Entries with Topic Press Release .

September 18, 2018

Webinar Recording Unveils Unemployment & HR Risk Management Tips for Nonprofits

UST offers their highest attended webinar- learn more about the unique tax alternative provided to 501(c)(3) nonprofits.

UST, a program dedicated to providing nonprofits with dedicated HR support and educational tools, presents a short on-demand webinar to showcase some of the most common unemployment & HR risks that are costing nonprofits thousands of dollars annually.

UST shares insights into their many service offerings as well as best practices that can help reduce costs and streamline workforce processes.

This educational webinar also teaches nonprofits about:

  • Reducing unemployment tax liability as a 501(c)(3)
  • Self-funded reserves and insurance options
  • Ensuring compliance with state and federal law
  • Efficiently managing unemployment claims, protests, and hearings
  • Avoiding costly HR mistakes
  • Importance of onboarding and professional training
  • Enhancing goodwill by utilizing outplacement services

"Whether your primary focus to protect your assets, ensure compliance, reduce unemployment costs or to simply allocate more time and money to your mission-driven initiatives, this webinar can provide invaluable insight that can help you to refocus your funding and employee bandwidth on the communities you serve,” said Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST.

This webinar will also explore UST's holistic program, which is already helping more than 2,200 participating nonprofits lower their unemployment and HR liability. If you work for a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with 10 or more full time employees, be sure to watch this webinar today!

September 05, 2018

Nonprofits Experience $26.2 Million in Unemployment Claims Savings with UST Program

Utilizing State-Specific Unemployment Claims Administration, UST Participants Save More than $26.2 Million on Unemployment Claim Costs.

Founded by nonprofits for nonprofits—UST, a program dedicated to helping nonprofits reduce paperwork burdens and protect assets, today announced it has identified $24,950,103 in unemployment cost savings plus an additional $1,259,711 in errors that are refunded to UST participants.

For 35 years, UST has been helping 501(c)(3) organizations exercise their exclusive nonprofit tax alternative, as allowed by Federal law, to pay only for their own unemployment claims which can save them thousands annually. Because they are no longer subsidizing for-profit companies in the state tax system, and are receiving expert claims guidance, UST members can efficiently manage their unemployment claims while mitigating liability.

UST participants are able to efficiently combat improper unemployment claims, meet important deadlines and prepare for claims hearings by utilizing their state-specific claims representative—helping them to avoid costly penalties while offsetting the administrative headache. UST’s claims administrator equips more than 2,200 participating nonprofits with the guidance and resources they need to confidently manage their claims process.

“Being in the nonprofit sector, employee bandwidth and funding can often be stretched thin and UST is able to provide its members with significant funds in these times of need,” says Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST. “Helping to filter this money goes right back into the nonprofit community—strengthening the missions’ of nonprofits—is what the UST program is all about.”

Whether you’re a tax-rated or reimbursing employer, UST can help protect your funding and simplify your claims management processes. If you’re a 501(c)(3) looking for ways to help your nonprofit save money for 2019, benchmark your unemployment costs by filling out a free Unemployment Cost Analysis form by November 15.

September 13, 2018

[Webinar Recording] Exclusive Ways for Nonprofits to Fund Health and Unemployment Insurance

[Webinar Recording] Exclusive Ways for Nonprofits to Fund Health and Unemployment Insurance

UST has partnered with mission-driven health insurance broker Nonstop Administration & Insurance Services, Inc. (Nonstop) to offer an educational webinar recording that is designed to showcase insights and proven solutions aimed at lowering costs, mitigating risk and improving health equity for staff. 

UST and Nonstop know that the traditional models of health and unemployment insurance are cost-prohibitive for many nonprofits. That’s why their co-created webinar recording addresses these challenges by providing the following key takeaways:

  • Exposure to different funding models for two budget line items that impact your bottom line and your HR team
  • How to look beyond traditional insurance funding models to find alternative solutions
  • What you can do to increase employee retention and recruitment while also keeping organizational costs down

If you're responsible for the financial management of a nonprofit with 10 or more employees, watch the webinar recording here: bit.ly/2p5UhvC

The largest nonprofit unemployment trust in the nation, UST helps 501(c)(3) organizations nationwide save time and money through a host of workfroce management solutions that include - unemployment claims management, cash flow protection, HR Workplace assistance, outplacement services and more. The company services nonprodits from all sectors with 10 or more full-time employees. UST encourafes nonprofits that are currently tax-rated or direct reimbursing on their own to review their options as they may be over-paying.

