NEW HIRE REPORTING

Federal and State law require employers to report newly hired and rehired employees to a central registry. New hire reporting and the Centralized Employee Registry (CER) were created to help state child support agencies do two things (1) locate parents who owe support, and (2) speed up the payment of support through income withholding. New hire reporting to the registry has been successful in meeting these objectives. The section below explains how new hire reporting works in Iowa. It also explains the employer's responsibilities for reporting new hires and rehires.

How to Report New Hires

What is the Centralized Employee Registry (CER)?

The CER is a computer database that keeps track of newly hired and rehired employees and contractors in Iowa. The information you provide to the CER helps streamline the process of withholding child support payments from the income of employees and contractors.

How do I report employees and contractors to the CER?

From this web site, click on the employer’s Iowa Child Support link, which takes you to that web site. Here, you can enter your new hire information or print forms that are used to report new hire information. Other ways of reporting new hire information are computer printouts containing the same information as the forms, diskettes, CDs, or computer cartridges.

Where should I send CER information?

Send CER reports to the address or facsimile numbers below.

CER
PO Box 10322
Des Moines, IA 50306-0322

1-800-759-5881
            or
515-281-3749 (local calls)

http://icer.dhs.state.ia.us/

Who and When to Report

What are the requirements for reporting employees?

You must report the employee hire or rehire within 15 days of the hire or rehire date. If reporting by magnetic tape or electronically, you may report through transmissions which are not less than 12, nor more than 16 days apart.

What are the requirements for reporting contractors?

Report contractors within 15 days of the date on which BOTH of the following conditions are met:

  1. Payment to the contractor under an agreement/contract occurs more frequently than a lump sum payment paid once in a calendar year; and
  2. A single payment for at least one of the agreements/contracts between the payor and contractor is issued to the contractor in an amount which exceeds what is required for 1099-MISC filing (currently $600).

If reporting by magnetic tape or electronically, you may report through transmissions which are not less than 12, nor more than 16 days apart.

Once you have reported a contractor to CER, you are not required to report the same contractor again.

What is the definition of "contractor" for the purpose of new hire reporting?

A contractor is someone:

What is the definition of "employee" for the purpose of new hire reporting?

An employee is someone:

What is meant by "rehire" for the purpose of new hire reporting?

An employee is considered to be rehired on the first day on which the employee is owed compensation by the employer following a termination of employment lasting a minimum of six consecutive weeks.

Unpaid medical leave, unpaid leave of absence, and temporary layoff do not count as termination of employment. Termination of employment means the employer no longer provides income to the employee, and the employer does not intend to provide income to the employee again in the future.

Should I report employees from a temporary employment agency that work for me?

If you hire workers from a temporary agency, it is the responsibility of the temporary agency to report the new employee to CER.

Completing the CER Form for Employees and Contractors

Who should complete the CER form?

You or your staff should complete the form. If an accounting or payroll firm completes the form, the actual employer's name must be listed under the employer section.

What information should be completed on the form?

Complete all of the information for both the employer and the employee sections for each individual reported.

How do I answer question "A" which asks, "Is dependent health insurance available"?

If your company has a family health insurance policy available to the employee, regardless of the cost to the employee, check "yes." If not, check "no."

Should I complete both the employee and contractor forms on each individual I report?

Complete only one or the other, never both.

Is the date of birth required when I report a contractor?

The contractor's date of birth is required only when you know it. You do not have to ask for this information if the contractor does not provide it.

What record layout should I use if I want to report employees and contractors electronically?

Following are the input record characteristics (for both reel and cartridge tapes) and lengths for the transfer of data to the Centralized Employee Registry:

Input characteristics for REEL tapes:

-Data Set Name: CER.Report
-Configuration: IBM, 9-track, odd parity
-Character Code: EBCDIC
-Recording Density: 1600 or 6250 BPI
-Format: IBM Standard Format
-Record Size: 250
-Blocking Factor: 49
-Block Size: 12250

Input characteristics for CARTRIDGE Tapes:

-Data Set Name: CER.Report
-Configuration: IBM, 3480 18-track compatible
-Character Code: EBCDIC
-Format: IBM Standard Format
-Record Size: 250
-Blocking Factor: 49
-Block Size: 12250

