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The University of Arkansas recognizes our employees as our greatest asset. Find out how you can contribute to our community by searching careers. Discover how Human Resources guides and supports employees by advocating for a healthy work/life balance and providing excellent benefits. Explore what makes the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, and Northwest Arkansas a top-ranked place to work and live.
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HR News 2018
Changes to UA Retirement Plan and Health Coverage Plan
The following changes for the UA Retirement Plan and Health Coverage Plan will go into effect July 1, 2018. See notice mailed to employees’ home addresses for the new 7/1/2018 health coverage premiums.
The required employee contribution to the UA Retirement Plan will increase from 2% to 3%.
- As announced previously in the spring of 2016 and 2017, the required employee retirement contribution will increase by 1% each July 1 through July 1, 2020, until we get to the maximum required employee contribution of 5%.
- The required contribution must be tax-deferred. Employees making after-tax Roth contributions will find that the first 3% of their contributions will be categorized as tax-deferred required and any additional voluntary contributions Roth after-tax. Your total contribution will not increase.
- Employees currently contributing less than 3% will have their contributions increased to 3%.
Total UA Health Coverage premiums increase by 1%.
- No increases to co-payments or deductibles and no changes in plan design for 7/1/2018.
As announced last fall, the UA System is beginning a three-year process of reducing the subsidy (employer contribution) for health coverage for all Family Coverage tiers (Employee/Spouse, Employee/Children and Employee/Spouse/Children).
- The reduction in the employer subsidy will occur each July 1 through July 1, 2020. This reduction in the employer subsidy was announced to all employees during the November 2017 Open Enrollment period and samples of the July 1, 2018, premiums were available.
- The majority of the health plan costs continue to be paid by the University. UA System-wide in 2017, the University contributed about $125M toward the cost of health care and employees contributed about $36M. Prior to January 2018, UAF paid on average 81% of the cost of coverage monthly premiums. While this employer subsidy is in line for “employee-only” coverage with those paid by other employers in the community and across the region, it is much higher than those employer contributions paid by other employers for dependent coverage. The average employer subsidy for dependent coverage for our peer group ranges from 62% to 72%.
- The University works to provide a competitive, sustainable Health Plan and addressing dependent subsidies supports those efforts. Adjusting subsidy levels may help the University avoid considering a Working Spouse Exclusion or an overall Spouse Exclusion again in the immediate future.
- Even after all these changes, the University is still paying a major portion of the total monthly premium cost. And with this change the costs to employees will remain very competitive with the costs at other employers in Arkansas and across the region.
- Chancellor Steinmetz plans to redirect any savings realized by the Fayetteville Campus from the transition in the subsidy for all Family Coverage tiers into a pool for employee salaries.
No changes to Dental, Life and Disability Insurance premiums or coverage for 7/1/2018.
Contact Human Resources at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Join us on March 26th and March 27th for a demonstration on Workday Core Financials, Procurement, Budget and Planning. These demonstrations will be broadcast through Zoom and will also be on display in the Reynold's Center Auditorium - Room 120.
Workday Demonstraton - Core Financials
Monday March 26th, 2018 10am - 12pm
Join URL: https://workday.zoom.us/j/364495167
Conference Line: +18773690926
Code: 364 495 167#
iPhone one-tap: +18778535247,,364495167#
Workday Demonstraton - Procurement
Monday March 26th, 2018 1:30pm - 3:30pm
Join URL: https://workday.zoom.us/j/945433105
Conference Line: +18773690926
Code: 945 433 105#
iPhone one-tap: +18778535247,, 945433105#
Workday Demonstraton -Budgeting & Planning / Open Financial Q & A
Tuesday March 27th, 2018 9am - 11am
Conference Line: 1-877-853-5247
Code: 557 173 507
iPhone one-tap: +16699006833,,557173507#
Did you miss the Human Capital Management Workday Demonstration? If so, you can view the recordings here: https://uark.box.com/v/Workday-HCM
If you have questions about these demonstrations, please contact Shannon Phillips at email@example.com or 479-575-6981.
The IRS has released the 2018 W-4, and has updated the IRS withholding calculator in order to assist taxpayers to determine the appropriate withholding allowances for the 2018 tax year.
