Frequently Asked Questions
Q: “Are employees able to have different state and federal withholdings allowances? Can it be changed midyear?”
A: Yes, employees may claim more or less dependents on their state and federal tax forms. This can be changed mid-year. We encourage employers to obtain a new W4 with each change.
Q: “What are the requirements to receive a ministerial housing allowance?”
You must be a licensed, commissioned, or ordained minister. The amount to exclude must be predesignated prior to payment. It is advised clergy have a Housing Allowance Agreement in place at the beginning of each calendar or fiscal year. For more information on a ministers housing allowance, refer to Tax Topic 417- Earnings for Clergy.
Q: “My church has 50 employees. Do we need to report to the IRS for the Affordable Care Act?”
A: The Affordable Care Act requires employers who are “Applicable Large Employers” report. This is calculated based on hours worked by employees, not necessarily individuals employed. For more information please contact our office.
Q: “We are a church with only 3 employees including our pastor. Are we required to have a sick leave policy?”
A: The state of California requires employers of any size to offer their employees three days or 24 hours of sick leave. The amount of hours required may vary if your church is located in region where local mandates are applicable. We can assist you with the development of a sick leave policy and accrual record keeping. Please call our office for more information.
Q: “If we have a work place injury, what forms are we required to complete?”
A: The Workers Compensation Claim Form (DWC1) & Notice of Potential Eligibility and should be submitted with the claim. There are other required forms and we are happy to assist with the claim filing process. Please call our main line for assistance.
Q: “What is an IIPP manual? Is our church required to have one? “
A: An Injury Illness Prevention (IIPP) is a basic written workplace safety program. Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations (T8CCR) section 3203, requires every employer to develop and implement an effective IIPP. Cal OSHA issues more citations to employers for not having an IIPP manual, more than any other citation. If you require assistance with developing an effective IIPP manual, please contact our office.
Q: “When do I need to give an employee a break?”
A: In California, a 10 minute break is given for every 4 hours worked. A 30 minute lunch break is given if an employee works more than 5 hours per day.
Q: “We have an employee who works as a Sunday school teacher. Is she considered an independent contractor or an employee?”
A: If the individual has the ability to control the details of the work performed, how it is completed, and responsible for their own schedule, as well as other essential functions of the position, the individual could be paid as an independent contractor. Most workers need to be paid as employees though. Please contact us for assistance.
Q: “How long do I have after an employee starts work before we have to have an I9 completed?”
A: Employers must examine an employee’s documents evidencing identity and employment eligibility and complete Section 2 of the Form I-9 within three business days of the employee’s first day of work for pay. If you hire a person for fewer than three business days, both sections 1 and 2 of the Form I-9 must be fully completed no later than the first day of work for pay. For further instruction on how to complete an I-9, please attend this USCIS Webinar.