Payroll and Work Scheduling
Fair Labor Standards Act. The Fair Labor Standards Act provides for minimum standards for both wages and overtime entitlement, and spells out administrative procedures by which covered work time must be compensated. Included in the Act are provisions related to child labor, equal pay, and portal-to-portal activities. In addition, the Act exempts specified employees or groups of employees from the application of certain parts of its provisions.
Payroll Schedule. View the current quarter's payroll schedule (PDF). Time reports need to be in the payroll office by 10:00 a.m.
Direct Deposit. In our continuing efforts to instill best business practices for the University, all University of Nebraska campuses are requiring as of July 1, 2000 that all new faculty, staff and student employees sign up for electronic deposit of their payroll payments. Exceptions will be made for temporary workers (employment of 30 days or less) and those employees under age 18. This policy is similar to one that will be implemented by the State of the Nebraska.
This practice has several advantages to the employees:
- Eliminates delayed checks through the mail service
- Deposits payroll payments at the beginning of the business day of the financial institution each pay day
- Saves the employee a trip to deposit their pay check
- Reduces the chance of a pay warrant being lost or stolen
There will be increased efficiency in terms of time and effort that is saved in not
manually distributing and tracking pay checks.
Starting July 1, 2000, all new employees will need to complete a direct deposit
authorization form (available on SAPPHIRE) along with their Form W-4, 1-9 form and any other payroll documents that may be needed.
Holidays Worked. Employees may be required to work on a University holiday. Hourly paid employees required to work on a holiday will be paid for the holiday plus the hours worked. For hourly paid employees required to work on a holiday, departments may exercise one of the following options: Employee receives holiday pay plus pay for hours worked on the holiday. Or the employee receives pay for the hours worked and takes the holiday (hour for hour) with pay at a later date.
Either option requires prior approval from the department head or chair. Monthly paid employees required to work on a holiday will be given an alternate time off for hours worked on the holiday (hour for hour). The time taken should be mutually agreed upon by the employee and the supervisor.
Biweekly Time Reporting
REVISED JULY, 2010
Biweekly Time sheets:
- Each Department is responsible for printing the timesheets for each of their employee. An exception will be made for those Departments who do not have access to an SAP designated printer. The University Payroll Office will print and mail or email time sheets to those areas.
- All timesheets and leave slips must be signed by the employee and his/her supervisor.
- Timesheets and all supporting documents i.e. leave slips must be retained by the department for a a duration of four years with the exception of six years for work study students. In addition the records for any grant funded positions must be retained for two years beyond the completion of the audit.
- The University Payroll Office will enter time for Departments that do not have access to SAP Payroll. All departments must have a back-up person to enter time. Timesheets that are sent or Faxed (865-8630) to the Payroll Office for time entry must be received in the Payroll Office by noon on Friday of each week. The only exception to this rule is holiday scheduling or other circumstances which may cause an early submission time. The Payroll Processing Schedule indicates the deadlines.
- Timesheet information must be legible. The timesheet shall contain: employee name, personnel number, position number, cost center, pay period dates and number of hours worked each day of the pay period. The total hours worked must also contain the wage type i.e. ropl, fnl, vac etc. If you have a new hire and you cannot print a time sheet for the individual or if the University Payroll Office prints your time sheets and you did not receive a preprinted time sheet for an employee, you may print a blank one from SAPPHIRE-Human Resources / Time Entry. All of the pertinent information indicated above must be indicated on the timesheet.
- The department time entry deadlines are indicated in the Payroll Processing Schedule. Hours must be entered three days prior to the final lockdown date as indicated in the Payroll Processing Schedule. For new employee/appointments time should not be entered until the employee/appointment has been entered into the payroll system by Data Entry. (DO NOT ENTER TIME FOR AN EMPLOYEE IF THE ASSIGNED POSITION NUMBER IS NOT ACTIVE IN THE DATA BASE.) Keep in mind that an employee may have more than one position number. Each Department is responsible for checking on-line to verify that the PAF or employee information has been entered.