Headquarted in the San Francisxo Bay Area, Nonstop Administration & Insurance Services, Inc. is proudly changing the way nonprofits and their employees access healthcare with a partially self-funded health insurance program called Nonstop Wellness. The Nonstop Wellness program decreases the annual costs of healthcare for nonprofits while reducing or eliminating copays, deductibles and coinsurance. Nonstop's mission is to ensure nonprofit;s growht and statinabilitystarting with health wellbeing of others.

November 29, 2016

Tips for Handling Employee Pay Issues Caused by Mother Nature

Although warmer weather is on the way for most organizations across the U.S. it's always the right season to think about how to handle employee relations and pay issues that arise when your organization is forced to close due to inclement weather.

What should an employer do? Pay employees to stay at home? After all, in most cases, they are not at work through no fault of their own. Many businesses, however, do not have the financial resources to pay employees not to work. What follows are the rules regarding paying employees who miss work due to Mother Nature, along with some practical tips. From an employee relations perspective, the more generous you can afford to be to your employees who are suffering as a result of a weather-related disaster, the better. Employees (and their families) do pay attention to how they are treated, and a little extra time off and compassion for individual circumstances can go a long way towards enhancing employee loyalty.

If the company has no power and sends employees home for the day, should they be paid? And does it matter if the employee is exempt or nonexempt?

In general, there are two sets of rules for paying employees depending upon their classification under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as it relates to eligibility for overtime. With nonexempt employees (those eligible for overtime pay), there is no obligation under federal or state law to pay for time not worked. However, under certain state laws, employers may have an obligation to compensate nonexempt employees under call-in/reporting pay laws, especially if the employees were not advised that they should not report to work and were denied work upon arrival at the workplace.

These pay obligations vary by state. With respect to salaried exempt employees who must be paid on a “salary basis” under the FLSA, employers may not make salary deductions for absences that result from an employer’s partial-week closing of operations, including closings due to weather-related emergencies or disasters. The bottom line is that exempt employees must be paid their full salary if they perform any work in a workweek and only miss work time due to the employer’s closure of operations. Closures for a full workweek need not be paid if no work is performed.

Are these rules different if the company can tell the employee not to come to work the next day?

For nonexempt employees, if they are told in advance not to come to work and the employees stay home, then the employer is under no obligation to pay them for the time off. The employer and the employee can choose to use accrued paid time off to compensate the employee for the missed workdays.

For exempt employees, the “salary basis” rule still applies. In some cases, the employee may be working from home during the bad weather days. If state laws permit employers to do so, employers may deduct from the exempt employees’ accrued paid time off balances to resolve the issues related to “salary basis” compliance. The employer should ensure, however, that these employees have not done any work from home during the office closure prior to deducting time from the accrued paid time off bank balances.

If an employee is on Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave, do those “bad weather days” count against the employee’s 12-week allotment of time off?

The FMLA regulations are silent about bad weather office closures. However, the regulations do allow for situations when the employer’s business stops operating for a period of time and employees are not expected to come to work (plants closing for a few weeks to retool, mandatory company-wide summer vacation, etc.). In that case, the week the business is closed and no employees are reporting to work would not count against the employee’s FMLA leave entitlement. If the business is closed for a shorter period of time, the general thinking is that the FMLA regulations relating to holidays would likely apply. Under those rules, if the business is closed for a day or two during a week in which the employee is on FMLA leave, then the entire week would count against the employee’s FMLA leave entitlement. If, however, the employee is on intermittent FMLA leave, then only the days that the business is closed and the employee is expected to be at work would count against the leave entitlement.

How do we handle attendance issues where the office is open but public transportation is not available due to the weather and employees cannot come to work?

If the business remains open but employees cannot get to work because of the weather, employers will need to consider their own attendance policies and practices in determining what flexibility to give employees as it relates to attendance. Employers may encourage employees to car pool or assist them in establishing alternative methods of transportation to get to work.

Under the FLSA rules as they relate to pay, however, employers do not need to pay nonexempt employees if they perform no work. For exempt employees, if the business remains open but an employee cannot get to work because of the weather, an employer can deduct an exempt employee’s salary for a full day’s absence taken for personal reasons without jeopardizing the employee’s exempt status. Employers cannot, however, deduct an exempt employee’s salary for less than a full-day absence without jeopardizing the employee’s exempt status.

