Vision Payroll

March 31, 2020

CARES Act Has Programs to Aid Small Businesses

Are you wondering what aid is available to small businesses? The US Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship has released a guide to help. It provides useful information on the CARE Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act).

The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act

The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act is a helpful guide. It provides information on the following topics:

  • Paycheck Protection Program Loans
  • Small Business Debt Relief Program
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans and Emergency Economic Injury Grants
  • Small Business Counseling
  • Small Business Contracting
  • Small Business Tax Provisions

Synopses and FAQs Are Presented

Most of the areas covered have a short synopsis as well as a series of Frequently Asked Questions to help guide you to which program or programs are best for your business.

Consult Your Attorney for Advice

As with any major decision, Vision Payroll strongly recommends that you consult your attorney for advice in choosing the program that works for your business. These laws are new and complex and you need to be aware of all the ramifications before proceeding.

March 25, 2020

Tip of the Week: COVID-19 HR Guidance & Best Practices Webinar Recording Now Available

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — Vision @ 12:21 pm

Many of you attended the COVID-19 HR Guidance & Best Practices Webinar, which was presented on Monday. For those of you unable to attend, we have now placed a recording of the webinar on our website.

Webinar Link Below

To view the recording, click here.

Contact Vision Payroll

Please contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions.

March 23, 2020

Vision Payroll To Remain Open During Emergency Order

As you may be aware, on March 23, 2020, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker issued an emergency order requiring all businesses and organizations in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that do not provide COVID-19 (coronavirus) essential services to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers, customers and the public. Payroll services have been deemed essential by both the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) of the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and so Vision Payroll shall remain open during the time covered by this emergency order.

First Responders and Others Will Receive Paychecks

This allows Vision Payroll to continue to ensure that timely paychecks are received by first responders, healthcare professionals, caregivers and many others on the front line of defense against COVID-19 and the virus that causes it. In addition, we can continue to ensure timely payment for those in supporting roles such as grocery stores, transportation, financial services, and many others.

Vision Payroll Working to Minimize Risk

Vision Payroll has taken important steps to minimize the risk of spread of COVID-19, including shifting many employees to remote worksites, closing our office to all but a few employees and essential support service personnel, and maintaining proper social distance between employees whose work necessitates their physical presence in the office.

Consult Your Attorney for Answers in This Rapidly Changing Area 

Please understand that we are in an unprecedented time of emergency orders and rapidly changing laws and regulations. While we can often point you in the right direction to find answers to your questions, any questions about legal requirements should be directed to an attorney who specializes in labor law or taxation. We have worked with several attorneys in these areas and will be happy to provide references should you request them. Remember though, some answers are just not available at this time, as we wait for the government to provide needed clarification.

High Call Volumes Are to Be Expected

We also ask your patience when contacting us. Our telephone lines have been extremely busy and with a reduced staff there may be times that you have to leave a message. We strive to return all calls as soon as possible. In addition, if you are requesting documents, these cases will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis and so there may be a wait for some requests. For fastest service, we recommend you log in to our site, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to access all your needed reports or we will get to your request as soon as possible.

Thank You for Your Cooperation

At this time, we would like to thank you for your understanding and cooperation and also send a big thank you to our dedicated employees, on-site and remote, who are working under stressful conditions to ensure that you and your employees receive their paychecks, guidance in areas new and old, and the friendly, helpful service that you’ve come to expect.

Work to Minimize the Spread of COVID-19

Please join us in working to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and the virus that causes it while we wait for this crisis to end. In the meantime, stay safe and we wish good health to you and your loved ones.

Massachusetts Law Requires Form 0590-A Be Provided To Separated Employees

Vision Payroll reminds employers that under the Massachusetts Employment and Training Law, MGL Chapter 151A, employers must provide a copy of Form 0590-A as soon as practicable, but no more than 30 days, from the last day an employee performed compensable work. Employers must provide this pamphlet to each employee who is separated from work, permanently or temporarily.

Further Information Is Available on the DUA Website

For further information on employer responsibilities during the unemployment claim process, check the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) website.

March 19, 2020

Vision Payroll Closing Office To Visitors

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — Vision @ 3:48 pm

Following recommendations of the CDC and other government agencies, and consistent with industry and community-wide standards, we are closing the office to visitors effective March 22. This will minimize the risk of passing the virus among our employees, our customers, and our vendors.

Determine Delivery Method for Payrolls Normally Picked Up at Office

If you normally pick up payroll, please let us know if you would like electronic delivery of reports or delivery by UPS or USPS. Also, verify the address where you would like your payroll package delivered. As a reminder, you can view reports, including check amounts, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week using our online services.

