Now that you are ready to bring your new employee on board, you must collect and file some forms as the employer. These forms include:
An offer letter is a formal letter that describes the employment details to the candidate and offers them the position.
The following details and information are typically found in an offer letter:
- Job title
- Reporting structure
- Start date
- Salary or hourly rate of pay
- Benefits information
- Paid time off eligibility
The retention requirement for employers to retain offer letters is termination date plus three years.
The Form W-4 tells the employer how much federal income tax to withhold from the employee’s paycheck. A signed W4 is required from each employee. Employees can change their Form W-4 elections by submitting an updated Form W-4 at any time.
Complete and print Form W-4 here.
Employers must maintain a Form W-4 for each employee for at least four years from the date that taxes were due or paid, whichever is later.
Employees can use the PaycheckCity W-4 Calculator to complete and print their Form W-4.
State tax forms
State tax forms tell employers how much state and local tax to withhold from employee’s paychecks. The state tax forms should be provided to employees and collected by the employer.
According to the IRS retention guidelines, you should plan to hold on to employee state tax forms for at least four years. However, it is important to note that some states have longer retention periods, like Alabama, at five years. The length of the retention periods should always be followed.
Find and print state tax forms here.
The Form I-9 is supplied by the Department of Homeland Security and is used to document your employee’s eligibility to work in the United States.
The first step in completing the Form I-9 is for your employee to complete the form and provide you with approved identity and work eligibility documentation for verification. The employer then retains Form I-9. It is unnecessary to submit Form I-9; simply keep it in your files should you need to produce it in the future.
Employers must keep the Form I-9 for each employee for three years after the hire date or one year after employment ends, whichever is later.
State new hire reporting
States use new hire reporting to determine if an employee owes money for child support and to prevent certain fraud types.
As an employer, you are required to report new hires and rehires to your state within twenty days of hire, however some states require it sooner. All businesses in the United States are required to report new hires, regardless of business size, industry, or sector.
For additional information on state mailing addresses and guidelines, visit the PaycheckCity Payroll Resources Center.
If you are an employer with employees in multiple different states, you can use the Multi-State Registry to report all new hires at one time.
Benefits information (if applicable)
If you provide benefits to your employees, all new hires will need information on the available benefits and enrollment. Your insurance provider or benefits broker should provide plan documentation and enrollment paperwork.
All employee benefits election information and documentation should be retained for three years after employee termination.