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Learn Employer Duties

Employers have responsibilities toward their employees relating to reporting new hires, payroll and withholding taxes, safety and fair employment practices. These requirements are set by federal and state law for the protection of employees.



Choose a type from this list to return a list of responsibilities below.

New Employee Requirements

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Take these steps when a new employee is hired:

  • Have the employee complete the Citizenship and Immigration Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification.  Examine the employee's identification documents and record the identifying information.  Keep completed I-9 forms on file for examination by the USCIS upon request.
  • Have the employee complete a W-4 form to establish the basis for payroll, indicating the number of dependents and any additional federal tax the employee wishes to have withheld.
  • If the employee is eligible for advance earned income credit, have the employee complete a W-5 Form.  To be eligible, the employee must have qualifying dependent children and have total family income of less than a specific maximum.  Income limits are specified on the form.

  • Report information about your new or rehired employees through the West Virginia New Hire Reporting System within 14 days of the hire/rehire date. Online reporting is quick and easy at www.wv-newhire.com.  A form for mailing or faxing your report is also available by calling the Center at 1-877-625-4669.  This report is required by West Virginia law.
 

Tax Withholding and Reporting

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Calculate, prepare withholding forms and report withholding carefully and promptly.

  • Use the IRS withholding tables to calculate your withholding requirements for federal taxes, Social Security and Medicare.
  • Use the IRS Employer's Tax Guide (Circular E, Publication 15) for detailed information about employer duties relating to the IRS.  For additional help, see the IRS Employer's Supplemental Tax Guide (Publication 15a) .
  • Prepare IRS Form 941 Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return.  This return must be filed by all employers who pay wages subject to income tax withholding.  This return must be filed by the last day of the month that follows the end of the quarter.
  • Prepare deposit of income tax withheld (including employer and employee Social Security and Medicare taxes). These may be required semi-weekly, monthly or quarterly. See IRS Publication15, Circular E for details.
  • Effective January 1, 2009, the due dates for Withholding returns (WV/IT-101A and WV/IT-101Q) is the last day of the month following the close of the year or quarter. Withholding payments are to be remitted separately from returns using WV/IT-101V and are due by the 15th of the month following the close of the month or year (for annual filers). For additional information, see Administrative Notice 2009-02 located at www.wvtax.gov.
  • Prepare a W2 Form (Wage and Tax Statement) for each employee for the calendar year and give that form to the employee no later than January 31.  This is a multi-part form that must be obtained from the IRS, and is often available at post offices or state tax offices.
  • Prepare a W3 Form (transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements) summarizing all of the W2 forms you will file with the IRS.  This is also a multi-part form obtained from the IRS or other source.
  • See the IRS publication Instructions for W2 and W3 Forms for help on preparing these forms.
  • Prepare WVIT-103 West Virginia Annual Income Tax Withheld Reconciliation for all employees and file on or before February 28, along with the 'state' copy of the W2 (part of the multi-part W2 form).
 

Employer Postings and Notifications

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Federal laws administered by the Department of Labor (USDOL) require postings to notify employers of their rights.  Some of these requirements apply only to businesses with more than a certain number of employees or businesses with employees who are covered by the requirements.

  • General information about posting requirements is available on the USDOL E-law system.
  • Find out details at USDOL Workplace Poster Requirements for Small Businesses and Other Employers .
  • Posters required in most workplaces include:
    • Job Safety and Health Protection,
    • Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law,
    • Federal Minimum Wage, and
    • Your Rights Under the Family and Medical Leave Act.
  • Posters required in special circumstances include:
    • Notice to Workers with Disabilities Paid at Special Minimum Wages,
    • Notice: Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act,
    • Notice to Employees Working on Federal or Federally Financed Construction Projects,
    • Notice: Employee Polygraph Protection Act, and
    • Notice to Employees Working on Government Contracts.

State law also requires postings by employers.

  • Every liable employer is required by law to display prominently in each business establishment a poster, Notice to Employees, Unemployment Compensation Benefits, Form WVUC-B-59.  The poster contains information about insured workers' rights and duties under the West Virginia Unemployment Compensation Law.
  • Every employer is required to post the WV Minimum Wage/Maximum Hours notice.
 

Labor Requirements and Assistance

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State laws administered by the WV Division of Labor sets requirements for wage rates. The division also provides assistance with compliance with federal safety and health requirements (OSHA).

  • The West Virginia Division of Labor offers an on-site consultation program, which provides free analysis and advice on eliminating workplace hazards.
  • The Division of Labor provides information on the West Virginia Wage Payment and Collection Act, which sets requirements relating to wage payments.
  • Wage rates for specific types of work, including contruction-related trades, heavy construction and highway construction trades are established annually on prevailing wages on a county by county basis.  These wage rates are filed with the Secretary of State Administrative Law Division.
 

Unemployment Compensation Requirements

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Both federal and state unemployment compensation coverage requirements apply to workers who are classified as employees.  Owners are not eligible for unemployment coverage.

  • Basic business registration includes registration with the West Virginia Bureau of Employment Programs, Unemployment Compensation Division, providing the new business indicates it will have employees.  The UC Division will use the information provided in the registration to determine whether the employer is liable for unemployment compensation coverage.
  • The WVBEP Employer Handbook provides information about laws, rules, claims and reporting relating to unemployment.
  • When an employer is determined to be liable, or applies for and is approved for voluntary coverage, the Division issues an Employer's Certificate of Registration, Form WVUC-A-29 and assigns the employer a ten-digit account number.  The employer should enter this 10-digit number on all correspondence with the Division and on unemployment compensation forms.
  • The initial rate for unemployment compensation depends on the type of business and the history of unemployment claims for that type of business. After a period of time, experience factors will be included in the rate, and the rate can fall or rise depending on the specific employer's history of workers filing unemployment compensation claims.  The rate is applied to payroll to determine the amount.
  • A employer that is not liable for coverage or who wishes to insure workers who are not engaged in 'employment' as defined in the Unemployment Compensation Law may elect voluntary coverage by completing Form WVUC-A-33, Voluntary Election to Become an Employer. If approved, voluntary coverage remains in effect at least two calendar years, the year it is elected and the following year.
  • If a business starts with no employees and adds employees later, that business must contact the UC Division and apply for an account.
  • Forms for filing unemployment compensation are mailed to employers from the Unemployment Compensation Division.  Electronic filing options are also available.
  • Prepare and file West Virginia Unemployment Compensation quarterly Contribution Report WVUC-A-154 and Wage Report WVUC-A-154-A on or before the last day of the month following the end of a calendar quarter.
 

Workers' Compensation Requirements

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State law requires employers to obtain workers' compensation coverage for employees in case of workplace injury.  As part of the move toward complete privatization of this system, beginning January 1, 2006 employers will purchase worker's compensation insurance from the new mutual insurance company, BrickStreet Insurance.

  • Basic business registration for a new or acquired business no longer include includes registration for worker's compensation coverage. The employer must apply directly to the private carrier for this insurance coverage.
  • Eligible employers who wish to self-insure their employees injury claims may register under 'Guaranteed Cost and Self Insurance Coverage' provisions.  View information and application forms about self insurance.
  • All new businesses with employees are required to have one of the two types of coverage.
 
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