Does a company have to allow employees to work from home (exempt or nonexempt) if the office is closed due to bad weather?

No, the employer does not need to allow employee to work from home, regardless of their FLSA status (exempt or nonexempt). The employer can make those decisions based upon the work that can be done remotely and based on the needs of the business. The employer should have clearly communicated policies and expectations regarding working from home during office closures.

Be Prepared

The bottom line is that every employer should think about the needs of the business, its financial resources, and employees’ needs and have plans in place to manage business issues due to inclement weather. Thinking through what the wage and hour laws require and developing your policies and then applying them consistently and fairly with all employees can reap huge dividends in employee loyalty and retention.
October 04, 2016

Nonprofits Receive Over $6.5 Million in Cash Back From UST

UST Rewards 431 Members for Successfully Lowering Their Anticipated Unemployment Claims within the Last Year.

Santa Barbara, CA (October 4, 2016) – In an era when nonprofits are struggling to stretch their budgets, the Unemployment Services Trust (UST) today announced it is pleased to disperse $6,664,166  to 431 of its program participants. The agencies receiving the funds have demonstrated prudent management of their unemployment costs resulting in a return of funds back to the organizations. This brings participant savings over the past year to a whopping $34,980,275.96 in claims savings, audited state returns and cash back.

501(c)(3) organizations have the exclusive advantage of opting out of their state's unemployment tax system and instead paying dollar-for-dollar for only their former employees claims. Excess payments made into the state tax system are not refunded to employers. UST, however, provides cash back when an organization has had a positive claim history and has reduced its unemployment claims lower than initially anticipated, while also staying well-funded for future claims.

“It’s incredibly rewarding to be able to give money back to these organizations whose core mission objectives are geared towards serving their communities,” said Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST. “It allows them the funds to further expand their programs in areas where otherwise they might not have been able. In a way we’re helping to invest in the future of each nonprofit organization participating in the Trust and that’s a great feeling.”

The largest nonprofit unemployment trust in the nation, UST helps 501(c)(3) organizations nationwide save time and money through a host of workforce management solutions that include - unemployment claims management, cash flow protection,  HR Workplace assistance, outplacement services and more.  The company services nonprofits from all sectors with 10 or more full-time employees. UST encourages nonprofits that are currently tax-rated or direct reimbursing on their own to review their options as they may be over-paying.
October 27, 2016

UST Earns a 95% Satisfaction Rating from its Nonprofit Membership

Survey of 2,100 nonprofits reveals that 95 percent of UST members would recommend UST as the preferred unemployment claims management solution for 501(c)(3)s.

Santa Barbara, CA (October 27, 2016) – The Unemployment Services Trust (UST) today announced that 95 percent of its program participants would recommend UST to their fellow nonprofits for the program’s extensive cost-saving resources. Having recently added outplacement services to its list of member benefits as well as increasing education-based webinar opportunities, UST attributes this high net promoter score to its evolving customer service model.

Under federal law, 501(c)(3) employers have the exclusive ability to opt out of their state’s unemployment tax system and instead pay only for the unemployment benefits claimed by former employees. UST helps nonprofits exercise this unique tax exemption status in a safe and cost-effective manner by delivering the latest workforce solutions that ensure HR compliance, reduce cumbersome paperwork tasks and mitigate unemployment claims overpayments.

“We are constantly fine-tuning the UST program to address the sector’s current pain points and shifting needs in managing HR and unemployment liability,” said Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST. “We couldn’t be more pleased to know the vast majority of our membership is very satisfied with our service, and honored that they would recommend our program to their peers.”

UST offers an extensive list of member benefits, which includes a live HR hotline, online employee handbook builder, 100% representation at unemployment claims hearings and e-Filing capabilities—helping to streamline day-to-day tasks and keep more money in the nonprofit community.

Most nonprofits have a November 30th state deadline to opt out of the unemployment tax system for 2017. UST encourages 501(c)(3) organizations, who have yet to benchmark their unemployment costs, to submit a free Unemployment Cost Analysis form by November 15 to find out how they may benefit from the UST program.

November 09, 2016

Nonprofits Win 84% of Protestable Unemployment Claims with UST

With the expert guidance of a dedicated unemployment claims advisor, UST participants avoid missing deadlines and making significant claims overpayments.

