Here’s Why U.S. Payroll Compliance Should Be An Ongoing Effort

Payroll Compliance

Beware: FLSA violation lawsuits are on the rise

The U.S. payroll system is complex, to say the least. Payroll professionals are responsible for untangling a web of ever-changing rules and regulations, as well as accounting for the individual circumstances of hundreds or even thousands of employees. The process is tedious, time-consuming, and prone to costly human error.

You’re not alone if you could use a refresher on the practical steps of key payroll policies—from how to handle multi-state employees to understanding state requirements on tax levies and garnishments. After all, there are multiple federal and state laws to comply with, payroll specialist Vicki M. Lambert points out.

The Many Faces of Payroll

According to the American Payroll Association, payroll is one of the most regulated functions in an organization. It must meet not only federal regulations but also state and local jurisdiction requirements. Among these requirements, payroll professionals are responsible for:

  • Wage and hour compliance
  • Travel pay
  • Child support garnishments
  • Handling overpayments
  • Tax withholdings
  • Ensuring new employee eligibility

All payroll professionals must be skilled with navigating the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).The U.S. Department of Labor states that the FLSA is responsible for establishing minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and youth employment standards affecting employees in the private sector and in federal, state, and local governments. Professionals in charge of U.S. payroll must adhere to federal and state minimum wage, tip credits, and youth minimum wage to name a few.

Payroll Compliance Update: Mistakes Are Costly

You may think you know FLSA inside and out, but litigation trends reveal just how often errors happen.

Wage and hour regulatory compliance consists of more than just calculating overtime. As a payroll professional, you are the first line of defense for your employer when it comes to adhering to the federal, state and local regulations. This is no easy task, especially with U.S. payroll systems.

According to Bloomberg Law, in 2015 almost nine-thousand FSLA collective lawsuits were filed in Federal Court. This number was slightly lower in 2016 with just under 8,400 cases filed. While the number of cases filed dropped, costs rose. The top 10 wage and hour settlements in 2016 totaled $700 million, up from $463.6 million the previous year, Bloomberg reported.

With the lawsuit trend expected to increase, it is more important than ever for payroll professionals to ensure they are up-to-date on current wage and hour compliance regulations. In her virtual boot camp, Lambert provides attendees with practical steps and actionable plans to achieve compliance and help protect their employees and employers.

(This post first appeared in an AudioSolutionz blog)

By Stacey K on 8th June 2018

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