Steps to take when you hire a new employee

This content is adapted from The Texas Workforce Commission's helpful guide to best practices regarding the hiring of new employees. 

In addition to the new hire paperwork, the following are additional steps the employer must take at the time of hire:

  • Enter the employee into the payroll system. An employee ID should be an alpha-numeric identifier other than the employee's Social Security number. Both government agencies and private-sector experts advise employers to minimize the use of SSNs for anything other than wage reporting and payroll tax purposes.
  • Make a new hire report within 20 days of hire on this state portal.
  • Sign the employee up for any insurance or other benefits the company may offer.
  • Issue the employee any ID or access cards needed to access company facilities.
  • Issue company equipment, uniforms, and other items. consider using a property return security deposit agreement to minimize the risk of damage or non-return of such property.

TWC New Hire Guide

Required Paperwork for Employers and Employees

Collect all required paperwork for new employees

This content is modified from The Texas Workforce Commission's helpful guide to best practices regarding paperwork required to hire new employees. 

When hiring a new employee, certain paperwork must be completed by both the company and the employee. The best time to obtain this paperwork is just before the start of employment. An office manager, human resources representative or other appropriate employee should meet with the new hire before any work begins and have them complete the various forms. These documents include the following:

Required Documents: 

  • I-9 form - all new hires are required to complete this form in order to document that they are authorized to work in the United States.
  • W-4 form - obtains basic payroll tax information about an employee and lets the company know how many exemptions to use when computing withholding tax for IRS purposes (download the form here).
  • DOL Notice regarding the Health Insurance Marketplace. 
  • Notice of Workers' Compensation Coverage - the company must notify new hires whether it carries workers' compensation insurance or not. Provide either the Notice of Coverage (English or Spanish) or the Notice of Non-Coverage (English or Spanish).
  • Consent for background checks - it is recommended (but not required) that any background checks are completed before making a hiring decision. Prior notice and consent are required under the Fair Credit Reporting Act if the check is done by an outside, for-profit service (an alternative form is here).

Optional Documents:

TWC New Hire Guide

Report Newly Hired Employees

Federal and state laws require you to provide information about any new or rehired workers in any state to the Employer New Hire Reporting Operations Center of the Texas Office of the Attorney General. If the employee is required to fill out a W-4 form, you must report hiring that employee. Employers that do not report new hires will be fined $25 for each occurrence, or a penalty of $500 for conspiring with an employee to fail to file a report or submit a false or incomplete report.

The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 requires employers to report new hires and rehires no later than 20 calendar days after the hire date.

This new hire reporting is separate from quarterly wage reporting to the Texas Workforce Commission.

How to Report

The Child Support Division of the Office of the Attorney General is the designated agency for new hire reporting in Texas. You can report new hire information online, through file uploads, or by mail, fax or phone.

For details about new hire reporting requirements, methods and resources, visit the Texas Attorney General’s website on New Hire reporting.

Helpful Tips

  • Report new employees as soon as they are hired.
  • If you are reporting for the first time, you should report all employees hired within the last 90 days.
  • Use the same FEIN to report new hires and quarterly wage information. This reduces the possibility of receiving duplicate Income Withholding Order/Notices.
  • If you are a multi-state employer, choose Texas as your reporting state. This is the only way the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) receives new hire information on Texas residents who may be receiving unemployment benefits and working for a multi-state employer.
  • Report online to reduce paper and postage costs, staff time and increase quality of data submitted.
  • View a history of reported employees for up to 8 hours or 90 days.
  • Employer child support questions can be answered by calling the Employer Call Center at (800) 850-6442.

This content is adapted from the TWC's website on New Hire Reporting.