Submit Early to Help Minimize Delivery Delays

Further, due to the inefficiencies inherent with helping to protect our employees by having employees whose jobs do not require their physical presence at the office working remotely, we suggest you submit payroll as early as possible to offset processing and delivery days. We recommend payrolls be submitted by Monday, whenever possible.

Contact Vision Payroll for Further Information

We realize this may be inconvenient, but out of an abundance of caution we believe it is the most prudent course to follow. Please call (978)840-1635 or email info@visionpayroll.com to arrange delivery of your payroll. Thank you for understanding during this difficult time.

March 17, 2020

Question of the Week: How Should Employers React To COVID-19 (Coronavirus)?

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — Vision @ 5:18 pm

This week’s question comes from Carl, a small-business owner.

Carl asks:

I have several questions about my responsibilities, my obligations, and the measures I should take related to the COVID-19 pandemic. How Should Employers React To COVID-19 (Coronavirus)?

Answer: Log in to the HR Support Center for all the latest information on the COVID-19 pandemic. Documents produced so far include the following:

  • Sample Coronavirus (COVID-19) Communication To Employees
  • Tips to Handle an Infectious Disease Outbreak: Frequently Asked Questions
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance and Resources for Employers
  • Links to Coronavirus (COVID-19) Government Resources
  • Tips to Handle an Infectious Disease Outbreak: Frequently Asked Questions
  • Work from Home Agreement
  • Remote Workforce Guidelines
  • Notice of Furlough

There are other articles, sample policies, and Q & As and more are being added regularly.

Learn Your Responsibilities and Obligations as an Employer Now

To learn your responsibilities, your obligations, and actions you should take, log in now to the HR Support Center. If you’re not yet signed up or don’t remember your login information, contact Vision Payroll today.

COVID-19 Update

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — Vision @ 3:58 pm

Following recommendations of the CDC and other government agencies, we are trying to minimize personal interaction with others. At this time, we are strongly recommending that all payrolls be delivered by the Post Office, UPS, or electronically for the duration of the crisis. This would minimize the risk of passing the virus among our employees, our customers, and our vendors.

Travel Restrictions May Soon Apply

Additionally, there is a very strong possibility that travel may become restricted at some point or that all but a very few businesses will be required to close to the public. As a payroll company, we are generally exempt from such restrictions, but you may be limited in your ability to travel to pick up payroll.

Submit  Early to Help Ensure Timely Delivery

Also, to help ensure timely delivery, please submit your payroll as early as possible, preferably by Monday.

Thank you for Your Understanding During the COVID-19 (coronavirus) Pandemic

We realize this may be inconvenient, but out of an abundance of caution we believe it is the most prudent course to follow. Please call (978)840-1635 or email info@visionpayroll.com to arrange delivery of your payroll.

December 3, 2019

New Year’s Day Holiday May Require Change in Processing Schedule

New Year's Day Holiday May Require Change in Processing Schedule

New Year’s Day Holiday May Require Change in Processing Schedule

Wednesday, January 1, 2020 will be New Year’s Day, a federal holiday. The offices of Vision Payroll will close New Year’s Eve, Tuesday December 31 at 3 pm EST and re-open Thursday January 2. Most banks will also be closed in observance of the holiday. Payroll changes and hours must be submitted before the processing deadlines as listed below.

Normal Payroll Date Process Deadline
1/1/2020 12/27/2019
1/2/2020 12/30/2019
1/3/2020 12/31/2019

Payroll Dates May Be Affected by New Year’s Day

Payrolls dated January 1 will be paid December 31 unless a previous change in schedule has been submitted. Payrolls submitted after these processing deadlines will be pushed back until the next available processing day. No changes are required for payrolls dated January 6.

Bank Withdrawal Dates Will Change for Some Payrolls

For payrolls dated December 31, including those normally paid on Wednesdays, ACH withdrawals from clients’ accounts will occur on Monday, December 30. For payrolls dated January 2, ACH withdrawals from clients’ accounts will occur on Tuesday, December 31. This is necessary to ensure timely crediting of employees’ accounts on the proper day.

UPS Will Limit Deliveries and Pickups

Due to heavy USPS and UPS delivery requirements as well as limited bank hours and staffing, we strongly recommend submitting payrolls during this time as early as practicable. Ground packages received by UPS on December 31 do not ship from UPS until January 2 so we do not recommend submitting on that date any payrolls dated before January 3.

Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. Is Next Federal Holiday

The next federal holiday will be Monday, January 20, 2020, Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. Contact Vision Payroll as soon as possible to make changes to or for questions on your processing schedule.

