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HR and Payroll Dates to Remember in 2020

HR and Payroll teams have important deadlines to meet throughout each calendar year. At the time of this writing, one of the biggest annual dates in this regard had already passed, namely the Jan. 31 deadline for submitting W-2s to all employees.

This date is the de facto kickoff to tax season and the first of many deadlines that HR/payroll professionals have to be mindful of. In this guide, we will examine some of the other key dates. Be sure to check back often to keep track of key workflows and responsibilities, from ensuring that workers can file their taxes to managing open enrollment periods.

January 2020

January 31, 2020: Last day to furnish W-2s to employees. Note that if an employee has opted for electronic receipt of their W-2, then it needs to be posted to the appropriate site by this day and accompanied by a notification.

January 31 is also the deadline for 1099-MISC when reporting nonemployee compensation in Box 7.  1099s need to be sent to appropriate contractors, vendors, and other nonemployees.

Applicable large employers should furnish full-time employees with their 1095-C by this date, while others should distribute the similar 1095-B. The IRS has made this deadline somewhat flexible (see the “March 2020” section below), but employers should still aim to deliver them as soon as they’re available.

Numerous other forms have deadlines on this date. Some of the notable ones include:

  • Form 945: income tax withheld on nonpayroll items
  • Form 944: withheld income taxes and Social Security and Medicare taxes for certain small businesses
  • Form 941: employer’s quarterly tax return
  • Form 940: Federal Unemployment Tax Act [FUTA] taxes

February 2020

February 1, 2020: OSHA 300 logs (Forms 300 and 300A) need to be posted in non-exempt workplaces from this date until April 30.

February 17, 2020: President’s Day (federal holiday).

February 18, 2020: The previous year’s employee exemptions from withholding expire. A new W-4 should be requested from any exempt employees by this date.

February 28, 2020: Deadline to file the 1094-C and 10950-C with the IRS if filing by paper, for applicable large employers. Other employers will instead need to file the 1094-B and 1095-B. All of these forms pertain to health insurance coverage information.

March 2020

March 2, 2020: Technically this is the last day for furnishing forms 1095-C or 1095-B to employees. For tip income and allocated tips, this is also the deadline for filling out Form 8027. Finally, OSHA Form 300A needs to be electronically reported by this date.

March 16, 2020: Due date for tax forms from S Corps and partnerships.

March 31, 2020: This is the deadline for a bevy of forms to be filed with the IRS, but it only applies to electronic filings. The electronic forms due on this day include:

  • W-2G
  • 1099-MISC
  • 1094-C and 1095-C
  • 1094-B and 1095-B
  • Copy A Form 3921
  • Copy A Form 3922
  • Form 8027

April 2020

April 15, 2020: Income tax filings due.

April 30, 2020: Quarterly employer tax returns (Form 941) due for the first quarter of 2020. FUTA taxes owed also need to be deposited by this date if in excess of $500.

May 2020

May 25, 2020: Memorial Day (federal holiday)

July 2020

July 3, 2020: July 4th observed (federal holiday)

July 31, 2020: Form 941 due for the second quarter; deposit FUTA tax owed through June.

Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) fees are also due on this day for applicable entities.

As the IRS explains, these fees apply to “issuers of specified health insurance policies and plan sponsors of applicable self-insured health plans.” They are reported only once per year, on Form 720.

Note that although Form 720 is formally titled “Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return,” for the purposes of PCORI it is to be filed on an annual basis only.

August 2020

August 1, 2020: Late filing date for Forms 1094-C and 1095-C.

September 2020

September 7, 2020: Labor Day (federal holiday)

October 2020

October 12, 2020: Indigenous People’s Day / Columbus Day (federal holiday)

October 14, 2020: Deadline for employers to notify Medicare-eligible enrollees of creditable coverage for prescription drugs. Notices should be sent via mail or electronically by this date, prior to the annual Medicare open enrollment period. However, if your company does not offer prescription drug coverage, this deadline does not apply.

October 15, 2020: This is the last day to submit any individual tax returns that received extensions.

November 2020

November 1, 2020: Open enrollment begins for Marketplace coverage provided through the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Plans for the 2020 calendar year may be selected or updated via the website or similar state-level site.

November 2, 2020: Form 941 due for third quarter; deposit FUTA tax through September.

November 11, 2020: Veteran’s Day (federal holiday)

November 26, 2020: Thanksgiving Day (federal holiday)

The American Payroll Association also recommends encouraging employees to fill out new W-4s during November if they have experienced any personal or financial changes, such as updates in their filing status or number of jobs.

December 2020

December 15, 2020: ACA Marketplace open enrollment ends for the 2021 plan year.

December 25, 2020: Christmas Day (federal holiday)

How to Make HR and Payroll Deadlines More Manageable

In keeping up with these numerous compliance dates, it’s important to have a trusted partner and service provider to work with. The regulatory landscape is always shifting, with key updates like the revised Form W-4 and various changes to ACA reporting on both the federal and state levels each year. CIC Plus has deep expertise in simplifying and automating compliance. We can help you ensure you use the latest forms, make onboarding more efficient, and enable secure self-service for employees at the busiest times of the year (like tax filing season).

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