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Archive for December, 2014

Increase in Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors

While the general federal minimum wage remains unchanged at $7.25 per hour, as announced earlier this year, the minimum wage for federal contractors will increase to $10.10 per hour as of January 1, 2015. This increase is pursuant to an Executive Order signed by President Obama and applies to all employers covered by the Service Contract Act or any employer who handles concessions and services in connection with Federal property or lands. The initial scope of this Order, however, will be limited; it will only apply to employees employed under new and replacement federal contracts and who would otherwise make under $10.10 an hour. Contracts that are in place prior to January 1, 2015 are not a

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FSA, HSA, and 401(k) Contribution Limits to Increase in 2015

Several of the most common benefit plans and account types have an increased allowance for contribution limits in 2015. The IRS has announced that it will raise the annual dollar limit on contributions for health care flexible spending accounts (FSAs), health savings accounts (HSAs), and 401(k) accounts based on cost of living adjustments (COLAs). These limits are reviewed annually by the IRS. Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)- The maximum allowed amount that an employee can contribute to an employer-sponsored health care FSA will be $2,550 in 2015 which is a $50 increase from the previously allowed amount of $2,500. Health Savings Accounts (HSA)- The maximum allowed contributio

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New Standard Mileage Rates Now Available; Business Rate to Rise in 2015

IR-2014-114, Dec. 10, 2014 - Content directly from the IRS website. WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today issued the 2015 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes. Beginning on Jan. 1, 2015, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car, van, pickup or panel truck will be: 57.5 cents per mile for business miles driven, up from 56 cents in 2014 23 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, down half a cent from 2014 14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations The standard mileage rate for business is based on an annual study of the fi

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Automating Corporate Timekeeping And Payroll

Four Ways Automated Timekeeping Helps Your Company Work At Maximum Capacity Every business owner recognizes that lost time equates to lost money. Successful entrepreneurs are constantly endeavoring to find ways to streamline operations and make their processes as efficient as possible to minimize efforts and maximize revenues. While countless executives focus on their production processes (and rightfully so), many overlook equally invaluable ways to streamline efforts in their back office operations. A great place to start when looking to make your back office as efficient as possible? Consider implementing automated timekeeping as part of your HR/payroll management process. What You Can Exp

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2015 Labor Laws: Coming Soon to a Courthouse Near You

With the Affordable Care Act, midterm elections, and other scheduled labor law changes, there are several new major pieces of legislation heading our way in 2015. Below is a summary of some of the key labor laws and trends to keep in mind as we approach 2015: 1. The Employer Mandate - The Employer Mandate is the provision in the Affordable Care Act that requires all employers with 50 or more full time equivalent employees to offer a certain level of health insurance coverage at an affordable rate to all full time employees or face a penalty.  An Employer Mandate penalty is triggered if the company fails to comply with the requirements and at least one full‐time employee of a covered empl

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Do You Reimburse Employees For Individual Health Insurance?

If you do, please read this important information.  The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will begin impacting employers of all sizes with additional changes in just another week.  One of the lesser known regulations that will impact employers relates to offering reimbursements to employees to purchase individual health insurance outside of a company plan.  The IRS issued guidance last year (Notice 2013-54) stating that tax-free employer payment arrangements are considered group health plans subject to the ACA restrictions. With a few minor exceptions, these plans fail to meet ACA requirements for a variety of reasons, the most important being that group health plans that are used to purchase

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Is It Time to Reconsider Performance Appraisals?

Performance appraisals are a staple of performance management. Most companies — 88% of U.S. employers — conduct them at least once a year, reports the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). Even so, performance appraisals are typically less productive than they could be for employees and supervisors. Room for improvement A 2014 SHRM survey found that a majority of HR professionals believe their performance management processes could be better. In the survey of 400 U.S. HR professionals, only 2% gave their organizations an A grade for their method of handling performance management. The majority — 53% — gave their organization a grade between C+ and B, followed by 21% who rat

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Safety & Health in the Workplace: Pandemic Planning

With increased media coverage about the Ebola outbreak, employers may wonder what workplace action should be taken. This is also a good time to discuss keeping your workplace germ free as the flu season gets into full force. Keep in mind that the likelihood of Ebola affecting your workplace may be small, so consider this a good time to revisit pandemic protocols.  Chances are you will have a much better chance of flu and cold germs around and the protocols are virtually the same. Employers are encouraged to consider the following controls to help protect the workplace: Develop policies that encourage ill workers to stay at home without fear of reprisal. Understand state and federal leave

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Make W2 Processing Simple

W2 Explanation: Breaking Down The 123s And ABCs Of This Important Tax Form Here at The Payroll Company, we understand that the W2 form can overwhelm employees. Every year we consult with our clients and their staff to deliver a thorough W2 explanation that streamlines the process and gives our partners the information that they need before they file their taxes. If you're already dreading your W2 processing this year, read on -- understanding some of the many 123s and ABCs of this important tax form can make the process as simple as possible for you. Our W2 Explanation Can Break Down The (Many!) Boxes On This Form: Yes, there are a lot of boxes to read through on your W2 form; at The Payro

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