- If a department is printing or receiving a time sheet for someone who is no longer employed by their department, the department shall:
- Process a PAF immediately if one had not already been completed
- If an employee has transferred a PDF must be completed reflecting the employee's new department address
- All departments must run a Wage and Hour Report the day after the time has been entered regardless if the department or the Payroll Office enters the time. An exception to this would be those departments who do not have access to SAP. This report is required and is used to audit the actual hours input into the system as compared to the actual timesheets. If there is a discrepancy the department must make the correction or notify the Payroll Office immediately. After the correction has been made the department shall run another Wage and Hour Report the following day to verify that the correction was processed correctly.
- The University Payroll Office will notify the department by e-mail or in some instances by phone of an edit which is stopping the biweekly payroll from processing. It is the responsibility of the Department to immediately make the correction. If assistance is needed the Department must immediately contact the Payroll Staff person who sent the email. Each University Department is responsible to have a back-up person who can correct any edits.
Calculation of Pay
REVISED JULY, 2010
- Biweekly employees: If an employee who is paid bi-weekly is to receive partial pay for the pay period, the calculation formula for the gross partial pay is: the number of hours worked, or benefits hours used in each pay period multiplied by the authorized hourly rate.
- Monthly staff and nine/twelve pay academic employees: If an employee is paid in a monthly pay cycle and is to receive partial pay for the pay period, the calculation formula for the gross partial pay is: the daily rate is the monthly salary rate divided by the number of work days in the month (including holidays). The daily rate is multiplied by the number of days actually worked in the month to obtain the partial pay amount for the month.
- Nine month pay employees including staff (academic) employees: If an employee is paid on a nine month basis and is to receive partial pay for the period, the calculation formula for the gross partial pay is: a daily rate will be determined by the semester salary rate divided by the number of semester days.
- Accurate use of the Wage and Hour Report will reduce the number of overpays/underpays.
- At the time that a Department determines that an employee has been overpaid or underpaid, the department must contact the Payroll office immediately. The Department is responsible to make the necessary corrections relating to the paperwork required. ie. PAF processing, correcting time. If an overpay has occurred, it will be a cooperative effort between the department and the Payroll Office to collect the net overpayment from the employee. The department shall make the initial contact with the employee to inform him/her that an overpaid has been paid. The Payroll Office will send a letter to the employee and copy the department. The letter will indicate the details of the overpay and the manner of collection. The department will not receive credit until the employee has paid back the total net pay.
- If an employee has been underpaid, it is the responsibility of the department to notify the Payroll Office. If the underpay is due to an error in time input, the Department must provide the detailed information and any supporting documentation that is requested to the Payroll Office and the Payroll Office will make corrections to the time entry. If the underpay is due to the lack of a Personnel Action Form (PAF) being processed, the Department must process a PAF immediately and notify Payroll that there has been an underpayment.
Determination of Employee or Independent Contractor
REVISED JULY, 2010
Please refer to Accounts Payable policy More Information
Disposition of Final Pay of Deceased Employee
REVISED JULY, 2010
Upon notification of the death of an employee the Department must notify the Payroll Office immediately. In addition the Department must complete a PAF to separate the deceased employee. The Payroll Office will contact the Benefits Office to determine the next of kin.
Board of Regents Bylaw [3.4.d1b] is as follows:
- Upon death, the salary of a full-time academic-administrative staff member shall terminate at the end of the month in which the death occurs. Provided, however, that this provision in no way abrogates the right to receive salary earned, but not yet paid because of the method of prorating academic-year salaried over a 12 month period.
- Upon death, the salary of a Managerial and Professional staff shall have their salary terminate at the end of the month in which the death occurs.
- Upon death, the salary of a Office and Service staff shall have their pay terminate at the end of the two-week pay period in which the death occurs.
Unpaid wages, vacation pay, floating holiday pay and ¼ of accumulated unused sick leave for office service and benefits eligible temp employees only up to a maximum of 360 hours will be paid out to the “Estate of [deceased]”, unless the successor to the decedent (usually the spouse) completes the Affidavit For Transfer of Personal Property Without Probate Under Nebraska Probate Code which is designed to be used when the estate assets subject to probate do not exceed $25,000. In instances where the spouse meets the qualification set our in the affidavit, the last check will be made payable directly to the spouse. If the spouse cannot meet the terms of the affidavit, the University will issue the last check to the estate through a person who is able to show the University letters of appointment that he/she is the personal representative of the estate. If the spouse qualified to be paid directly, the 1099 Form is processed in the name of the spouse using the spouse’s social security number. If the check must be made out to the estate, the 1099 Form is issued to the estate name and the estates’ tax ID number.