While the IRS has stated that employees are not required to make any changes or submit a new 2018 W-4 form, it is strongly advised that employees review their withholding to make sure that it is accurate.
The IRS withholding calculator (to aid with determining the correct withholdings) can be found at the following link: IRS tax withholding calculator
Take a few minutes and plan ahead to make using the calculator on IRS.gov as easy as possible.
- Gather your most recent pay stub from work. Check to make sure it reflects the amount of Federal income tax that you have had withheld so far in 2018.
- Have a completed copy of your 2017 (or possibly 2016) tax return handy. Information on that return can help you estimate income and other items for 2018. However, note that the new tax law made significant changes to itemized deductions.
- Keep in mind the Withholding Calculator results are only as accurate as the information entered. If your circumstances change during the year, come back to the calculator to make sure your withholding is still correct.
- The Withholding Calculator does not request personally-identifiable information such as name, Social Security number, address or bank account numbers. The IRS does not save or record the information entered on the calculator. As always, watch out for tax scams, especially via email or phone calls and be especially alert to cybercriminals impersonating the IRS. The IRS does not send emails related to the calculator or the information entered.
- Use the results from the Withholding Calculator to determine if you should complete a new Form W-4 and, if so, what information to put on a new Form W-4. There is no need to complete the worksheets that accompany Form W-4 if the calculator is used.
- As a general rule, the fewer withholding allowances you enter on the Form W-4 the higher your tax withholding will be. Entering "0" or "1" on line 5 of the W-4 means more tax will be withheld. Entering a bigger number means less tax withholding, resulting in a smaller tax refund or potentially a tax bill or penalty.
- If you complete a new Form W-4, you should submit it to your employer as soon as possible. With withholding occurring throughout the year, it’s better to take this step early on. University employees may download and complete a Form W-4 and forward it to Human Resources in room 222 of the Administration Bldg. (ADMN 222)
- University employees may complete a new Form W-4 online through webBASIS by following these steps: Login utilizing Employee/Affiliate Access → My Pay → Income Tax Withholding (W4) → Check box □ after you have "Read W4 → Make any changes to Federal or State Income Taxing Options → Click Validate → Check box □ "Under penalties of perjury, I declare that" → Then click "SAVE" to make your changes.
The University of Arkansas is not legally allowed to provide any form of tax advice. We strongly encourage you to speak directly with your personal tax advisor if you have questions regarding how the Tax Cuts & Job Act and the new withholding tables will affect you.
You may notice a change to your tax withholding and net paycheck amount for pay periods beginning in February 2018. This change is due to updated Internal Revenue Service (IRS) withholding amounts based on the approved tax reform. Most employees will likely see a decrease in taxes withheld and an increase in take-home pay.
You may view your future pay by logging into WebBASIS Employee/Affiliate Access, clicking on My Pay → Future Pay→ Gross Pay (For future pay date).
The IRS is continuing to update employers on the impact of this tax reform and we will continue to monitor and update you as needed.
IRS links for additional information:
- IRS Updated 2018 Withholding Table news release IRS News (explains about the new tax tables and that the IRS is working on a revised 2018 W-4 and withholding calculator)
- IRS Withholding FAQ’s IRS FAQ
- IRS Notice 1036 – Early Release Copies of the 2018 Percentage Method Tables for Income Tax Withholding IRS Tax Tables and other changes
If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Human Resources - Payroll Experts.
Please read this message if you plan to use the Dependent Tuition Waiver Benefit on the Fayetteville Campus.
This message is being sent to clarify that, for the purposes of the Dependent Tuition Waiver Benefit, the student must be your lawful spouse or a dependent child as defined by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). A dependent child per the IRS is a full-time student under the age of 24 at the end of the year or the student is permanently or totally disabled.
Human Resources recently conducted a review of dependent tuition waiver benefits to confirm individuals receiving the benefit meet eligibility requirements. During the review, we determined that many employees were not clear on this requirement.
Consistent with Board Policy 440.1 , Fayetteville Policies and Procedures 512.0, and the Certification section of the Dependent Tuition Waiver form (copied below), you may be requested to furnish documentation to confirm your dependent’s eligibility, so we are writing to let you know now how eligibility for the dependent tuition waivers will be determined.
