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All employers are required to report certain information on newly-hired employees to a State Directory of New Hires; in Texas, that office is a division of the Attorney General's office.
Rationale for new hire requirements: reduce various types of state and federal benefit fraud and improve the collection of child support.
Employers must report the following information within 20 days of the first day on the job for all new employees:
federal employer identification number,
employee Social Security number,*
employee address, and
first day of paid work.
Employers can report the information by mail, fax, magnetic tape, diskette, e-mail, or telephone.
There is a $25 per employee penalty for knowingly failing to report new hires, and a $500 per employee penalty for conspiring with new hires to fail to make the report.
Forms: most states will supply a new hire reporting form; employers may also design their own forms, as long as the required information is included. It is acceptable to use a W-4 form* as well.
Basic information from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is available at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cse/newhire/employer/home.htm.
Employers with multi-state operations may designate a single state to report all new hires, or they can choose to report in the individual states where they have employees. Companies choosing to designate a single state for new-hire reporting requirements must notify the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services of their election, either online at http://188.8.131.52/ocse/, or by letter or fax to:
Department of Health and Human Services
Multistate Employer Registration
Office of Child Support Enforcement
P.O. Box 509
Randallstown, MD 21133
Fax: (410) 277-9325
* In the case of employees without Social Security numbers, see "Employees Without Social Security Numbers".
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