Santa Barbara, CA (November 8, 2016) – The Unemployment Services Trust (UST) today announced that 84% of protestable unemployment claims are won by program participants—an astounding 8% increase since 2012. Because every UST member is assigned a state-specific claims representative, who’s well-versed in the latest unemployment laws and claims filing protocols, these nonprofits are able to contest avoidable claims costs and funnel their savings back into mission-driven initiatives.

501(c)(3) organizations are allowed by federal law to opt out of the state tax system, and instead pay only for the unemployment benefits claimed by former employees. Although these nonprofits no longer share in the excess costs of state taxes that subsidize for-profit employers, they must properly manage their unemployment claims to meet deadlines and avoid costly penalties. UST’s devoted claims representative helps 501(c)(3) employers stay on top of every claim by organizing documentation, protesting improper claims, and providing on-demand support.

“Managing unemployment claims can be both a confusing and draining process, especially for nonprofits that often lack the employee bandwidth to efficiently track their claims,” said Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST. “By providing our members with claims experts, who walk them through everyday best practices for managing claims from start to finish, our participants are left with a worry-free process and more cash in their pockets.”

In addition to receiving expert claims advice, UST participants possess exclusive access to a robust list of claims management resources, including 100% claims representation at hearings, audits of state charges, consultations for strategic staff planning, e-Filing capabilities, and online interactive training—all of which are designed to lower unemployment costs and alleviate paperwork burdens.

In just 4 years, the number of claims protested by UST members has increased by 5%, leading to more wins and more money for the nonprofit sector. Compared to the national average cost of an unemployment claim, UST members experience an average of 55.8% in savings per claim.

If you’re a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with 10 or more full time employees, submit a free Unemployment Cost Analysis form by November 15 to find out if UST can help reduce your unemployment liability for 2017.

September 15, 2017

[Webinar] Unemployment & HR Risk Management with UST

For a limited time, UST offers their highest attended webinar – a 30 minute presentation just for nonprofit executives, CFOs and HR leaders.

Santa Barbara, CA (September 13, 2017) – The Unemployment Service Trust (UST), a program dedicated to providing nonprofits with dedicated HR support and educational tools, presents a short 30-minute webinar, revealing some of the most common unemployment & HR risks that can cost nonprofits thousands of dollars. With $30 million in potential unemployment liability mitigated last year for over 2,100 nonprofits, it’s likely that a good majority of nonprofit organizations are unknowingly overpaying.

After identifying the risks, the webinar, “Unemployment & HR Risk Management with UST,” reveals UST’s top recommendations to combat these issues. This presentation teaches attendees about:

  • Reducing unemployment tax liability as a 501(c)(3)
  • Benchmarking unemployment costs
  • Protecting funding from claims and liability
  • Efficiently managing unemployment claims, protests, and hearings
  • Avoiding costly HR mistakes
  • Enhancing goodwill by utilizing outplacement services

The webinar will also explore UST’s holistic program, which is already helping more than 2,200 participating nonprofits lower their unemployment and HR liability. 501(c)(3) nonprofits with 10 or more full time employees are able to register for their preferred webinar date today: http://www2.chooseust.org/2017/pr-webinar

December 14, 2017

UST Makes GoToWebinar’s Prestigious Top 100 Webinar List for 2017

The Unemployment Services Trust (UST) has been acknowledged by GoToWebinar as being a great source of business content for the nonprofit community.

Santa Barbara, CA (December 14, 2017) – The Unemployment Services Trust (UST), a program focused on helping nonprofits save money and strengthen their missions, announces that their webinar, “New Accounting Standards Nonprofits Need to Know,” hosted by Lindquist LLP, has made it on GoToWebinar’s list of Top 100 Webinars of 2017.

UST is a one-stop-shop to find HR best practices, workforce solutions and unemployment risk management tips exclusively for nonprofits. UST has created a variety of webinars catering to both nonprofit executives and HR employees. These webinars cover topics ranging from Retirement Planning and Common Financial Reporting Errors to Emergency Succession Planning and Best Practices in Outplacement and Career Transition Services. 

“We are thrilled to be recognized for our efforts and to partner with Lindquist LLP to create content that educates the nonprofit sector,” says Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST. “We look forward to continue providing a robust resource library for the nonprofit community.”

To view the most popular on-demand webinars, UST has launched a dedicated webinar channel on GoToWebinar’s new platform—GoToStage. This all-access video platform is designed to deliver relevant and easily accessible content that the nonprofit community craves. Visit UST’s GoToStage Channel today to keep up-to-date on the important legal changes and trends that may impact a nonprofit organization.

