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Businesses that hire eligible unemployed veterans can take advantage of a Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). (This credit is also available to certain tax-exempt organizations.) After recent changes, The Returning Heroes Tax Credit now provides incentives of up to $5,600 for hiring unemployed veterans, and the Wounded Warriors Tax Credit doubles the existing Work Opportunity Tax Credit for long-term unemployed veterans with service-connected disabilities, to up to $9,600. Below are the amended and expanded definitions of the veteran group as recognized by the WOTC.
Qualified Long-term Unemployment
This is a credit for new hires that begin work on or after January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2019, during which the individual is employed no less than 27 consecutive weeks, and includes a period in which the individual was receiving unemployment compensation under State or Federal law. For WOTC-certified new hires working at least 120 hours, employers can claim 25% of the first year wages paid up to $6,000, for a maximum income tax credit of up to $1,500. For WOTC-certified new hires working 400 hours or more, employers can claim 40% of the first year wages up to $6,000, for a maximum income tax credit of up to $2,400.
A credit of 40% of the first $6,000 of wages (up to $2,400) for employers who hire veterans who have been in receipt of unemployment compensation for at least 4 weeks.
A credit of 40% of the first $14,000 of wages (up to $5,600) for employers who hire veterans who have been in receipt of unemployment compensation for longer than 6 months.
Veterans with Services-Connected Disabilities
Maintains the existing Work Opportunity Tax Credit for veterans with service-connected disabilities hired within one year of being discharged from the military. The credit is 40% of the first $12,000 of wages (up to $4,800).
Long-Term Unemployed Veterans with Services-Connected Disabilities
A new credit of 40% of the first $24,000 of wages (up to $9,600) for firms that hire veterans with service-connected disabilities who have been in receipt of unemployment compensation for longer than 6 months. The credit can be as high as $9,600 per veteran for for-profit employers or up to $6,240 for tax-exempt organizations.
Click here for more information regarding the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC).
A recent Chamber survey of area businesses indicated that 34 percent of these employers were not willing to accept applications from formerly incarcerated individuals. Because these individuals know their options are limited, they are typically willing to work hard to prove themselves. Many of them have even participated in training programs in prison that could give them special qualifications for a job at your company. Additionally, there are a number of re-entry programs in Forsyth County that can add to their training. We encourage you to read the sections below to get a better idea of what giving someone a second chance will bring to your organization.
Federal Bonding Program
The Federal Bonding Program provides insurance to employers willing to hire eligible individuals with criminal convictions. The bonds protect employers against money or property loss due to employee dishonesty including theft, forgery, larceny and embezzlement. Click here for more information.
Work Opportunity Tax Credit
The Work Opportunity Tax Credit is available to private employers who employ individuals with felony convictions hired within a year or conviction or incarceration. Employers can receive up to $2400 for each eligible individual. Click here for more information.
Assessing a Criminal Record
It is impossible to produce a list of those convictions that should be taken into account, and those that should not. Assessing a conviction to make a reasoned judgement about risk is a fairly simple process. It involves checking a person’s criminal history against the following criteria: