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Are You Prepared for the April 15 Year-end Return Filing Deadline?

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Are you rushing to meet the April 15 deadline to file your personal income taxes? Well, good news for procrastinators as you might be in luck. If you haven’t started preparing your 2013 tax return, or maybe you have more to report than the income on a W-2 and a 1099, here’s an easy solution: File for an extension.

Filing for an extension doesn’t make you any more susceptible to be the target of an IRS audit, so if you need it, take it. It is better to be well prepared than rushed and disorganized. An extension can get you an additional six months to organize all your tax information.

In order to get the extension, you will have to file a Form 4868, “Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Tax Return”. You can file for an extension by sending a completed paper Form 4868 and postmarking it on or before the April 15, 2014 return filing deadline, or you can file for an extension electronically through the IRS website.

The process for electronically filing for an extension is simple: go to the IRS website and select the “Free File” service. You will set up a password-protected account and enter your personal information in the appropriate tax return form (e.g. Form 1040, Form 1040-EZ, etc.). Once your personal information is entered, select “File an Extension” from the options at top of the screen.  Follow the instructions for entering your estimated taxes and taxes paid, and pay any difference in the estimated tax owed.

If you haven’t already prepared your 2013 tax return, how do you determine what amount to pay without underpaying? Well, you’ll have to calculate a reasonable estimate of taxes you owe to submit with Form 4868.

Once you’ve paid part or all of your estimated income tax electronically your extension will automatically process. But remember: you must pay your tax liability due and either file for the extension or file your tax return by April 15; otherwise you will be subjected to IRS penalties and interest. To avoid the late payment penalty, which is five percent per month of the unpaid balance, you must pay at least 90 percent of the total tax amount you owe. By paying the full 100 percent owed, you can also avoid paying the three percent interest fee.

Please note that according to the IRS, there are additional special extension filing rules that apply if you are:

  • Living outside the U.S.,
  • Out of the country when your 6-month extension expires, or
  • Serving in a combat zone or a qualified hazardous duty area

To find out more information about filing for an extension, including the additional special rules above, you can go to Filing Information in IRS Publication 17.

The best way to avoid the stresses of filing your year-end tax return is to be prepared. There is still time left before the April 15 deadline hits. Here are some other helpful tax tips to get you ready:

  • Get Organized – Taxes can be confusing. Set time aside to get all your information together before you begin the process to avoid any unnecessary headaches.
  • File Online – You can file up until midnight on April 15. You can file online from anywhere; you don’t even have to get out of bed.
  • Reduce your tax bill even more – Did you give to a charity last year and have you claimed all credits available to you? Be sure to include everything available to you to reduce your tax bill.
  • File for free – FreeFile through the IRS and Turbo tax allow you to file your federal taxes for free if you meet the specified eligibility requirements.
  • File an amendment – If you make an error or forget to take a deduction when filing and you realize it later, here’s your solution: file an amendment.  Filing an amendment gives you three years to rectify your mistakes.

If the tax return deadline has crept up on you this year, don’t panic; an extension offers a simple solution. However, it is important that you still file for the extension by the April 15 deadline, and keep in mind you still have to submit a payment in addition to filing Form 4868.

 



Author Bio:

Barclay has over 20 years of experience working as a consultant. He has worked in the consulting practices of accounting firms Ernst & Young and Causey Demgen & Moore. Barclay joined Paycom in 2011 and is currently a Tax Research Analyst. Robbie is a graduate of Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn.

Podcasts

5 Podcasts That Every HR Professional Should Download

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Podcasts provide the opportunity to sit like a fly on the wall and listen to some of the most brilliant minds in the world converse about today’s biggest trends and challenges.

According to a study by Triton Digital, nearly one quarter of Americans listen to a podcast at least once a month. Education is a popular subject, with 40% of podcast listeners tuning in to that type. If you’re an HR professional or business leader looking to broaden your knowledge of HR and HR technology this year, I highly recommend filling your ears and brains with these five podcasts throughout ’18.

1. HBR IdeaCast

From Harvard Business Review, the weekly HBR IdeaCast features leading thinkers in business and management discussing a variety of key topics in the work world.

It is an excellent resource for insights on a wide array of subjects including, but not limited to, HR. The discussions apply directly to organizations nationwide. The podcast reminds me of NPR’s Fresh Air, but with an emphasis on business leaders.

Recommended episodes:

2. HR Happy Hour

Since 2009, HR Happy Hour has featured thought leaders, workplace and technology experts, academics and more to take on important aspects impacting HR, technology and the workplace.

The podcast is so long-running that it has episodes dedicated to just about every HR topic under the sun. The charming hosts Steve Boese and Trish McFarlane make trending topics fun and informative.

Recommended episodes:

3. CIPD

From the UK’s Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, the monthly CIPD podcast covers everything from talent acquisition to workplace training and cybersecurity.

CIPD’s international perspective brings fresh eyes to subjects that resonate with many American HR professionals. With a backlog of more than seven years’ worth of episodes available, it’s easy to recommend.

Recommended episodes:

4. Workology Podcast

Covering the science and art of the workplace, Jessica Miller-Merrell’s Workology Podcast offers insights and actionable tips on HR and recruiting. Each 45-minute episode promises an in-depth look at every company’s most valuable asset: the employee.

In asking sharp, pointed questions about the latest HR trends, Miller-Merrell does an excellent job as host, bringing a unique and often unexpected take on familiar subject matter.

Recommended episodes:

5. HR Break Room

The official podcast of Paycom, HR Break Room brings you quick conversations on hot topics in HR and HR technology. Co-host Chelsea Justice and I talk with guest experts about the challenges faced by the everyday workplace, as well as their solutions.

To be a bit self-indulgent, I love doing this podcast because it gives me the opportunity to talk with some of the most brilliant minds in the industry. In our first year, our esteemed guests have included New York Times best-selling author Cy Wakeman, millennial expert Adam Smiley Poswolsky, HR Bartender’s Sharlyn Lauby, futurist Jacob Morgan, author and Harvard professor Mihir Desai and of course, motivational speaker and leadership expert, Mark Sanborn.

Recommended episodes:

You can learn more about goings-on within the HR sphere by subscribing to HR Break Room podcast. Here’s to a year full of professional growth through podcasts!

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Posted in Blog, Featured, HR Management, Leadership

caleb.masters

by Caleb Masters


Author Bio:

Caleb is the host of The HR Break Room and a Webinar and Podcast Producer at Paycom. With more than 5 years of experience as a published online writer and content producer, Caleb has produced dozens of podcasts and videos for multiple industries both local and online. Caleb continues to assist organizations creatively communicate their ideas and messages through researched talks, blog posts and new media. Outside of work, Caleb enjoys running, discussing movies and trying new local restaurants.

Deadline Extended

Employer Deadline Extended for Furnishing 2017 ACA Forms

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Distribution of 2017 Affordable Care Act (ACA) Forms 1095-B or -C to your employees has been extended.

As issued in Notice 2018-06, the IRS has extended the deadline from Jan. 31 to March 2. (However, the deadline to provide Forms W-2 and 1099 to employees and contract workers remains as Jan. 31.)

Filing deadlines unchanged

While the deadline to furnish forms was extended, the filing deadlines remain the same: Feb. 28 for paper forms, and April 2 for electronic forms.

IRS Notice 2018-06 emphasizes that employers who do not comply with the due dates for furnishing or filing are subject to penalties under sections 6722 or 6721.

Good-faith transition relief extended

The IRS also announced the extension of good-faith transition relief. This may allow an employer to avoid some penalties if it can show that it made good-faith efforts to comply with the information reporting requirements for 2017.

This relief applies only to incorrect and incomplete information reported on the ACA forms, and not to a failure to file or furnish the forms in a timely manner. Additionally, the IRS stated it does not anticipate extending either the good-faith transition relief or the furnishing deadline in future years.

Contact a trusted tax professional if you have questions on how this may affect your business specifically.

Click here to read more about how the ACA is affect by the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Disclaimer: This blog includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You need to contact a lawyer licensed in your jurisdiction for advice on specific legal problems.

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Posted in ACA, Blog, Compliance, Featured

Erin Maxwell

by Erin Maxwell


Author Bio:

As a compliance attorney for Paycom, Erin Maxwell monitors legal and regulatory changes at the state and federal level, focusing on health and employee benefits laws, to ensure the Paycom system is updated accordingly. She previously served as assistant general counsel at Asset Servicing Group in Oklahoma City. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma and a J.D. from the University of Oklahoma. Outside of work, Maxwell enjoys politics, historical mysteries and spending time with her family.

Creating an Employer Brand

3 Steps for Creating an Employer Brand That Attracts Top Talent

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Talent shortages and an emphasis on recruiting initiatives have made the employer brand one of 2017’s hottest HR topics. The phrase has garnered plenty of buzz online, but for many HR personnel, the definition of “employer brand” remains unclear.

To learn more on the subject, I spoke with guest Rachel Duran, manager of talent acquisition marketing at CA Technologies on an episode of Paycom’s HR Break Room podcast. Below are three main takeaways from that conversation.

Learn more about the employer brand by listening to the full interview with Rachel on the HR Break Room podcast

1. Be descriptive

The employer brand is similar to a product brand in that you can’t just put out a successful product without positioning it at all. You need to let the customers (or in this case, prospective employees) know what they can expect from what you’re selling (your organization). Describe what it means to work at your company and share which jobs are available; the answers to those questions make up your employer brand.

Communicating your employer brand can be as simple as a job description presented through blogs, videos, quizzes and interactive materials that help prospective candidates understand what they can expect from the culture, the benefits and the overall environment of the organization.

2. Be authentic

Authenticity is key to establishing an employer brand that attracts the right talent for you. The brand is shaped by the entire organization from the bottom up and is defined by the culture formed organically by employees and management alike.

Questions top talent asks when considering their next career step include “What does the day-to-day look like?” and “How do your organization’s values impact the atmosphere of the workspace?” Authentic answers are essential.

Don’t be afraid to dig in and do the investigative work to ensure your materials are accurate; they should communicate your employer value proposition. Also, avoid making the mistake of building a brand that is not reflective of your company’s actual mission and culture.

If marketing of an employer brand is not authentic and transparent, it runs the risk of actually increasing employee turnover when expectations are not met. Every interaction, from a recruiter’s first phone call to a company-wide email, is part of employer branding. If a company is not authentic in everything, it is unfair to expect employees to be satisfied.

3. Be realistic

A critical step in shaping your employer brand is to set realistic expectations for prospective talent. Branding should dictate all aspects of the organization’s representation, so ensure the perspectives of key stakeholders are included.

Once you have everybody’s perspective, it’s time to create the promotional materials for your employer brand. From the seemingly minute post with a custom hashtag to a larger project, such as a dedicated career website full of videos, your content should reflect your company’s culture.

In the current war for talent, the employer brand can be a valuable tool in recruiting efforts. Ensure your brand makes the biggest impact possible by being true to who you are. The secret to recruiting and retaining the talent you need is as simple as being honest about your organization’s identity.

Tags:
Posted in Blog, Featured, Talent Acquisition

caleb.masters

by Caleb Masters


Author Bio:

Caleb is the host of The HR Break Room and a Webinar and Podcast Producer at Paycom. With more than 5 years of experience as a published online writer and content producer, Caleb has produced dozens of podcasts and videos for multiple industries both local and online. Caleb continues to assist organizations creatively communicate their ideas and messages through researched talks, blog posts and new media. Outside of work, Caleb enjoys running, discussing movies and trying new local restaurants.

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