Enrollment records for university insurance benefits with spouse coverage (health, dental or vision) will be reviewed to verify lawful spouse status. If lawful spouse status cannot be verified through the university’s benefits records, you will be asked to submit a copy of your marriage license or a *copy of a current Federal or State Income tax return indicating married status and listing your spouse. University benefits records cannot be used to verify tuition waiver eligibility for a dependent child because the dependent eligibility requirements are not the same.
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) records on our campus will be used to confirm eligibility of your dependent child(ren). You are encouraged to complete the FAFSA each academic year your dependent child(ren) will be enrolled and eligible for the tuition waiver. If you choose not to complete the FAFSA, you will be required to submit a *copy of a current income tax return.
Human Resources will continue to verify eligibility requirements for the tuition waiver benefits each semester. If spouse or dependent eligibility cannot be confirmed as stated above, you will be required to submit the appropriate documentation for your student to receive the tuition waiver.
If you have any questions, please contact Amber Duncan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 575-2761.
Human Resources is mailing 2017 W-2s for your security.
All 2017 Form W-2s have been printed and will be mailed to the home address on record in BASIS. We expect W-2s to mailed by Friday, January 19th.
Current employees can log into WebBASIS to check their address. Previous employees may send an email to Shane Lewis, email@example.com, with a request to check their address. The request must include information to verify identity, such as a university ID number, address on file, or the name of the emergency contact on record.
If your address in BASIS is not your current address, your W2 will be returned to Human Resources. All undeliverable W-2s returned to Human Resources can be picked-up in room 222 of the Administration Building. It could take a couple of weeks after being mailed, for W-2s to be returned. A photo ID is required to pick up a returned W-2.
Duplicate W-2s can be ordered beginning mid-February.
Frequently Asked Questions?
What does the special coding in Box 14 MANRETR on the W-2 mean? This is the code for the employee’s required retirement contribution.
Why does the W-2 not match my salary? Salary is Fiscal year, W-2s are Calendar year.
How can I pick up my returned W-2? Returned W-2s can be picked up in ADMN 222 with a picture ID.
Can I obtain my W-2 electronically this year? No. For your security we are mailing W-2s to home addresses and we are not providing electronic W-2s.
For further questions regarding W-2s please contact Eva Cordero, Human Resources Office Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HR News 2017
The University of Arkansas Staff Senate, in collaboration with the Human Resources department conducted a confidential online Staff Campus Climate Survey in May 2017.
In order to save energy and reduce heating and other costs, the Fayetteville campus of the University of Arkansas will be closed, except for essential operations, beginning Friday, December 22, 2017. The campus will re-open on Tuesday, January 2, 2018.
Some of the days during this period are official state holidays, which will be recognized as follows: Christmas Eve (December 22), Christmas Day (December 25), in lieu of Veteran’s Day (December 26), In lieu of employee’s birthday (December 27), and New Year's Day (January 1). Two days, December 28 and 29 would ordinarily be charged to employees' annual leave. However, Governor Hutchinson has granted the University permission to allow 12 month UA employees, who do not have enough accumulated time or do not wish to use their annual leave on those days to work extra hours, as needed, during the earlier part of December 2017, to avoid being charged annual leave for December 28 and 29.
The number of extra hours employees will need to work will depend on whether they are exempt or non-exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
- Employees who are exempt under the FLSA (that is, not entitled to compensatory time off or overtime pay for hours over 40 worked in any work week) may work an extra 16 hours earlier in December, at their department's convenience to avoid using annual leave.
- Employees who are not exempt under the FLSA (that is, who are entitled to compensatory time off or overtime pay for hours over 40 worked in any work week, at a rate of one-and-one-half hours for each hour worked in excess of 40 hours) may accumulate an additional 16 hours of compensatory time by working a total of 10 hours and 40 minutes that would qualify as compensatory time earlier in December, at their department's convenience, to avoid using annual leave.
- Employees who do not wish to work extra hours earlier in December may use annual leave (for both exempt and non-exempt employees) or regular compensatory time off (for non-exempt employees).