To receive the latest updates on free webinars and how-to guides exclusively for nonprofit organizations, make sure to sign-up for UST’s Monthly e-Newsletter.  

October 24, 2017

UST Launches A Fully Insured Program to Accommodate More Nonprofit Needs

Already Offering Multiple Nonprofit-Exclusive Programs, Designed to Streamline Operations and Reduce Overhead Costs, UST Launches Unemployment Insurance Program to Further Safeguard Nonprofits.

Insurance fileSanta Barbara, CA (October 19, 2017) The Unemployment Services Trust (UST), a program dedicated to helping nonprofits ensure compliance and protect assets, today announced it is rolling out a fully insured program, called UST Secure, which will provide full coverage for all claims within the year as well as access to claims management tools, certified HR guidance and award-winning outplacement services.

Already working with more than 2,200 nonprofit participants from across the nation, UST aims to provide nonprofit organizations with workforce solutions that reduce costs and strengthen their missions. Having received frequent requests for an insurance option over the last few years, UST is partnering with Ohio Indemnity Company to deliver an insurance solution specifically for 501(c)(3) employers.

“We are honored and excited to work with UST,” said Ron Lucki, Vice President of Business Development at Ohio Indemnity Company. “As one of the nation’s leading specialty insurance carriers for nonprofits and financial institutions, we look forward to growing with UST and offering insurance options that will enable UST to serve their clients with insurance protection and peace of mind.”

"UST Secure is another way we can provide financial relief and an invaluable sense of security to the nonprofit community." Donna Groh, Executive Director, UST

Ohio Indemnity Company is a fully licensed and admitted insurance company that has provided specialty insurance products to all 50 states plus District of Columbia for nearly 60 years. OIC’s financial stability has earned them an “Excellent” rating by A.M. Best, a global full-service credit rating agency and is also listed by the U.S. Treasury as an approved surety bond provider.

“No nonprofit is alike, so we have continuously looked for new resources and program offers to expand our reach within the sector,” says Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST. “UST Secure is another way we can provide financial relief and an invaluable sense of security to the nonprofit community.”

501(c)(3) nonprofit employers who are interested in learning more about UST Secure can reach out to a dedicated Unemployment Cost Advisor at 1-888-249-4788.

May 03, 2017

UST Nonprofit Members Utilized Over $1.1 Million in ThinkHR Resources Last Year

The Unemployment Services Trust (UST), the nation’s largest and lowest cost unemployment Trust provider, today announced that last year alone it helped 2,200+ nonprofits save more than $1.1 million dollars in human resources services through its value-added HR Workplace add-on.

The UST HR Workplace powered by ThinkHR empowers nonprofit HR professionals with the guidance they need to be more effective and efficient in their jobs. By providing expert HR advice, thousands of HR templates, hundreds of training courses and an award-winning online library for all workplace concerns, the UST HR Workplace gives nonprofits the knowledge they need to avoid costly risks and liability issues.

“Maintaining risks in the workplace is crucial to any organization but specifically for the nonprofit sector where one unexpected risk can put the organization in a situation they’re unprepared for,” said Donna Groh, Executive Director of UST, “ThinkHR helps nonprofit HR professionals avoid costly litigation with the tools available to them through use of ThinkHR Live, Comply and Learn.”

Staying on top of the latest HR laws and educating employees on organizational policies can help mitigate volatile unemployment claims and reduce costs long-term. Last year alone, UST members took nearly 5,000 online training courses and submitted close to 1,500 HR questions. The most popular resources utilized included Workplace Safety and Harassment Prevention training, Compliance and compensation inquiries, the Employee Handbook Builder and downloadable HR forms.

The UST HR Workplace has been a go-to resource for UST’s participating nonprofit employers since its launch in 2014 and is a priceless support system that helps to save time and money – offered at no additional cost to UST members.

Nonprofits can get a free 30-day trial of the UST HR Workplace powered by ThinkHR by visiting http://www.chooseust.org/thinkhr/.

About UST http://www.chooseust.org/thinkhr/ Founded in 1983, the Unemployment Services Trust UST provides 501c3s with a cost-effective alternative to paying state unemployment taxes. UST participants save millions annually through claims management, hearing representation, claim audits, outplacement services and HR support. Join more than 2,200 nonprofits nationwide and request an Unemployment Cost Analysis at www.ChooseUST.org.
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