Effective Immediately: New Employer Reporting Requirements Regarding Dependent Health Coverage Availability

August 2011

Effective July 15, 2011, New York employers are required to submit reports regarding the availability of dependent health insurance coverage.

Quarterly Reporting Requirement

As part of the Quarterly Combined Withholding, Wage Reporting and Unemployment Insurance Return (Form NYS-45), New York employers must now report whether dependent health insurance benefits are available to any employees. The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance has indicated that a new entry area to reflect this new requirement will be included on Form NYS-45 beginning with the 3rd quarter of 2011.

New Hire Reporting Requirements

Within twenty calendar days following an employee's date of hire, New York employers are required to report certain identifying information about new hires working in the State, such as the employee's name and social security information, to the Tax Department. As part of this reporting obligation employers must now report whether dependent health insurance benefits are available to the employee and, if available, the date the employee qualifies for the coverage. There are several alternative methods by which an employer could submit the required information. If an employer chooses to report new hire information electronically, the required information can be reported online at www.nynewhire.com. Alternatively, an employer can submit this information through an employee's completed Form IT-2104 (Employee Withholding Allowance Certificate) or Form IT-2104-E (Certificate of Exemption from Withholding). These Forms have already been updated to reflect this reporting requirement. A set of Frequently Asked Questions issues the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance suggests that, provided all required information is included, an employer may report the required new hire information through written formats other than Form IT-2104. It should be noted if an employer otherwise chooses to satisfy its new hire reporting requirement by submitting the Federal Form W-4, the employer will also need to submit a copy of Form IT-2104 or Form IT-2104E to comply with the new reporting requirements.

We recommend that employers immediately begin to work with their human resources and payroll reporting departments to ensure that they are in compliance with these new reporting requirements.