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New Hire Reporting for Private Sector Employers

The New Hire Reporting Program

Published: April 22, 2013
Information About:
Employers
Topics:
Employer Responsibilities, Multistate Employer Reporting, New Hire Reporting
Types:
Guides/Publications/Reports

What is the New Hire Reporting Program?

New hire reporting is the process by which employers, report information on newly hired employees to a designated state agency shortly after the date of hire.  New hire reports are matched against child support records at the state and national levels to locate parents who owe child support.  This is especially helpful for interstate cases (in which one parent lives in a different state from his or her child), which are often the most difficult cases for states to resolve.

The state child support agency does two things with the new hire data. First, the agency compares the information submitted against current state child support files to locate parents. Second, the agency promptly passes the new hire information to the National Directory of New Hires, a component of the Federal Parent Locator Service (FPLS) within the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE). This service compares the data from the employer's state with child support information from other states and, when a match is found, provides the information to the appropriate state agency.

With new hire reporting, state child support agencies have the ability to issue income-withholding orders - the most effective means of collecting child support - more quickly.

New Hire Reporting Instructions

Data Elements – Federal law requires employers to collect and transmit seven data elements to fulfill their new hire reporting responsibilities. Many states require additional information beyond the seven data elements below:

Data Element Definition
Employer Name Name associated with the Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN)
Employer Address * Address associated with the FEIN entity that employs the individual
Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) Nine-digit number assigned to the employer by the Internal Revenue Service
Employee Name Full name associated with that employee's Social Security number
Employee Address Current residential address of the new employee
Employee SSN Nine-digit Social Security number assigned to the employee by the Social Security Administration
Date of hire Date services for remuneration were first performed

 

*It is strongly recommended that the payroll office address for the newly hired employee also be reported as an additional data element if it is different from the FEIN address.

Employers Required to Report Re-hires – On October 21, 2011, President Obama signed the Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act of 2011 (Public Law 112-40), which amends section 453A(a)(2) of the Social Security Act. The law, effective April 21, 2012, defines a newly hired employee as (i) an employee who has not previously been employed by the employer; (ii) or was previously employed by the employer but has been separated from such prior employment for at least 60 consecutive days.

This is an anti-fraud measure aimed at reducing the number of overpayments to individuals receiving unemployment insurance benefits. For additional information, please see Action Transmittal 11-11.

Reporting Medium – All federal agencies report new hires. Most federal agencies submit information directly, or indirectly through their servicing payroll agency, using Connect:Direct or Cyberfusion Integration Suite (CFI)—a highly secure, commercial data transfer software product that allows state and federal agencies to send and receive large amounts of data from mainframe to mainframe. The remaining agencies use Government Services Online (GSO), a secured website application. Federal agencies select their submission option by contacting the OCSE data transmission team.

Payroll professionals will recognize that the required data elements are identical to those collected on the Federal Form W-4, required from all new employees in order to add them to the firm's payroll roster. Accordingly, many employers send copies of the W-4 as their official new hire report. Employers may also create their own report form or use a state-designed form. Many states accept, at the employer's option, input through the following media: 1) mail, 2) fax, 3) interactive telephone systems, 4) e-mail over the internet, 5) state websites and 6) other electronic or magnetic media.

Multi-State vs. Single-State Employers – A single-state employer hires and employs people within one state. Such an employer is required to report all new hires to the state in which it does business, which is the same state where all its employees work. A multi-state employer hires and employs people in two or more states. Such an employer conducts business within each state, and reports its employees to the states where they work.

Multi-state employers may select one of the following new hire reporting options:

  • Report newly-hired employees to the various states in which they are working, following the New Hire Reporting program regulations, requirements and timeframes of each state; or
  • Select one state where employees are working and report all new hires to that state's designated New Hire Reporting office. (Note: this option is not available to multi-state payroll service companies reporting on behalf of their customers unless those customers are multi-state employers and have requested this option.)

Multi-state employers who choose to report to one state, must submit new hire reports electronically or magnetically. The multi-state employer should contact the state agency to which it will be reporting to obtain its current electronic data specifications.

Additionally, multi-state employers who report all their new hires to a single state must register with the Federal Department of Health and Human Services as to which state they have designated to receive all their new hire information. The National Directory of New Hires maintains a list of those multi-state employers who have elected to use single-state notification. The designated reporting locations chosen by these employers can then be made available to all states.

When registering with the Department of Health and Human Services, the multi-state employer must include the following information:

  • Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN),
  • Employer's name, address and telephone number related to the FEIN,
  • State selected for reporting purposes,
  • Other states in which the company has employees,
  • Corporate contact person,
  • If the company is reporting new hires on behalf of subsidiaries operating under different names and FEINs, list the names and FEINs, as well as the states where those subsidiaries have employees working.

This notification may take place in one of two ways:

  1. Register on-line, or
  2. Download the form and mail or fax to:

Department of Health and Human Services
Administration for Children and Families
Office of Child Support Enforcement
Multistate Employer Notification
P.O. Box 509
Randallstown, MD 21133
Fax: (410) 277-9325

Multi-state employers can receive assistance with registration as a multi-state employer from the Multi-state Help Desk by calling (410) 277-9470, 9:00 am - 5:00 pm, Eastern Time.

Please Note: If your company experiences a merger, acquisition or other change that might affect the reporting requirement in the future, please re-visit our website to update your information.

New Hire and the FPLS

The FPLS, a national location system operated by the OCSE to assist states in locating noncustodial parents, putative fathers, and custodial parties, includes two databases:

  • National Directory of New Hires (NDNH): a central repository of employment, unemployment insurance claimant data, and quarterly wage data from State Directories of New Hires, State workforce agencies, and federal agencies; and
  • Federal Case Registry (FCR): a national database that contains information on individuals in child support cases and child support orders.

The FPLS works in two ways to support state child support operations in identifying home and work addresses and sources of income and assets:

  • First, using a process known as proactive matching, the FPLS compares data from the NDNH to data in the FCR. When there is a match, the FPLS automatically provides new hire, quarterly wage, or unemployment claimant information on custodial and noncustodial parents to any state with a related child support case. The state child support agency uses this information to establish or modify a child support order, or enforce (through income withholding) an existing order.
  • Second, at the request of a state child support agency's State Parent Locator Service, the FPLS will search external federal agency databases in an attempt to locate noncustodial parents and/or their assets, for the purpose of establishing or enforcing a child support order. The FPLS has access to external locate sources such as the Internal Revenue Service, the Social Security Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Defense, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.