, and postage
• Reduces errors
• Reduces rejected records due to unreadable or missing information
• Allows employers with multiple work sites to centralize their new hire reporting


Why did my organization receive a letter from the Florida New Hire Reporting Center stating we are not in compliance with the law?

The State of Florida works with employers to help ensure all new hires are reported. The Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) provides states a quarterly report containing information on employers who may not have reported all new hires as required. Using the quarterly report, we may mail notices to employers who may not be reporting new hires. The notice provides information on the legal requirements for new hire reporting and how to comply with the law.

Using a different FEIN to report new hires and quarterly wage information may also prompt this notice from us. If you have more than one FEIN, please make certain you use the same FEIN you use to report your quarterly wage information when reporting new hires. If you receive a non-compliance notice from our office and you believe you may be using multiple FEINs, please contact us.

We also monitor regular incoming new hire reports, and attempt to contact employers who appear to have lapsed or who have irregular new hire reporting histories. New hire reporting contributes to the well-being of many families, and assists with preventing fraudulent unemployment payments or welfare benefit payments.

Florida Statute 409.2576 and the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996, 42 U.S.C. 653A, requires all employers to report newly hired and re-hired employees to a state directory within 20 days of their hire date. New hire reporting is required by law in all 50 states, and has been mandatory since October 1998.  Pursuant to federal law, states have the option of imposing civil monetary penalties on employers who fail to report new hires. The fine can be up to $25 per newly hired employee, and if there is a conspiracy between the employer and employee not to report, the penalty can be up to $500 per newly hired employee.

If you have received a notice from the Florida New Hire Reporting Center which referenced a lack of compliance, or if you have additional questions about complying with the new hire reporting law, contact us.