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Dependency Class A will be assigned if there are no dependents or if all of the dependents have been disallowed, if the spouse has an overlapping benefit year with allowed dependents, or if there are dependents claimed but base period wages are insufficient to qualify for a higher weekly benefit amount. Organizations desiring to establish a group account should obtain full details from the department prior to filing the required joint application. The bonding may be in the form of a security purchased from an insurance company, in the form of a deposit of approved governmental bonds or notes or other forms of collateral security approved by ODJFS. Bonds must be registered to the owner with an attached assignment to the department. Any interest earned on the bonds is paid to the organization as it becomes due unless the organization is in default to the department. Employers desiring to form a common rate group should obtain full details from the ODJFS Contribution Section prior to filing the required applications. Example of Negative Balance Employer B’s account has a previous balance plus total contributions amounting to $10,000 and benefit charges of $14,000, leaving a negative balance of $4,000.
These billings must be paid by the last day of the month in which the statement was received, or the posted bonding will be invoked to recover the default in payment. Default in payment also can cause the organization to lose its status as a reimbursing employer. The employer can file an exception to the amount billed on the basis of an accounting error, within 15 days, but cannot use the billing notice as a basis for questioning a claimant’s entitlement to benefits. Two or more contributory employers may establish a common rate group whereby each member in the group would share a common contribution rate.
Government agencies are billed monthly for benefit costs, and late payments will bear interest at the annual rate of 14 percent compounded monthly. The law provides for the establishment of a “mutualized account” separate and apart from the accounts of the individual employers.
In Budget 2021, JSS was extended by up to 6 months for firms in Tiers 1 and 2 sectors, covering wages paid from April 2021 to September 2021. Virtually every type of business must obtain a State Sales Tax Number. If your business sells products on the internet, such as eBay, or through a storefront, and the item is shipped within the same state, sales tax must be collected from the buyer and the sales tax must be paid on the collected tax to the state. The resources below are for businesses taxpayers looking to obtain information on filing and paying Ohio taxes, registering a business, and other services provided by the Department.
You must close your tax accounts, which may include filing a final sales tax return and canceling your vendor’s license. You may also need to close use tax, Commerical Activity Tax, employer withholding, and excise and energy tax accounts. Domestic, for-profit corporations must also obtain a Certificate of Tax Clearance. When the determination allows benefits, payments will be made until such time as an appeal is filed and the resultant decision disallows benefits.
If determined eligible, the claimant may receive benefits until benefit rights are exhausted or until the benefit year comes to an end. The claimant will not be eligible for benefits again until/unless he or she has worked in covered employment in a new base period for a sufficient length of time and earned enough wages to qualify for benefit rights in a new benefit year. The claimant must file a separate claim for each successive week of unemployment. The first claim for which the claimant is found eligible is the waiting week. If a claim for any week is disallowed, no benefits can be paid for that week. If a claimant returns to work and later becomes unemployed, he or she may reopen the existing claim. Nonprofit organizations must file a written notice of election for reimbursing status with ODJFS within 30 days after the mailing date of the Determination of Employer’s Liability and Contribution Rate Determination.
• Return to work in employment covered by an unemployment insurance law; • Work in at least six separate weeks; and • Earn or be paid wages equal to six times the average weekly wage needed to qualify for benefit rights2. To determine the total benefits payable to a claimant within a benefit year, the department must multiply the weekly benefit amount by the number of benefit weeks. For example, what are retained earnings a claimant who has 20 qualifying weeks in the base period and a weekly benefit amount of $120 will have total benefits of 20 times $120 or $2,400. This is the total amount that the claimant is eligible to collect effective with the beginning of the benefit year. In this example, if this claimant remains totally unemployed, total benefits will be exhausted at the end of 20 weeks.
The experience rate is not necessarily lower than the standard rate; this will depend upon the individual employer’s employment experience. Interest – Unpaid Tax Interest shall be imposed on all unpaid income tax, unpaid estimated income tax and unpaid employer withholding tax. The interest rate to be applied each calendar year is the federal short-term rate, rounded to the nearest whole number percent, plus five percent (5%). The law requires each covered employer and non- covered employer to keep a true and accurate employment record of all his or her employees, including hours worked and wages paid, and to furnish this information to the department upon request. The employment record must be preserved and maintained for a period of not less than five years after the calendar year that remuneration is paid to employees. An individual is considered to be registered upon filing an application for benefit rights, making a weekly claim for benefits, or reopening an existing claim following a period of non-reporting or of employment. This period of registration continues for three weeks, and each successive filing registers the individual for another three-week period.
If the application is approved, the employer is issued a written decision that will specify the season’s starting date, the length of the season, the number of weeks of seasonal employment required for a valid seasonal claim, and the maximum seasonal benefits payable. Unemployment benefits are taxable, and claimants must report them to the IRS.
