Chapter 1 Employer Taxes and Wage Reporting
Section 1 - Responsibilities of all Employers
For Each Worker
For Each Pay Period
Length of Time to Keep Records
The New Jersey Unemployment Compensation Law places certain responsibilities on all individuals, groups of individuals, firms and organizations that employ one or more persons on a permanent, temporary or part-time basis, whether or not such employers are required to pay unemployment insurance taxes.
Whether or not you are an employer subject to the Unemployment Compensation Law, you are required to give any information requested by the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development concerning wages paid to an employee or former employee, and/or the reason why such person is no longer working for you.
So that the Department may ascertain which employers are liable for contributions, verify the correctness of amounts paid as contributions by each employer, and compute the amount and duration of benefits to which eligible workers are entitled, all employing units are required to keep the following records:
1. Full name, address and Social Security number
Verification of workers’ Social Security numbers. As the employer, you are required to report a valid Social Security number for all your employees in New Jersey [per N.J.A.C. 12:16-2.2 (a)1]. An individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) issued by the Internal Revenue Service is not acceptable. It is the employer's responsibility to assure that employees have valid Social Security numbers.
We recommend that employers validate Social Security numbers using either the Social Security Administration's Social Security Number Verification Service or U.S. Citizenship and Immigration service's E-Verify. A photocopy of the employee's Social Security card is no longer considered proof of a valid Social Security number.
Title 12 of the New Jersey Administrative Code requires that employers identify covered workers in accordance with the following steps:
(a) Each employer shall ascertain the worker’s Social Security account number. The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development recommends employers inspect the worker’s original Social Security card when verifying the Social Security number. We also recommend that you keep a photocopy of the Social Security card for your records, if possible.
(b) If a new employee does not have an original Social Security card, the employer should instruct the employee to apply for a new or duplicate Social Security card at his local Social Security Administration office. Upon receipt of the application, the Social Security Administration will issue a receipt to the worker.
The employer should inform the worker that the application must be made before the seventh day of employment. The worker must retain the receipt; however, the employer should make a photocopy for his records.
(c) Once properly verified, the employer should list such numbers on his records including, but not limited to, Wage Reporting records.
This procedure will ensure that only verified Social Security numbers are used when reporting wages to the Unemployment Compensation Wage Reporting System. In addition, following these requirements will greatly reduce the number of wage reporting penalties associated with wages reported under incorrect Social Security numbers.
2. Remuneration paid for each pay period, showing separately:
|(a) Money remuneration, including commissions and bonuses;
(b) Reasonable cash value of remuneration paid by the employer in any medium other than money, including room and board, meals, and tips;
(c) Special payments such as bonuses, gifts, etc., that have been paid during the pay period that relate to employment in a prior period. Payments are regarded as special payments if the amount was not determinable in the prior period. Show separately:
1. The beginning and ending dates of each pay period
2. The total amount of wages paid to each employee in each pay period
3. The total remuneration paid to all such individuals combined, separately by money and other remuneration, in each pay period and in all pay periods within each quarter.
NOTE: By law, payments made to workers under an agreement allowing service charges in lieu of tips are deemed remuneration. The law further provides that gratuities or tips received regularly in the course of employment from other than the employer are considered wages if the employee reports them in writing to his/her employer. If not reported, these wages will be determined in accordance with the prevailing minimum wage rate or the amount of remuneration actually received by the employee from the employer, whichever is higher.
Records are defined as all books of original entry plus any summarizations or other media used to post to a general ledger or its equivalent, as well as all federal and state tax returns. Records also include machine-sensible data media used for recording, consolidating and summarizing accounting transactions within an employing unit’s automatic data processing system.
All records required by the Division of Unemployment Insurance and the Division of Employer Accounts must be kept safe and readily accessible at the New Jersey place of business of the employing unit. Such records must, at all reasonable times, be open for inspection by authorized representatives of these agencies, and must be preserved for the current calendar year and for the four preceding calendar years.
We keep information obtained from employers confidential and use it only to administer the Unemployment Compensation Law. It is not open to the public and cannot be used in any court action unless the Department or the state is a party to such action. Upon request, a claimant may have released to himself/herself or to any duly authorized representative any part of the applicable record.