Employee benefits are important to workers, their dependents, and their families. The benefits offered by your company can be a key factor for potential employees.
There are two kinds of employee benefits to consider:
- Those benefits a company must provide legally (such as a salary and Social Security), and
- Benefits offered voluntarily (health insurance, vacations, or retirement plans. Both types come with various tax and legal obligations for the company.
This simple employer guide lists the benefits employers must offer, as required by law.
Social Security Tax Requirements
Every employer must pay Social Security taxes matching the rate paid by employees. The Social Security Administration (SSA) provides more information on their website, such as:
- Info and Resources for Employers
- Social Security Questions
- Online Business Solutions
- Company W-2 Information
- Information on Hiring Employees Not Covered by Social Security
- Unemployment Insurance
Companies with employees may need to pay for unemployment insurance tax obligations. If your company has to pay for these taxes, you’ll have to register with your state’s labor force firm. This information can found using your State or County Tax website.
If you hire employees, your company must have Employees’ Settlement Insurance policy protection. Many commercial insurance brokers offer this type of business insurance. Coverage may also be found through your state’s Employees’ Compensation Insurance coverage program. You can view your state’s Workers’ Compensation web page learn more.
If you own a business in the following areas, you must offer disability insurance. Disability insurance extends to all qualified workers. ANY non-work-related illnesses or injuries may qualify for disability insurance. Affected states and territories for disability insurance restrictions include:
- New Jersey
- New York
- Puerto Rico
- Rhode Island
Most leave benefits provided by companies are not required by the government. Instead, employers offer them as a part of a general employer’s benefits program. Benefits may include:
- Holiday and vacation days
- Jury-duty leave; sick and personal days
- Funeral or bereavement leave, and more
Additionally, employers must offer leave, according to the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
Understanding the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
The FMLA grants employees as much as 12 weeks of leave during a 12-month period, protecting their job. Employees qualify for FMLA if they request leave for one or more of the following causes:
- Birth of a child, childcare, a need to place a child in foster care, or to care for a foster child
- Care of an immediate relative (a child, spouse, or parent) with a serious medical condition
- Medical care for the employee’s personal health
The FMLA requires health benefits continue throughout the entirety of leave as if the employee were still working. Public companies and companies with more than 50 employees must extend FMLA benefits. For more information on the Family and Medical Leave Act and FMLA benefits, visit the Division of Labor’s website.