2015 State Unemployment Tax Rate Season Preparation
As November quickly approaches, many more jurisdictions utilizing a calendar year rate will join Oklahoma and Wisconsin in issuing 2015 state unemployment insurance (SUI) tax rates. This marks the official beginning of the 2015 “rate season”. It is important for those charged with administering and managing SU tax rates to be prepared for the issuance of tax rates in order to reduce risk, increase efficiency, and maximize savings opportunities.
Preparing for the 2015 Rate Season
The first step in preparing for the 2015 rate season is identifying an owner who will be responsible for managing the various aspects of rate season. Having one individual owner helps to increase efficiency and reduce the possibility of missing a deadline or potential saving opportunity. As part of being the process owner, this designated individual should also be receiving all state rate notices and state correspondence during rate season.
The next step is to gather a complete and current data set. A complete data set allows for more efficient and effective administration of all aspects of rate season, and prevents the use of estimates. The data set includes:
- Current legal entity structure, including legal entity names, FEINs, and SUI account numbers
- Q3 2012 – Q2 2014 quarterly contribution reports
- 2013 – 2014 state unemployment tax rate notices
- 2012 – 2014 benefit charge statements
- State mail dates and deadlines (see example TABLE)
Once all data has been gathered, a final step is reviewing any completed and pending merger, acquisition, reorganization, and divestiture activity to analyze the impact of such activity on SUI tax rates.
Actions Required During 2015 Rate Season
The process owner should prepare a tracker and schedule for the following tasks:
- Receipt of all SUI rate notices
- Unemployment tax rate verifications: Assures that an employer’s assigned SUI tax rate has been properly assigned using quarterly contribution reports and benefit charge statements. If improper rate has been assigned, protest and resolve the discrepancy.
- Voluntary contribution planning: Assesses potential savings associated with making voluntary contributions and, if profitable, making sure the payment is made and verifying the tax rate once revised.
- Joint and common rating analysis: Review all possible tax rate combinations, for employers with multiple operating entities within a state that allows for joint accounts, for potential savings. File the necessary compliance paperwork, wait for a revised rate notice, and make sure the rate is properly calculated.
- Forecasting of tax rates that will not be received until 2015 to allow for creation of a more accurate CY 2015 budget
The management of 2015 rate season will continue through March of 2015, when the final states issue their 2015 tax rate notices. To receive a complementary Voluntary Contribution analysis or to learn more about your 2015 tax rates, please contact Pete Krieshok at (314) 214-7325 or via email at pete.krieshok@Equifax.com.
These services mentioned above are provided through the Equifax Workforce Solutions UC contract. Current clients can contact their account manager to learn more.
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