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Certified Payroll Reports

Are there penalties for false certified payroll reports?

Falsification of certified payroll records or the required kickback of wages may subject a contractor or subcontractor to civil or criminal prosecution, the penalty for which may be fines and/or imprisonment.

Do I have to include Fringe benefit payments on my certified payroll reports?

Yes, if you are paying your fringe benefits in cash, then you must show the actual base rate of pay, PLUS the Fringe Benefit rate per hour, that is paid directly to the employee. 

For federal Davis-Bacon projects, however, if you pay all required fringe benefits defined by the wage decision to an approved plan (such as an ERISA Trust), then you only need to show the base rate of pay for Straight Time and Overtime.

For California prevailing wage work you are required to report gross contributions to fringe benefit plans on the certified payroll report. This is to be done for each plan for which the employee is enrolled.  This amount is reflected in Box 8 of the A-1-131 form.

Is the certified payroll form WH-347 sufficient for an audit by DOL?

While form WH-347 is legally sufficient for an audit by the DOL, many contractors find it beneficial to use California’s form A1-131 for their certified payroll reports even when working on federal projects because California’s form includes the weekly payments for fringe benefits – information which will be necessary in the event of a DOL Wage and Hour Division audit. 

What information is required for the Certified Payroll Report?

The requirements differ depending upon whether the work being performed is for Federal and/or State prevailing wage. For Federal projects, effective December 31, 2008 thru December 31, 2011, the U.S. Department of labor form WH-347 mandates the information required for completing the certified payroll report.

For California prevailing wage, the DIR requires form A-1-131. (We will be adding reporting information for the other little Davis-Bacon’s in the coming months!)

Do I have to do a certified payroll report even when there’s a break in my project?

Yes, contractors are required to submit weekly, certified payroll reports even when there is a temporary break in work on the project.  Either the certified payroll shall be annotated as “No Work” for that week or a Non-Performance Statement must be submitted.

How often are certified payroll reports produced?

Contractors are required to prepare their certified payroll report on a weekly-basis, beginning the first week that their company begins work on the prevailing wage project and continuing until project completion. Specific submission requirements for your certified payroll report differ depending upon the State and/or Federal regulations governing the job.

What is a certified payroll report?

In order to insure that contractors working on federal or State funded projects are paying their employees accurately for work performed, all contractors who perform work on prevailing wage projects must furnish copies of certified payroll reports to the contracting agency. These certified payroll reports insure that the payroll records of the prime contractor, as well as those of its subcontractors, accurately reflect the hours worked, rate of pay (for both base rate and fringe benefits) and classification of work performed.

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