Employees are responsible for arranging their schedules with their supervisor prior to December to work the extra hours. Departments are asked to accommodate employees who wish to work extra hours in order to avoid using annual leave. Employees who have 256 vacation hours or more, should not work the extra time, due to losing vacation hours going into 2018. Deans and directors must demonstrate to the appropriate vice chancellor why accommodations are not feasible where they are requested and denied.
Human Resources is providing the following information to help you prepare for the 2017 tax season.
Sign in to the Employee/Affiliate Access using your UARK (email) ID and Password.
Click on “My Personal Data”
Click on “Addresses, etc.”
Enter any changes to your information.
Scroll to bottom of page and click on “Validate”
If no errors, click on “Save”
IRS YouTube Video:
IR-2017-181, Oct. 30, 2017
WASHINGTON — As the end of 2017 approaches, the Internal Revenue Service today encouraged taxpayers to consider a tax withholding checkup. Taking a closer look at the taxes being withheld now can help ensure the right amount is withheld, either for tax refund purposes or to avoid an unexpected tax bill next year.
The withholding review takes on even more importance given a tax law change that started last year. This change requires the IRS to hold refunds a few weeks for some early filers claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Additional Child Tax Credit. In addition, the IRS and state tax administrators continue to strengthen identity theft and refund fraud protections, which means some tax returns could require additional review time next year to protect against fraud.
"With only a few months left in the year, this is a good time to check on your withholding," said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. "How much you choose to withhold is a personal choice, but checking now can reduce the chance for a surprise tax bill when you file in 2018."
By adjusting the Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate, taxpayers can ensure that the right amount is taken out of their pay throughout the year. Having the correct amount withheld from paychecks helps to ensure that taxpayers don’t pay too much tax during the year – and it also means taxpayers have money upfront rather than waiting for a bigger refund after filing their tax return.
The IRS also cautions people to be careful and check to make sure they have enough withheld from their paychecks. Under-withholding can lead to a tax bill as well as an additional penalty. The IRS especially encourages people with a second job, such as those in the sharing economy, or with a major life change to check whether they are having enough withheld or if they are making the appropriate estimated tax payments.
In many cases, a new Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate, is all that is needed to make an adjustment. Taxpayers submit it to their employer, and the employer uses the form to figure the amount of federal income tax to be withheld from pay. But remember – it takes time for employers to process these payroll changes, so any adjustments should be made quickly so it can take affect during the final pay periods of 2017.
The IRS offers several online resources to help taxpayers bring taxes paid closer to what is owed. They are available anytime on IRS.gov. They include:
- IRS Withholding Calculator – Online tool helps determine the correct amount of tax to withhold.
- IRS Publication 505 – Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax.
- Tax Withholding – Complete information on withholding, estimated taxes, FAQs and more.
Self-employed taxpayers, including those involved in the sharing or gig economy, can use the Form 1040-ES worksheet to correctly figure their estimated tax payments. If they also work for an employer, they can often forgo making these quarterly payments by instead having more tax taken out of their pay.
People Working in the Sharing Economy
The IRS encourages people in the sharing or ‘gig’ economy who also have a job with an employer to take a close look at their withholding. Doing so can help avoid unexpected tax issues.
Some Refunds Delayed in 2018
The IRS wants taxpayers to be aware of several factors that could affect the timing of their tax refunds next year. Due to a December 2015 law, the IRS cannot issue refunds on tax returns claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit before mid-February. Under the change required by Congress in the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act, the IRS must hold the entire refund – even the portion not associated with the EITC and ACTC.
This law change, which went into effect in 2017, helps ensure that taxpayers get the refund they are owed by giving the IRS more time to help detect and prevent fraud.
Stronger Security Filters and Tax Refund Processing
As the IRS steps up its efforts to combat identity theft and tax refund fraud through its many processing filters, legitimate refund returns sometimes get delayed. While the IRS is working diligently to stop fraudulent refunds from being issued, it is also focused on releasing legitimate refunds as quickly as possible.
The IRS, state tax agencies and the private sector tax industry continue to work together to fight fraud through their Security Summit partnership. Additional safeguards will be set in place for the 2018 filing season.
HR Training and Events
Please visit the EDP Training Calendar for registration. Classes begin on September 20th. Limited seats are available. Any further questions can be addressed with Valerie Casey at 575-5351 or by email at email@example.com.