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Many employees may be surprised at their next paycheck— starting in January, employees will receive a 2% pay raise from the federal government. Instead of the typical 6.2% contribution to Social Security, employees will only part with 4.2% on the first $106,800 of their wages.

Innovate HR Clients will see this change automatically in January. Clients who do not outsource their payroll are mandated to change their payroll systems by February. If your company didn’t make the change by the first pay day in the New Year, you will have until March to repay your employees for the extra amount withdrawn.

Labor Law Enforcement Will Increase this Year

The Obama Administration has increased headcount in the following areas: OSHA, Wage and Hour and Benefits Administration for 2011. Auditing employee records, ensuring safety compliance and understanding the new health insurance reform regulations should be an area of focus as your company starts the new year. If you have not already done so, you should take time to talk with your benefits advisor, OSHA consultant and human resources manager to ensure that you have all areas covered this year.

FMLA Change

Congress has redefined the definition of “son or daughter” to include grandparents, non-married step-parents, same sex partners, and any other non-legal guardian to be observed with regard to FMLA compliance. Non-traditional parents of children will now have the ability to take up to 12 weeks of protected leave  under the FMLA.