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T&C Unemployment Insurance News And Updates – December 27, 2023

HAWAII – Tax Rate, Taxable Wage Base, and WBA Updates
In 2024, Hawaii employers will experience a shift up from Contribution Rate Schedule F to Schedule D, most recently used in 2022. Rates under this schedule will range from 0.2% to 5.8%, with the new employer rate at 3.0%.

Meanwhile, both the taxable wage base and claimant weekly benefit amount will increase. The taxable wage base for the state will increase to $59,100, up 4.2% from $56,700 in 2023. The maximum weekly benefit amount for claimants will be $796 in 2024, up 4.3% from $763 in 2023.

COLORADO – NEW Adequate Response Requirements
Beginning January 1, 2024, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment’s (CDLE) UI Division will begin issuing determinations based on the adequacy of information provided in response to Division requests in addition to timeliness. According to the CDLE, an adequate response means the information provided is sufficient to support a determination on the issue (RCES Inadequate responses fail to provide sufficient information to determine a claimant’s eligibility for UI benefits, regardless of timeliness.

While the above represents a change in requirements at the state level, as a Thomas & Company client, there will be no changes. Thomas & Company partners with our clients to ensure adequate and timely responses to all unemployment claims regardless of state statutes and/or requirements.

COLORADO – Wage Report Requirement Updates
Moving forward, when reporting wages in Colorado’s MyUI Employer+, employers will be required to indicate every month an individual was employed in a given quarter. Failure to do so will result in the report not being accepted. This change comes due to the system update – the previous system would automatically report any employee who received any quarterly wages as employed every month of the quarter. With the new system, the CDLE is no longer able to make this automatic determination.

Additionally, beginning January 10th, 2024, MyUI Employer+ wage submissions using the ICESA file type will be required to use the new employer account number (EAN) format (example: 01234567).

As a reminder, Thomas & Company does not report employee wages for our client partners; therefore, you should discuss the above changes with your payroll team and/or TPA filer to ensure compliance.

WOTC – New Legislation Announced
Congressmen Lloyd Smucker (R-PA) and Terri Sewell (D-AL) have introduced the “Improve and Enhance the Work Opportunity Tax Credit Act,” along with original co-sponsors Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Mike Kelly (R-PA) and Steve Horsford (D-NV).  If passed, the bill would increase the current credit percentage from 40% to 50% of qualified wages and add a second level of credit for employees who work 400 or more hours. It would also eliminate the arbitrary age cap at which SNAP recipients are eligible for WOTC, which will provide an incentive to hire older workers and better align the credit with the work reforms adopted in the debt ceiling negotiations in 2023. Thomas & Company will continue to monitor this bill and its impact as it makes its way through Congress.

Darby Gibson

Author Darby Gibson

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