POSITION FIELD NAME LENGTH FIELD TYPE REMARKS
1 'A' Employer Data 01 A "A" identifies employer data
2-33 Employer name 32 A/N  
34-65 Employer address-1 32 A/N mailing address
66-97 Employer address-2 32 A/N  
98-113 Employer city 16 A  
114-115 Employer state 02 A 2-letter state abbreviation
116-120 Employer Zip code-1 05 N 5-digit ZIP code
121-124 Employer Zip code-2 04 N 4-digit ZIP code--enter zeros if unknown
125-136 Employer federal ID 12 N Number assigned by the federal government + 3-digit Iowa suffix
137-168 Employer IW address-1 32 A/N Address where income withholding forms to be sent--leave 137-227 blank if same as 34-124
169-200 Employer IW address-2 32 A/N  
201-216 Employer IW city 16 A  
217-218 Employer IW state 02 A  
219-223 Employer Zip code-1 05 N 5-digit ZIP code
224-227 Employer Zip code-2 04 N 4-digit ZIP code--enter zeros if unknown
228-237 Employer telephone number 10 N 3-digit area code and 7-digit telephone number
238-250 Filler   A/N Additional space

 

POSITION FIELD NAME LENGTH FIELD TYPE REMARKS
1 'B' Employee Data 01 A "B" identifies employee data
2-17 Employee last name 16 A  
18-32 Employee first name 15 A  
33-47 Employee middle name 15 A  
48-55 Employee date of birth 08 N CCYYMMDD
56-64 Employee social security number 09 N  
65-96 Employee address-1 32 A/N  
97-128 Employee address-2 32 A/N  
129-144 Employee city 16 A  
145-146 Employee state 2 A 2-letter state abbreviation
147-151 Employee Zip code-1 5 N 5-digit ZIP code
152-155 Employee Zip code-2 4 N 4-digit ZIP code--enter zeros if unknown
156 Dependent health insurance available 1 A Dependent health insurance available?--Y or N
157-164 Approximate date employee qualifies for family health insurance 8 N CCYYMMDD. Enter zeros if no insurance available or employee will not qualify for coverage. Does not relate to insurability.
165-172 Employee start date 8 N CCYYMMDD. The first day the employee earns wages
173-250 Filler   A/N Additional space

 

POSITION FIELD NAME LENGTH FIELD TYPE REMARKS
1 'C' Payor of Income Data 01 A/N "C" identifies payor of income data
2-11 Payor of income telephone number 10 N 3-digit area code and 7-digit telephone number
12-23 Payor of income federal ID number 12 N Employer number assigned by federal government + 3-digit Iowa suffix
24-55 Payor of income name 32 A/N  
56-87 Payor of income address 32 A/N Mailing address-line 1
88-119 Payor of income address 32 A/N street address-line 2
120-135 Payor of income city 16 A/N  
136-137 Payor of income state 02 A/N 2-letter state abbreviation
138-142 Payor of income Zip Code-1 05 N 5-digit ZIP code
143-146 Payor of income Zip Code-2 04 N 4-digit ZIP code--enter zeros if unknown
147-250 Filler   A/N  

 

POSITION FIELD NAME LENGTH FIELD TYPE REMARKS
1 'D' Contractor Data 01 A/N "D" identifies contractor data
2-17 Contractor last name 16 A/N  
18-32 Contractor first name 15 A/N  
33-47 Contractor middle name 15 A/N  
48-55 Contractor date of birth 08 N CCYYMMDD
56-64 Contractor social security number 09 N  
65-96 Contractor address 1 32 A/N  
97-128 Contractor address 2 32 A/N  
129-144 Contractor city 16 A/N  
145-146 Contractor state 2

A/N

2-letter state abbreviation
147-151 Contractor Zip code - 1 5 N 5-digit ZIP code
152-155 Contractor Zip code - 2 4 N 4-digit ZIP code--enter zeros if unknown
156-163 Date service contracted 8 N CCYYMMDD. First day the contractor is owed payment.
164-250 Filler   A/N Additional space

 

How to Get CER Forms

How can I get employee and contractor forms?

You may call the Department of Revenue:

1-800-367-3388 to receive forms by mail
1-800-532-1531 to receive bulk orders of forms by mail
1-800-572-3943 to receive forms by FAX

You may also ask for these forms by calling EPICS at 1-877-274-2580.

Comparing Iowa Law to the Federal Law

You may have received the New Hire Reporting brochure from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services which explains changes in federal new hire law. When state law differs from federal law, you must follow Iowa law regarding new hires. Iowa and federal new hire law differ as follows:

Federal law requires the reporting of the employer's name, address, and federal identification number and employee's name, address and social security number.

Verifying Income

May I charge for verifying income?

Title 45 of Code of Federal Regulations, section 303.30, requires CSRU to get employment and health insurance information about a non-custodial parent. There is no provision in federal or state law for CSRU to pay a fee to obtain this information, and there is no provision for employers to charge a fee for providing this information.