IRS Notice 2016-40 – Extends WOTC Transition Relief 3 Additional Months

Today, the IRS formally recognized that employers (and state workforce agencies) need more time to adjust to the WOTC-program changes initiated by the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015.

This morning, the IRS issued Notice 2016-40, which extends transition relief for another three months. At about the same time, the Department of Labor also issued Training and Employment Guidance Letter Number 25-15, dealing with the same issues.

Background:

Back in March, the IRS issued Notice 2016-22, which temporarily modified the normal 28-day application deadline for WOTC applications.  That notice established June 29th as the grand-deadline to submit applications for all employees hired from January 1, 2015 through May 31, 2016.

Built into that schedule, however, was anticipation that the Department of Labor would issue updated WOTC forms in a timely manner.  Employers and state workforce agencies would need time to adjust their procedures and technology to handle all the changes.

This morning, however, we found ourselves just 12 days away from that original deadline, still waiting for the updated forms.  Happily, the new ETA forms are referenced in this mornings Guidance Letter. So I anticipate having them soon — probably later today.

Nevertheless, 12 days is not enough time to make this work.  We now collectively have been granted until September 28th to get our systems into working order and to submit all outstanding applications.

This deadline extension applies to employees hired January 1, 2015 through August 31, 2016.  Other than extending the time frames of transition relief, the recent notice does not otherwise modify the terms of the original IRS Notice 2016-22.

 

 

Deadlines Looming, WOTC Coalition Asks Treasury Department to Extend Transition Relief for 90 More Days

Paul Suplizio, President of the the Work Opportunity Tax Credit Coalition has authored an official letter to the Department of Treasury urging the Department to extend the time period granted for WOTC applications under Transition Relief.

IRS Notice 2016-22 provides Transition Relief for employers needing more time to process WOTC applications for employees hired in 2015 and early 2016.  This relief was necessary because of Congress’ long delay in reauthorizing the WOTC program after it expired on December 31, 2014.

Congress passed legislation on December 18, 2015 to reauthorize WOTC for 5 years, including retroactively 1 year to cover 2015.

Under the regular rules, employers face a 28-day deadline to submit a WOTC application for an employee who qualified at their time of hire. Transition Relief, as currently offered by the IRS, extends the application deadline to June 29, 2016 for all eligible employees hired from January 1, 2015 through May 31, 2016.  The WOTC Coalition is asking the Treasury Department to extend the June 29 deadline by another 90 days.

Why? WOTC employers still face a major problem.  The Department of Labor has not yet issued the revised application forms and the official guidance employers need in order to comply with the newest provision of the WOTC tax code.

State workforce agencies that receive the applications and issue certificates for qualifying employers also face challenges. Until the new forms and guidance are issued, they can not update the software systems and online webforms that support the application and certification process.  Agencies in many states are asking employers to delay submitting their applications until the updates and revisions can be made.

Even if the Department of Labor issued the anticipated forms and guidance today, many state workforce agencies would be hard pressed to complete their internal system updates in time for employers to submit all their WOTC applications before the June 29 deadline.

 

WOTC Transition Relief and Forms Update – Almost There

Paul Suplizio, President of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit Coalition, announced this morning that the IRS has released Notice 2016-22 providing for WOTC Transition Relief. I believe Paul but so far, I am unable to find the documents online.  Perhaps they’ll show up later today.

As soon as the nitty-gritty details come to light, you’ll be the first to know.

WOTC – Still Waiting for New Forms and Transition Relief

A few friends of the blog have contacted me recently, asking if the IRS has issued its notice on transition relief for the re-authorized WOTC program.  Not yet.  Nor has the Department of Labor or IRS issued revised forms for 2016 to reflect the new Long Term Unemployment Recipient target group.

Here’s to continued patience and hoping we see something soon….

Opportunity Alert! IRS Notice 2015-13 Providing Transition Relief for Employers Submitting Late WOTC Applications

We have been waiting for this!

The IRS has released IRS Notice 2015-13, which provides transition relief given the late retroactive renewal of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit program in December 2014.