- Unpaid wages and vacation pay paid to the estate of a deceased employee are not considered wages subject to federal and state income tax withholding. Therefore, these payments do not represent an increase in Federal Income Tax Gross (FIT), and no income taxes are to be withheld on them. If paid before the close of the calendar year in which the
employee died, they are considered wages subject to social security withholding, and therefore represent an increase to social security gross. If paid after the close of the calendar year, the payment is not considered wages and it is not social security taxable.
- Accumulated sick leave paid to the estate of a deceased employee is not considered wages for either federal or state income tax withholding or social security withholding.
- If the employee was enrolled in the UNK retirement plan at the time of death, the payment made for unpaid wages, vacation pay, and accumulated unused sick leave is also subject to retirement withholding.
Establishment of Payroll Schedules
REVISED JULY, 2010
Payroll schedules will be developed by the Payroll Office Administrative Services Group (ASG). The campus will be notified by e-mail of any changes made to the established schedules.
To obtain the payroll schedule go to SAPPHIRE (Reference Guides / UNK SAPPHIRE Reference Guides / Human Resources / 2010 Payroll Schedule):
- Biweekly employees: Payday will be every other Thursday as designated by the payroll schedule.
- Monthly employees: Payday will be the last working day of the month. If the last day of the month is on a weekend or holiday, payday will be the first preceding work day.
- If the payday occurs during the campus holiday closedown, those employees on direct deposit will receive their pay on payday. For those employees who receive a paycheck, University Payroll Office will mail the paychecks on the first working day after the holiday closedown.
Garnishments, Levies, Child Support, Etc.
REVISED JULY, 2010
The University's intention is to comply with federal and state law regarding wage garnishments and wage assignments. The State of Nebraska Department of Administrative Services processes all UNK employee garnishment paperwork. The State Department of Administrative Services honors all court orders to garnishee wages or wage assignment for child support as well as all levies on wages originating from the Internal Revenue Service. In cases of multiple wage assignments, priority for honoring them will be in the following order:
- Child support
- Federal levies
- State levies
- Local tax levies
- Creditor garnishments
Remittances of monies collected and confidential files will be maintained by the State of Nebraska State Department of Administrative Services.
**Replace existing policy on HR Payroll page.
Payroll Tax Withholding
REVISED JULY, 2010
Employee Withholding Allowance Certificate W-4
The University of Nebraska is required to withhold federal and state taxes from certain employee wages, using pre-defined IRS and Nebraska State Income Tax withholding tables.
Each employee must complete a W-4 form when beginning work at UNK. If an employee does not complete the W-4 form, federal and state taxes will be withheld using the single status and zero withholding allowances. UNK will not refund any taxes that were withheld due to an employee's neglect to complete the W-4 form. To make changes to your W-4 allowances contact your department Office Associate or the UNK Campus Payroll office. For those employees who have access to Firefly, changes to W-4 allowances can also be made through Employee Self Service (ESS).
To determine the correct number of allowances you should claim on your W-4, complete the Personal Allowances Worksheet provided by the IRS.
IRS Personal Allowances Worksheet
A W-4 remains in effect until an employee submits a new one except in the case where an employee claimed to be exempt. An exempt employee must complete a new W-4 each calendar year. See further details regarding exempt status below.
If an employee is to receive an award payment or additional pay i.e. overload pay, summer research, summer teaching it is the responsibility of the department to notify the employee that he/she may want to change his/her W-4 withholding status in order to prevent over taxation due to the additional income. An employee may request the Payroll Office to provide him/her with a tax projection analysis worksheet based on the various exemptions.
Exemption From Income Tax Withholding
The W-4 for an employee who has indicated that he/she is exempt from withholding expires on February 16th of each calendar year. The UNK Payroll Office will send a letter of notification in late January of each calendar year to employees who have completed their W-4's indicating that they are exempt from withholding. If the employee qualifies and wishes to continue being exempt from federal income tax withholding, the employee must complete a new W-4 and submit it the Payroll Office by the deadline indicated in the letter. To determine if you are eligible to claim exempt on your W-4, see the Exemption from Withholding section of IRS Publication 515.
