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I’m ready to hire employees: Now what?

I’m ready to hire employees: Now what?


According to the Illinois Department of Employment Security, there are roughly 6 million people employed in the state. Compared to a year ago, the data now reflects a nearly 1 percent increase in the number of jobs. As a business lawyer in Lake County knows, it is a good sign for the economy and for the business when hiring is on the rise.

Yet as important as it is to get and maintain employees, it is crucial to follow the right process to bringing people on board. Doing otherwise could result in fines, lawsuits or other legal problems.

Prepare for taxes

The U.S. Small Business Administration outlines a number of steps that a business owner should take prior to offering a job to someone. The first is to ensure the company has an Employer Identification Number, which may be obtained from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service. A business lawyer in Lake County would know that the number is necessary for reporting taxes to the federal government as well as reporting information about employees to state agencies.

Once the EIN is in place, the IRS requires that a business set up withholding taxes, which include the following:

  • Federal income tax withholding, submitted on a W-4
  • Federal wages and taxes, based on an employee’s W-2
  • State taxes

The government mandates that businesses keep records of these taxes for at least four years.

Secure insurance

The Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity dictates that a business hiring employees must make unemployment insurance contributions as well as secure workers’ compensation insurance. The Illinois Department of Employment Security offers a new employer packet that can assist a business owner through the process.

Protect employees and the business

Business owners who want to hire qualified employees will take on a number of tasks, such as verifying someone’s eligibility to work in the United States, running background checks and calling references. An owner may also contact the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation to ensure that someone’s professional license is valid.

In addition to protecting the business, employers are required to abide by anti-discrimination laws that protect employees. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission works to prevent people from suffering harassment, discrimination and unequal pay. Every business owner should have a firm understanding of these laws prior to bringing any employee on board, as the laws will play a key role in the hiring process.

Every Illinois employer is required to have state and federal posters displayed in the workplace. These alert workers of their rights as well as the responsibilities of their employer. The signs may be obtained by contacting the Illinois Department of Labor.

There are many other items that may come into play when hiring employees. It is important for anyone with questions regarding the process to contact a business lawyer in Lake County.

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