Providing accurate information on the reports, filing the wage information on time, and promptly paying taxes due will permit the department to maintain efficient handling of reports, payments, and applications for benefits. Under certain circumstances, coverage under Ohio law may be extended to include the services performed by an individual both inside and outside Ohio.
Each employer will still be responsible for reporting and paying contributions on its employees. The primary purpose of the mutualized account is to maintain the fund at a safe level and recover the costs of benefits paid to claimants that are not properly chargeable to individual employers. These costs are recovered and the money restored to the trust fund through the mutualized tax levied on all contributory employers. An employer who is not yet eligible for an experience rate will be assigned a standard new employer rate of 2.7 percent unless the employer is engaged in the construction industry. The standard rate assigned to employers engaged in construction is calculated annually and is the average contribution rate of all experienced rated employers engaged in the construction industry.
“Earnings,” as used in this paragraph, means gross wages or remuneration that are received or due to the claimant for performing a personal service with respect to the week being claimed. All such remuneration or retained earnings earnings must be reported to the department including cases where the payment was made in some form other than cash, such as meals or lodging, or payment that is due but has not yet been paid to the claimant.
To establish such an account, a joint application must be filed on the JFS 20121, “Application to Form or Join a Reimbursing Group Account.” A group representative or agent must be appointed by the applicant organization. The agent will be billed and expected to pay the benefit charges made to the group account. The surety bonding of the group may be in the form of one bond for the entire group or individual bonding. Once established, the group account must remain in effect for two years; however, members may be added or withdrawn with the consent of all other members. After two years, the account may be disbanded or individual members may withdraw by their own action. The JFS 20156, “Reimbursing Employer’s Monthly Statement,” will indicate the total amount charged to the employer during the month listed.
New employers wishing to elect reimbursing status and registering the new account online, may request Reimbursing status at that time and will be asked to provide backup documentation as described below. A nonprofit organization, which has been paying contributions, may change to reimbursing status by filing a written notice with the director no later than 30 days prior to the beginning of any calendar year. The taxable wage limitation on wages applies separately to each of an individual’s employers; other employers of the same individual cannot share in it. If an individual works for a second employer, the wages paid by that employer, up to the taxable wage base, is also subject to the payment of contributions.
Nonprofit organizations determined to be liable become “contributory” employers. Such organizations have the option of becoming reimbursing employers and liable for payments in lieu of contributions or “reimburse” the state for benefit charges on a dollar-for-dollar jfs20110 basis. To arrive at the tax, the excess charges are divided by the aggregate taxable payroll of all contributory employers and the resulting percentage rounded to the nearest 10th of one percent, up to a maximum of five-tenths of 1 percent (.005).
After the weekly benefit amount is computed, the department must determine the number of benefit weeks to which the claimant is entitled. A claimant is allowed 20 benefit weeks for the first 20 qualifying weeks in the base period and one additional benefit week The statewide average weekly wage is calculated once a year based on the 12-month period ending June 30 and is rounded down to the nearest dollar. Increases or decreases in the amount of wages required for individuals to have a valid application are effective the following January 1. Forward To assist employers, claimants and other interested individuals in understanding the requirements of Ohio’s unemployment insurance law, the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services has a number of publications available for distribution.
The reason for separation from the subsequent employment will be examined to determine if the claimant can be found eligible. If both spouses qualify for benefits and their benefit years overlap, only one of them may qualify for a dependency class other than A. Reimbursing employers will be billed once each month for the amount of benefits paid to their former employees minus any credits. Once established, the common rate group will remain in effect until one of the members is no longer eligible or until one of the employers requests that the group be discontinued.
If the person with first-hand knowledge of the information is someone other than the informant, the informant must be willing and able to provide the department with a method of contacting the source. The claimant is also disqualified for the duration of the unemployment that is caused by the refusal to accept, or failure to investigate, a referral to suitable work (see “Duration of Suspension” on page 29 and “Suitability of Work” on page 35). Whether the claimant had good cause for refusing the employer’s offer of suitable work depends on the circumstances of the case. For example, if an offer of work was made but the person could not accept it because he or she was injured in an accident, it would be held that such a reason was good cause, and no disqualification would be imposed for the failure to accept the offer. The claimant may, be disqualified for the period of the disability caused by the accident. When the employer has initiated the termination of the claimant’s employment, the employer must show just cause for the termination. Paid cash remuneration of $1,000 in a calendar quarter within either the current or the preceding calendar year.
The filing of the appeal does not stop the payment of benefits automatically. Payments are continued until the decision on an appeal is known; then payments are continued or stopped in accordance with the terms of the decision.
ODJFS maintains a field staff of auditors and investigators to conduct regular audits and investigations of claims to determine whether payments were correct and valid. These audits include a computer cross-match of employers’ wage data reports with information reported by claimants. In addition to reviewing claim records, ODJFS auditors interview claimants and employers, examine payroll records and review work-search activity to verify payment accuracy.
Author: Christopher T Kosty
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