December 2, 2019

Christmas Day Holiday May Require Change in Processing Schedule

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — Vision @ 4:18 pm

Christmas Day Holiday May Require Change in Processing ScheduleWednesday, December 25, 2019 will be Christmas Day, a federal holiday. The offices of Vision Payroll will close Christmas Eve, Tuesday December 24 at 2 pm EST and re-open Thursday December 26. Most banks will also be closed in observance of the holiday. Payroll changes and hours must be submitted before the processing deadlines as listed below.

Normal Payroll Date Process Deadline
12/25/2019 12/20/2019
12/26/2019 12/23/2019
12/27/2019 12/24/2019

Payroll Dates May Be Affected by Christmas Day

Payrolls dated December 25 will be paid December 24 unless a previous change in schedule has been submitted. Payrolls submitted after these processing deadlines will be pushed back until the next available processing day. No changes are required for payrolls dated December 30.

Bank Withdrawal Dates Will Change for Some Payrolls

For payrolls dated December 24, including those normally paid on Wednesdays, ACH withdrawals from clients’ accounts will occur on Monday, December 23. For payrolls dated December 26, ACH withdrawals from clients’ accounts will occur on Tuesday, December 24. This is necessary to ensure timely crediting of employees’ accounts on the proper day.

UPS Will Limit Deliveries and Pickups

Due to heavy USPS and UPS delivery requirements as well as limited bank hours and staffing, we strongly recommend submitting payrolls during this time as early as practicable. Since the final bank processing for ACH transactions on December 24 is 1 pm EST, in order to ensure proper crediting of transactions for Thursday, December 26, we recommend submitting payrolls dated Thursday no later than 2 pm EST, Monday, December 23. Ground packages received by UPS on December 24 do not ship from UPS until December 26 so we do not recommend submitting on that date any payrolls dated before December 27.

New Year’s Day Is Next Federal Holiday

The next federal holiday will be Wednesday, January 1, 2020, New Year’s Day. Contact Vision Payroll as soon as possible to make changes to or for questions on your processing schedule.

November 24, 2019

2019 Massachusetts Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) Form

2019 Massachusetts HIRD Form

The Department of Revenue has made the new 2019 Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) form available to taxpayers through the MassTaxConnect (MTC) web portal.

What is the HIRD Form?

The HIRD form is a state reporting requirement for Massachusetts Employers in 2019. The HIRD form collects employer level information about your employer sponsored insurance (ESI). The HIRD reporting is administered by MassHealth and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue (DOR) through the MTC web portal. The HIRD form will assist MassHealth in identifying members with access to an ESI who may be eligible for the MassHealth Premium Assistance Program.

Who is required to complete the HIRD Form?

State law requires every employer in Massachusetts with six or more employees to submit the HIRD form annually. If you are an employer who currently has or had six or more employees in any of the past 12 months, you are required to complete the form.

When will the form be due?

The form became available beginning November 15 and must be completed by December 15. The form must be filed electronically through your MTC account and the state will not accept paper forms.

How do I submit the HIRD form?

The HIRD reporting is administered by the DOR through the MTC web portal. The MTC is where employer-taxpayers file returns, forms, and make tax payments. To file your HIRD form, login to your MTC withholding account, on the Accounts tab choose Withholding Tax, and select the “File health insurance responsibility disclosure (HIRD)” hyperlink under the “I Want To” column. If you do not have an MTC account, or if you forgot your password or username, you may follow the instructions provided on the MTC web page or contact the DOR at (617)466-3940.

Can Vision Payroll help me with this filing?

The HIRD Form contains very specific information regarding your employer sponsored health insurance plan including eligibility criteria, employment categories, enrollment periods, and plan year dates. Unfortunately, Vision Payroll does not have access to the required benefit information. Furthermore, as we are a bulk filer of Massachusetts taxes, we do not have access to individual MTC login information. For help with your login credentials, please call the DOR at (617)466-3940.

If you do need assistance with the electronic filing of the form we are offering two options to our clients:

  1. If you are required to file the HIRD Form (any employer with more than 6 employees at any time over the past 12 months) but do not offer an employer sponsored plan, we will file the form electronically on your behalf. Please complete all of Part 1 and Part 2, Question 1 of the 2019 HIRD Paper Form. Sign and date the form.
  2. If you are required to file the HIRD Form and do offer an employer sponsored plan, Vision Payroll will file the electronic version of the form with all the relevant information about your employer sponsored health plans that you provide to us on the 2019 HIRD Paper Form.

Please note: the state will not accept a paper copy of this form.

The fee schedule to have Vision Payroll file on your behalf is on the 2019 HIRD Paper Form.

For more information about the 2019 HIRD form reporting requirements, please contact us at (978)840-1635.

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