Nebraska State Income Tax
Nebraska follows federal rules for determining the number of allowances to claim for NE state tax withholding purposes, unless an alternative withholding percentage is required by state law.
Nebraska Dept of Revenue State Income Tax
In general, if you pay wages to nonresident aliens, you must withhold income tax (unless exempted by regulations), social security and Medicare taxes as you would for a U. S. citizen. However, income tax withholding from the wages of nonresident aliens is subject to special rules. Please see instruction for completing the NRA W-4 in Sapphire at Business Forms / UNK Business Forms / Human Resources / Form W-4 Form for NRA.
Note: Nonresident alien students from India are not subject to the additional income tax withholding requirement.
Claiming Tax Treaty Benefits
In order for foreign nonresident alien students and scholars to be exempt from federal and state income tax withholding the non-resident alien must meet certain criteria. First, there must be a treaty provision that exists between the United States and the nonresident alien’s country of residence. Second, the individual must meet the treaty eligibility requirements for the particular treaty article being claimed. Third, the nonresident alien must have either a social security number or and Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to be able to receive treaty benefits. Fourth, the correct tax treaty exemption forms must be completed supported by all required documentation.
The type of form used to claim treaty benefits depends upon the type of income being paid under the treaty provision, and whether the foreign individual is a nonresident alien for resident alien for tax purposes.
- For personal services income
- Use form 8233 and the Tax Treaty Statement if the individual is a student, a teacher or researcher. Form 8233 and the Tax Treaty Statement expires at the end of each calendar year. The UNK Payroll Office will notify the nonresident alien that he/she must complete a new form each year. The nonresident alien is responsible for completing the form and returning it to the Payroll Office prior to the deadline indicated in the letter. If the nonresident fails to complete the proper forms each years, he/she will not be given treaty benefits until such time that the new treaty forms are completed.
- Use form W-9 and Attachment to form W-9 if the foreign individual is a resident alien for tax purposes. This form is valid indefinitely until the individual’s circumstances change where the information reported is no longer valid, i.e. the resident alien becomes a “green card” holder or citizen, or treaty time limits run out.
Use form W-8BEN for scholarship/fellowship grants and royalty income if the foreign individual is a nonresident alien for tax purposes. This form is valid as long as the individual is eligible for treaty benefits and the individual receives a tax reportable payment at least once per year.
- Use form W-9 and Attachment to form W-9 if the individual is the foreign individual is a resident alien for tax purposes. This form is valid indefinitely until the individual’s circumstances change where the information reported is no longer valid i.e. resident alien becomes a “green card” holder, a citizen or treaty time limits run out.
NONRESIDENT & RESIDENT ALIEN SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER/ TAXPAYER IDENTIFICATION NUMBER (TIN) REQUIREMENT
Effective for payments made on or after January 1, 2001, any tax treaty claim made on forms 8233 or W-8BEN which do not contain a social security number or a permanent U. S. Taxpayer Identification number cannot be accepted.
A permanent TIN is:
- Social Security Number (SSN) – Used for employees, independent contractor and scholarship/fellowship recipients
- Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) – Used for independent contractor and some scholarship/fellowship recipients
Sapphire – Tax Treaty Table and Tax Treaty Statements
Sapphire – 8233 Form
Sapphire – W-9 Form
Sapphire - W-8BEN Form
IRS Publication 901
IRS Tax Treaty Information
W-2 Tax Forms
By January 31st of each calendar year, UNK is required to report to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the State of Nebraska Department of Revenue on a W-2 form for each employee the taxable wages and related compensation, income taxes withheld and certain payroll deduction for the previous calendar year. Wages are always reported for the year in which they are paid.
W-2's for all current University of Nebraska at Kearney employees will be delivered via campus mail to the respective department and the Office Associate for each department will be responsible for distribution to each employee. W-2’s for separated employees will be mailed to the employee’s permanent home address in the University SAP payroll system prior to January 31st of each calendar year.
It is the employee’s responsibility to notify his/her payroll clerk of any address change. If an employee has already separated from the University, it is his/her responsibility to notify the Payroll Office of his/her permanent mailing address.
If an employee does not receive his/her W-2 for wages earned in the previous calendar year by February 10 of each calendar year, he/she should contact the UNK Payroll Office to determine if the W-2 had been returned to the Payroll Office by the U. S. Postal Service. If an employee did not receive his/her W-2 and it was not returned by the U.S. Postal Service, he/she may request a duplicate by completing a request for duplicate and providing proof of identification via a picture ID.
