OhioBWC - Basics: (Policy library) - File

Payroll True-Up


Policy Name:

Payroll True-Up

Policy #:


Code/Rule Reference:

Ohio Revised Code (ORC) 4123.26, 4123.32, 4123.41; Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) 4123-17-14, 4123-17-14.2, 4123-17-16.

Effective Date:

July 1, 2015


Employer Policy




Revised December 2, 2016; September 8, 2016; August 11, 2016. New Policy issued July 15, 2015.

Review Date:

July 1, 2017



I.       Policy Purpose


BWC requires employers to file an annual payroll true-up and reconcile premium in accordance with the applicable laws and rules.


II.     Applicability

A.     This policy applies to private employers (PA) and public employer taxing districts (PEC), authorized representatives, and all BWC staff.

B.     This policy does not apply to Self-Insuring (SI) employers and/or Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs).

III.    Definitions

A.     True-up: Annual reconciliation of estimated payroll and actual payroll. All employers must file annual payroll after the conclusion of the policy year. BWC will calculate any premium obligation or credit for the completed policy year.

B.     Grace period: A time frame during which BWC will not impose a penalty for installment payments and true-up payroll reports received after established due dates.

IV.   Policy

A.     Payroll true-up requirements.

1.     After the conclusion of each policy year, every PA and PEC employer must file an annual payroll true-up with BWC. The employer must file online at www.bwc.ohio.gov or over the phone with the BWC Call Center (1-800-644-6292).

2.     The annual payroll true-up must contain the total amount of wages paid to employees in each of the employer’s assigned manual classifications over the applicable time period. If the amount of wages is greater than zero, the employer must also report the number of employees.

3.     Employers with zero payroll must file an annual payroll true-up.

4.     Due dates:

a.     PA employers: By August 15 immediately following the conclusion of policy years ending on or after June 30, 2016.

b.     PEC employers: By February 15 immediately following the conclusion of policy years ending on or after December 31, 2016.

5.     BWC will calculate the difference between estimated gross payroll and actual gross payroll upon the filing of the annual payroll true-up by using an electronic payroll reconciliation process. This process will adjust the employer’s premium and assessments. For policy years ending June 30, 2016, for PA employers and December 31, 2016, for PEC employers, BWC will also recalculate the transition credit. See the Transition Credit policy for additional information.

a.     The employer must pay BWC any premium balance that is owed by the due date.

b.     Any credit calculated by BWC will be applied to the employer’s account and released in the normal course of business operations.

6.     BWC may establish a grace period for the filing of the annual payroll true-up and the payment of any premium balance that is due.

7.     An employer may amend its payroll by submitting the Amended Payroll Report (RPS-Amend P/R) form to BWC in writing. The amended payroll report must be submitted within the timeframe outlined in OAC 4123-17-17(C)(2).

B.     Penalties for PA and PEC employers who fail to true-up.

1.     BWC will remove the employer from all rating and discount programs for the current policy year, and

2.     BWC will not calculate any program bonus, incentive, or rebate for the most recently completed policy year, and

3.     The employer may be ineligible for future program participation, and

4.     BWC will increase by ten percent (10%) the estimated annual premium and bill the employer. BWC will certify the premium balance to the Attorney General (AG) seventy-five (75) days after the due date if not paid.

5.     BWC will not lapse the employer’s coverage.

6.     BWC will recalculate estimated annual premium (EAP) for any employer removed from a rating or discount program for the current policy year. Future installment payments will be adjusted to reflect the revised EAP.

C.    Resolution of complaints.

1.     Employer complaints should be processed under the General Employer Complaint Policy. BWC staff will refer to the following sections of the General Employer Complaint Policy:

a.     Section IV.B.3.a to IV.B.3.e for examples of extenuating circumstances that do not qualify as good cause. An employer in this circumstance may use the “Governor’s one-time forgiveness” scenario outlined below if it meets all the conditions.

b.     Section IV.D.1 to IV.D.5 for examples of extenuating circumstances that do qualify as good cause.

2.     To qualify for relief, the employer must:

a.     Have filed the annual payroll true-up and, if appropriate, paid any premium owed for the applicable policy year within fifty-nine (59) days of the due date or any established grace period.

b.     Have policy coverage that is active or reinstated.

c.      Be current with respect to all payments due BWC, as set forth in OAC 4123-17-14.

d.     Be current on the payment schedule of any part-pay agreement into which it has entered for payment of premium or assessment obligations.

D.    Governor’s one-time forgiveness (GOTF). The intent of GOTF is to implement Governor Kasich’s Executive Order 2011-01K dated January 10, 2011.

1.     Effective July 1, 2015, each employer will have one GOTF, regardless if such forgiveness was used, or unused, for a lapse that occurred prior to July 1, 2015. The GOTF may be used on or after July 1, 2015, for a:

a.     Failure to meet the payroll reporting deadline that occurred prior to June 30, 2015. (See Retroactive Coverage and Penalty Abatement policy)

b.     Default of a premium installment payment that occurs after July 1, 2015. (See Retroactive Coverage and Penalty Abatement policy)

c.      Failure to file the annual payroll true-up (see scenario below).

2.     When GOTF is used, it is no longer available to the employer. The employer may not rescind a prior GOTF.

3.     An employer requesting this relief does not waive its right to file additional requests for relief under a different extenuating circumstance in this policy.

4.     GOTF should only be used if the employer has not otherwise established good cause for the failure to true-up.

5.     Scenario: Failure to file the annual payroll true-up that occurs after July 1, 2015.

a.     BWC will allow an employer, who cannot otherwise establish good cause, to use GOTF for relief from one violation of the payroll true-up deadline and waive any other penalties associated with the violation.

b.     All of the following conditions must be met in order to grant the employer’s request:

i.       The request must be in writing and specify that the employer is requesting GOTF of the late true-up and any penalties associated with this scenario.

ii.      The employer must have filed the annual payroll true-up within fifty-nine (59) days of the due date referenced in section IV.A.4 of this policy or within fifty-nine (59) days of any established grace period.

iii.     The employer must meet all of the requirements listed in IV.C.2 of this policy.