logo

Date: May 9, 2016

Bulletin Number: 1366

line
Subject New PayServ Action/Reason Codes and Procedures for Reporting Workers’ Compensation Leaves

Purpose To provide agencies with instructions for using new action/reason codes to report workers’ compensation transactions for employees on workers’ compensation Leave.

Affected Employees All employees on an approved paid workers’ compensation leave effective on or after the beginning of the pay period of the first pay check in calendar year 2015.

Effective Date(s) Effective the beginning of Institution Pay Period 19L/20C and Administration Pay Period 20L/21C (the first pay checks in calendar year 2015):

December 4, 2014, Institution Extra Lag.
December 11, 2014, Institution Lag, Administration Extra Lag.
December 18, 2014, Administration Lag.
December 25, 2014, Institution Current.
January 1, 2015, Administration Current.

Background Workers’ compensation-related benefits are the statutory workers’ compensation benefit and any supplemental payments for on-the-job injuries that were negotiated by the State.

Under IRS regulations, workers’ compensation-related benefits are exempt from Social Security and Medicare taxes. Workers’ compensation-related benefits are also exempt from federal income taxes, New York State income taxes and local income taxes, if applicable.

Also, under IRS regulations, non-taxable workers’ compensation-related benefits are not eligible for salary deferral under the New York State Deferred Compensation Plan (NYSDCP).

To ensure compliance with IRS regulations, all workers’ compensation leaves must be entered into the payroll system, including leaves for employees who remain in pay status or receive pay while charging accruals as part of their benefit. This will enable OSC to track employees on workers’ compensation, refund the taxes withheld during such period of time, and make the necessary adjustments to ensure that Deferred Compensation contributions are not withheld during periods when the employee is receiving payments while on a workers’ compensation leave.

Note: Beginning in 2015, OSC will implement payroll system changes to ensure that any payroll taxes that are withheld from payments received during the period of time on a workers’ compensation leave are refunded by OSC to affected employees within the same tax year. A separate bulletin will be issued to provide information on OSC’s processing of these refunds.

OSC Actions New Action/Reason Codes

OSC has created new action/reason codes to be used on the employees’ Job Data records to report paid workers’ compensation leaves. These codes are to be used when reporting an employee in workers’ compensation paid leave status and to reinstate employees to active status.

  • PLA/WCF –Paid Leave of Absence/ Workers Comp Leave Full
  • RFL/RCF – Return from Leave/ Workers Comp Full (To be used to return from PLA/WCF)

OSC has also created the following action/reason code to be used to report the return from Leave of employees on the existing PLA/SWC action/reason code:

  • RFL/RWC – Return  from Leave/ Workers Comp Sick Leave (To be used to return from PLA/SWC)

Existing Workers’ Compensation Action/Reason Codes

The following Workers’ Compensation Leave Action/Reason codes continue to be in effect:

  • LOA/WDL- Leave of Absence/WC DIS LV
  • LOA/WPS-  Leave of Absence/WC PT SUP
  • LTO/WCL- Long Term Disability/Workers Comp IPP
  • STO/WCL- Short Term Disability/Workers Comp IPP
  • PLA/SWC- Paid Leave of Absence/ WC Sick Leave

Effective 12/4/14, Reason codes ODL (Occ Dis Leave) and WSP (WC Sup) will be inactivated.

Deferred Compensation
Once an agency places an employee who is enrolled in the NYS Deferred Compensation Program (NYSDCP) on a paid or unpaid workers’ compensation leave of absence using any of the reason codes listed above, OSC will remove the employee from the Deferred Compensation program.

A row will automatically be inserted on the employee’s Savings Plan Elections page effective the date equal to the prior pay period end date for the employee’s pay cycle, and the Coverage Election “Terminated” radio button will be populated.

Employees will become eligible to participate in the NYSDCP upon their return from workers’ compensation leave but will need to contact the NYSDCP to re-enroll in the program.

Agency Actions Agencies must complete the following steps to report paid workers compensation leaves in the payroll system:

Reporting Information on the Incident and Injury Details Pages:
Using the Monitor Workplace path (Monitor Workplace/Monitor Health/Safety (GBL)/Use/Incident Details), the agency must report the date of accident in the Incident Date field on the Incident Details page. Then, on the Injury Details page, the agency must enter the employee’s EmplID and, in the Date Reported field, the effective date of the workers’ compensation leave.

Reporting Paid Workers’ Compensation Leave Transactions in Job Data:
Agencies must submit a transaction placing the employee on a paid workers’ compensation leave using action/reason codes PLA/WCF (Workers Comp Full) whenever an employee is absent from work on an approved workers’ compensation leave and in pay status. This includes employees charging accruals as part of their benefit.   

When the employee returns to work or is no longer eligible to receive pay related to workers’ compensation, agencies must submit a return from leave transaction using action/reason codes RFL/RWC (Return from Workers Comp Full).

Note: It is vital that agencies report the return from paid workers’ compensation leave timely to prevent the under-withholding of taxes.

The agency may then place the employee on the appropriate leave in PayServ, if necessary.

Security employees in Bargaining Units 01, 21, 31, 61, and 91 who have exhausted their paid workers’ compensation leave benefit (six months full pay, charge to accruals, and sick leave at half pay) and remain out of work due to the workers’ compensation injury must be placed on an unpaid Leave of Absence for up to the remaining balance of their one year workers’ compensation benefit using action/reason codes LOA/WDL. Once the one year benefit limit is reached, the employee’s status must be changed to a non-workers’ compensation leave.

Note: Employees on paid workers’ compensation leaves prior to Institution Pay Period 19L/20C and Administration Pay Period 20L/21C must be placed on paid workers’ compensation leave using the appropriate effective date listed below:

December 4, 2014, Institution Extra Lag
December 11, 2014, Institution Lag, Administration Extra Lag
December 18, 2014, Administration Lag
December 25, 2014, Institution Current
January 1, 2015, Administration Current

Examples:

  1. A NYSCOPBA (Bargaining Unit 01) represented employee goes on an approved workers’ compensation leave effective February 5, 2015 and returns from leave on February 16, 2015. The employee must now be placed on PLA/WCF for the period of leave as follows:

Effective 2/5/15, PLA/WCF
Effective 2/16/15, RLV/RCF

  1. A CSEA (Bargaining Unit 02) represented employee goes on an approved workers’ compensation leave on January 15, 2015 and charges accruals for five days. The employee must now be placed on PLA/WCF for the period in which leave accruals are being charged prior to being placed on LOA/WPS as follows:

Effective 1/15/15, PLA/WCF
Effective 1/22/15. RLV/RCF
Effective 1/22/15, LOA/WPS

Note: The Incident/Injury Details page must be entered for the dates of 1/15/15 and then again for 1/22/15.

  1. A NYS Trooper (Bargaining Unit 07) went on a paid workers’ compensation leave on October 21, 2014 and is still out as of the beginning of Pay Period 20L. The agency must place the employee on PLA/WCF effective December 18, 2014 as follows:

Effective 12/18/14, PLA/WCF

Deferred Compensation
Upon return from a paid workers’ compensation leave, agencies must inform the employee to contact the NYSDCP should they wish to re-enroll in the program.   

NOTE:  Please share this bulletin with the appropriate Human Resource personnel.

Questions Questions regarding this bulletin may be e-mailed to the Workers’ Compensation mailbox.