All employees of the University of Nebraska are subject to social security tax withholding, based on the earnings levels and tax rates established by the IRS. Two categories of employees may be exempt from social security tax withholding, depending on the specific facts and circumstances relating to their employment as follows:
- Undergraduate and graduate students who meet the tests defined in IRS revenue procedure 98-16 and UNK Policy for being enrolled and regularly attending classes during the academic semester in which they are employed will be exempt from FICA withholding on University wages. The tem “student” refers to undergraduate or graduate
- Nonresident aliens who hold F-1, J-1, M-1 or Q-1 visas and who are performing employment that is consistent with the provisions of their visa status; and do not meet the substantial presence test (SPT) which is 5 years for students and 2 years for teacher/researcher.
In accordance with federal tax laws, the University of Nebraska shall grant an exemption from social security (FICA) tax withholding on wages paid to a student during an academic semester or summer session in which the student is enrolled and regularly attending classes. A student will be deemed to be enrolled and regularly attending classes if he/she is enrolled at least half-time, i.e. 50% of the minimum number of hours required for full-time enrollment certification purposes. Minimum exemption thresholds are:
Fall, Spring Semesters
six (6) credit hours per semester
All Summer Sessions Combined
six (6) credit hours
Fall, Spring Semesters
four (4) credit hours per semester can be certified full time
All Summer Sessions Combined
three (3) credit hours per session can be certified full time
Active Dissertation Status
one (1) credit hour per semester must be certified as full-time
Students who are enrolled and regularly attending classes in a given academic semester/session will be entitled to the exemption from FICA tax withholding for any brief period of time between the end of one semester/session and the start of the succeeding semester/session if they qualified for the exemption in the immediately preceding semester/session. For example, a student who is enrolled during the second summer session would retain the exemption during the period between the end of the second summer session and the start of the fall semester and also during Christmas break.
In all circumstances, it is the responsibility of the student worker to register, maintain his/her student status and complete any required forms to be eligible for FICA exempt status. If a student fails to maintain exempt status during the fall and spring semester or summer sessions by dropping credit hours or terminating his/her student status, all wages paid from that point forward are subject to FICA.
All non-student and/or full-time employees will not be eligible for the student FICA exemption.
IRS Student FICA guidelines -Social Security Administration
Refund of Employee Voluntary Deductions
REVISED JULY, 2010
A University employee may choose to have “voluntary deductions” withheld from his/her paycheck i.e. parking, health insurance, campus recreation fee, combined campaign, foundation. The various departments or organizations are responsible for the notifying to the University Payroll Office that the deduction is to be made. The departments or organization must make arrangements with the Payroll Office as to the means by which the deduction will be updated to the employee’s record.
A refund of an employee voluntary payroll deductions will be made to an employee upon written or e-mail notification to the Payroll Office by the department or organization that initiated the deduction request. In most cases, refunds will be added to the net pay of the next payroll check to be issued to the employee. Refunds of voluntary deductions must be negotiated between the employee and the entity requesting that the deduction be made. If the delay will cause a hardship on the employee, a refund will be made by means of a special check. Any payroll deductions already committed to the purchase of US Savings Bonds cannot be refunded.
Refunds of required taxes and FICA deductions cannot be made except as provided for in federal regulations.
Retention/Destruction of Payroll Records
REVISED JULY 2010
It is the department's responsibility to retain all employee payroll records, including work study student records, for a period of the current year plus seven. For example, for an employee working in January, 2003, payroll records would be maintained from January, 2003 through January, 2010.
Stop Payment and Reissue of Payroll Checks
REVISED JULY, 2010
University payroll checks, which are lost, stolen or mutilated, will be replaced upon authorization of the Payroll Office. The State Department of Administrative Services will process the request for duplicate check. Upon notification of a lost, stolen or mutilated check, a stop payment will be placed on the original check prior to submitting the request for a duplicate. The employee must complete the Affidavit for Lost or Stolen Check and send it to the Payroll Office for processing. The form must be notarized and signed by the employee payee. Upon submission of the completed form, ten working days must elapse before a reissue will be processed. The request for duplicate form may be obtained from the Payroll Office.