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Paying employees during the winter

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by sven1277, Mar 8, 2015.

  1. sven1277

    sven1277 Senior Member
    Messages: 478

    My employees all get laid off for the winter. I have struggled with the best way to pay them for winter plowing. In the past I have paid them a reduced cash rate as they are already getting unemployment, which I pay into. I've tracked hours and paid them at the end of the winter through normal payroll just before we start spring cleanups. The problem is my guys usually can't wait till the end of winter for that plowing income. This year I have run payroll a couple of times because of the amount of hours they have pulled in. That interferes with unemployment though. What methods do some of you guys use? I want to come up with a system that works well for everyone. I hate paying them cash for obvious tax reasons. Thanks for your input.
  2. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,216

    I would hope that the moderators delete this thread. sven1277>>> with all the hacking, NSA, etc. >>> Don't post stuff like this. You could be your own worst enemy.
  3. beanz27

    beanz27 Senior Member
    Messages: 984

    Bank hours, when they get the check they have to claim it. Some states you can make xx% of your unemployment, other states its dollar for dollar match. MN is dollar for dollar, ND you can make 60% of unemployment without them taking anything out
  4. procut

    procut Senior Member
    Messages: 902

    I think it varries state to state, but I do believe you can still have some earned income I think Michigan is or at least was 50%. So if you are collecting $300/ week unemployment you can earn up to $150. This could have changed by now.
  5. 32vld

    32vld Senior Member
    from LI, NY
    Messages: 617

    In NYS employees can collect for the whole winter and still work legally.

    What happens when the person on UI signs for their benefits every week they have to say they were willing and able to work, and sought employment.

    Then they are asked did they work during that week. For everyday they worked they lose 25% of that weeks UI check.

    So if they pick up some temp work, a days work here or there the state deducts 25% for each day they worked that week.

    So you call them in to work a storm. The storm was one shift. They report that they worked one day.

    When their UI normal $400 check comes in the direct deposit/mail it is now for $300. UI does not make them fill out any additional paper work. It does not change the length of their benefits period.

    It does not matter who they worked for or how much money that they made for that extra work.
  6. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,106

    If you mow in the summer and plow in the winter why don't you just pay them a salary, it has always bothered me when companies take advantage of loopholes in unemployment insurance to finance their business expenses. Unemployment isn't for you, it's for the worker, when you go bankrupt cause you can't figure/anticipate your costs, it's there to carry them while they find another employer. If you use it up on them during winter months their time for finding another job when you leave them high and dry is shortened and they'll end up in some min wage job to pay their bills or worse ...on the street.
  7. fireside

    fireside Senior Member
    Messages: 657

    You need to talk to your book keeper. In my state they have to claim the time worked in the pay period to umeployment. They will than reduce benifits during the next pay period. it's lots of paperwork on your end. The other problem in my state is depending on hours or income made there could be a penalty for there next pay week or reduced benifits for the 20 weeks. What your doing is against the law.
  8. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,954

    We do year round salary for a couple people...if they work over a certain # of hours per week they get paid additionally. They also spend parts of the year getting paid to stay home.
  9. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    In the bigger picture,your better paying your good workers all year. The last thing you want is for them to leave and then you need to hire new people and train them which will cost more then just paying your current guys.
  10. Plowtoy

    Plowtoy Senior Member
    Messages: 929

    I've not had employees, but have had my share of sub contractors. If they are truly your employees, why are you laying them off if you have work for them? If they are laid off from other employment, I can see their problem, but for me, it would be W-2 (if I were their employer), or 1099 if they are subbing for me. I don't do cash under the table and I do hand you a 1099 whether you wanted it or not. If they cant live off their unemployment, they need to be working a full time job somewhere they are paid weekly.
  11. Herm Witte

    Herm Witte Senior Member
    Messages: 546

    Why post if you don't know.

    In Michigan earn a dollar lose that dollar to unemployment. Not much of an incentive to work is it? I am aware that there is some discussion in Michigan's legislature to modify / change unemployment compensation as it relates to seasonal employees. I can't wait for it to happen.

    I would be real careful with this discussion.
  12. Herm Witte

    Herm Witte Senior Member
    Messages: 546

    Your signature states you have two trucks. I assume one is a spare for yourself and that you don't have an employee or subcontractor running it.
  13. procut

    procut Senior Member
    Messages: 902

    To raise my post count.
  14. On a Call

    On a Call Senior Member
    Messages: 712

    I pay mine in donuts
  15. 32vld

    32vld Senior Member
    from LI, NY
    Messages: 617

    That works for me. :rolleyes: :drinkup:
  16. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 7,920

    If there driving your truck, there an employee.
    A subcontractor doesn't drive your truck they drive their own truck.

    When hiring, ask yourself: will I be able to control when this person comes and goes (such as their hours and vacation time)? Will I have final say in what they’ll be doing and how they’ll be doing it? Will this person be hired for a non-specified time? Will I be giving them the supplies they need to do their job?( like a plow truck to drive)

    If you answered yes to these questions, odds are, you’re talking about an employee.
    "1) The extent to which the work performed is an integral part of the employer’s business. If the work performed by a worker is integral to the employer’s business, it is more likely that the worker is economically dependent on the employer and less likely that the worker is in business for himself or herself. For example, work is integral to the employer’s business if it is a part of its production process or if it is a service that the employer is in business to provide"http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs13.htm

    In MN they change the formula so often the unemployment office post this

    " You must not make more than your weekly wage allowance. In some cases, you will be able to work while collecting unemployment - but only so much per week. Make sure when you apply for unemployment that you are very clear about how much you are able to earn each week. Your unemployment counselor will be able to tell you how much this is."

    a lot of construction CO's lay off their crew in the winter then they work plowing snow in the winter as the hrs are few.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2015
  17. Plowtoy

    Plowtoy Senior Member
    Messages: 929

    Correct. Actually, I only own half of the superduty for now, my folks own the other half. They use it to tow their camper in the summer months, I use it as a back up in the winter. I refuse to offer service without a way to back myself up if I were to have a breakdown in the middle of the season, especially now that I am a one man show. Last winter was a good example, Christmas eve, The controller in my snoway burned up. The closest snoway dealer is about 30 miles away and it snowed like crazy for the next couple weeks so I didn't have time to run and get parts and fix the plow until after the new year, so I used the superduty during that time frame. It all works out, and once dad cant drive anymore (which I am afraid wont be too long from now), we will buy out their half and probably make it our primary driver instead of the wifes Impala.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2015