First you should “Determine Whether Your New York Business has Employees or Independent Contractors” by reading that post or consulting with a corporate attorney. If your New York business hires employees, then the following would apply.
Workers’ Compensation. The New York State Workers’ Compensation Law (“NYWCL”) requires qualifying businesses must obtain workers’ compensation insurance before putting employees to work. This insurance covers your company for employees’ personal injuries incurred in the course of employment and deaths resulting from such injuries.
Disability Benefits. The New York Disability Benefits Law (NY DBL) is a special section of the NYWCL that protects workers from non-occupational injury or sickness. If your company employs one or more employees (in covered employment) for 30 days in any calendar year, then you are subject to this law and must get protection, generally in the form of insurance, from a company authorized to write accident and health insurance in New York State, or from the New York State Insurance Fund.
Unemployment Insurance. When you start your business in New York and hire employees, you must register the New York State Department of Labor Unemployment Insurance Division to determine whether or not you are liable for unemployment insurance in New York State, and if so you can register as an employer online.
Posting Notices. Your New York business must post and maintain, in a conspicuous place, a printed notices stating that the company has: (i) complied with all the rules and regulations governing workers’ compensation, and (ii) secured the payment of compensation to your employees and their dependents as provided under the NYWCL. You can get these printed notices from your insurance carrier. Alternatively, New York State and Federal posting requirements can be found at the New York State Department of Labor and the U.S. Department of Labor. In addition, there may be special permits and/or licenses that need to be posted depending on the nature of your company’s business.
Federal Unemployment Tax. Your company is subject to federal unemployment tax if, during the current or prior year, you paid wages of $1,500 or more during any calendar quarter in the current calendar year or any calendar quarter in the preceding calendar year; or employed at least one person for some part of one day for any 20 weeks during the current or preceding calendar year. Your company will have to file with the Internal Revenue Service Form 940 and should read the instructions for “Form 940 Employer’s Annual Federal Unemployment (FUTA) Tax Return.”
Social Security. As an employer, your New York business must file an application for an employer’s identification number on IRS Form SS-4. Your New York business can apply and obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) online (sometimes it is easier to use the toll-free number).
Immigration. The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 states that all employers are required to verify employment eligibility of new employees. The law obligates all employers, including New York businesses, to process Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9.
Internal Revenue Service’s “Small Business and Self-Employed Tax Center” is an excellent site that provides links to information on employment taxes, wage reporting requirements, employer identification number (EIN) and other items of interest to New York businesses with employees.
Of course, it is best to discuss the above Employer Obligations for Employees in New York with a New York Business Attorney (or corporate attorney).