Notice 2015-13 waves the 28-day deadline for submitting IRS Form 8850 (the WOTC Pre-screen Notice) for qualifying employees hired in 2014.  The extended deadline for submitting the applications for affected employees is now April 30, 2015.  From the Notice:

Because [Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014] extended the WOTC retroactively for 2014 for members of targeted groups, employers need additional time to comply with the requirements of § 51(d)(13)(A). Accordingly, a taxable employer that hired a member of a targeted group (as defined in §§ 51(d)(2) through (10)), or a qualified tax-exempt organization that hired a qualified veteran described in § 51(d)(3), on or after January 1, 2014, and before January 1, 2015, will be considered to have satisfied the requirements of § 51(d)(13)(A)(ii) if it submits the completed Form 8850 to the appropriate DLA to request certification not later than April 30, 2015.

A timely request for certification does not eliminate the need for the employer to receive a certification before claiming the credit.

What does this mean in practical terms?

    • Employers who were sitting on the fence in 2014 may now submit WOTC applications for employees hired in 2014.
    • Moreover, employers who were actively screening and submitting WOTC applications during 2014 — but who declined to submit one or more applications because the 28-day deadline had been missed — may now reconsider and submit those “late” applications.
    • All applications for employees hired in 2014 must be submitted on or before April 30, 2015.

Caution about IRS Notice 2013-14

Yesterday, I published a post about IRS Notice 2013-14.

I have since modified that post and I want to advise caution about how employers interpret the IRS Notice.

The notice provides that employers who submit a completed IRS Form 8850  by April 29, 2013 “will be considered to have satisfied the requirements of § 51(d)(13)(A)(ii).”  This “transition relief” applies generally to WOTC qualifying employees hired from January 1, 2012 through March 31, 2013.  For qualifying veterans, the period is limited to employees hired during the first quarter of 2013.

Now, let’s get technical for a moment.  § 51(d)(13)(A)(ii) includes two basic requirements:  One, that employees complete the IRS 8850 pre-screening notice on or before the day they are offered a job; and two, that employers submit the completed IRS Form 8850 within 28-days of the new employee’s start date.

It is clear that Notice 2013-14 waves the 28-day submission deadline for these employees.

It is not clear, however, if the transition relief waves the requirement that employees complete the IRS 8850 on or before the day of their job offer.  If it does not, then the level of benefit stemming from this transition relief is much less than I originally suspected.

Opportunity Alert! IRS Notice 2013-14 Providing Transition Relief for Employers Submitting Late WOTC Applications

The IRS has released IRS Notice 2013-14, which provides transition relief given the late retroactive renewal of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit program in January. The transition rules are not the same, however, for all WOTC target groups.

Notice 2013-14 waves the 28-day deadline for submitting IRS Form 8850 (the WOTC Pre-screen Notice) for qualifying employees hired within certain dates ranges in 2012 and early 2013. The extended deadline for submitting the applications for affected employees is now April 29, 2013.

The rules apply as follows:

  • For all targeted groups except qualifying veterans, the extension applies to qualifying employees hired from January 1, 2012 through March 31, 2013 (that’s a period of 15 months).
  • For qualifying veterans, the extension applies to qualifying employees hired between January 1, 2013 through March 31, 2013 (a period of just 3 months)

 

Excerpted from Notice 2013-14

 Targeted Groups other than Veterans:

A taxable employer that hires a member of a targeted group (as defined in § 51(d)(2) through (10), other than a qualified veteran described in § 51(d)(3)) on or after January 1, 2012, and on or before March 31, 2013, will be considered to have satisfied the requirements of § 51(d)(13)(A)(ii) if it submits the completed Form 8850 to the DLA to request certification not later than April 29, 2013.

Qualifying Veterans:

An employer that hires any qualified veteran described in § 51(d)(3) on or after January 1, 2013, and on or before March 31, 2013, will be considered to have satisfied the requirements of § 51(d)(13)(A)(ii) if it submits the completed Form 8850 to the DLA to request certification not later than April 29, 2013.

Here a link to the entire Notice 2013-14.