December 12, 2019
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The Florida Statutes

The 2001 Florida Statutes

Title XXXI
Labor
Chapter 443
Unemployment Compensation
View Entire Chapter
Section 443.131, Florida Statutes 2001

443.131  Contributions.--

(1)  WHEN PAYABLE.--Contributions shall accrue and become payable by each employer for each calendar quarter in which he or she is subject to this chapter, with respect to wages paid during such calendar quarter for employment. Such contributions shall become due and be paid by each employer to the division for the fund, in accordance with such rules as the division may prescribe. However, nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prohibit the division from allowing, on a limited basis, at the request of the employer, certain employers of employees performing domestic services, as defined in s. 443.036(21)(g) and by rule of the division, to pay contributions or report wages at intervals other than quarterly when such payment or reporting is to the advantage of the division and the employers, and when such nonquarterly payment and reporting is authorized under federal law. This provision gives employers of employees performing domestic services the option to elect to report wages and pay taxes annually, with a due date of April 1 and a delinquency date of April 30. In order to qualify for this election, the employer must have only domestic employees, be in good standing, apply to this program no later than December 30 of the preceding calendar year, and agree to provide the division with any special reports which might be requested, as required by rule 38B-2.025(5), including copies of all federal employment tax forms. Failure to furnish any information when required may result in the employer's loss of the privilege to elect participation in this program. Contributions shall not be deducted, in whole or in part, from the wages of individuals in such employer's employ. In the payment of any contributions, a fractional part of a cent shall be disregarded unless it amounts to one-half cent or more, in which case it shall be increased to 1 cent.

(2)  RATES.--Each employer is required to pay contributions equal to the following percentages of wages paid by him or her with respect to employment:

(a)  Each employer whose employment record has been chargeable with benefit payments for less than eight calendar quarters shall pay contributions at the initial rate of 2.7 percent with respect to wages paid on or after January 1, 1978.

(b)  Each employer whose employment record has been chargeable with benefit payments for at least eight calendar quarters shall pay contributions at the rate of 5.4 percent, except as otherwise determined by experience rating provisions of this chapter. For the purposes of this section, the total wages on which contributions have been paid by a single employer or his or her predecessor to an individual in any state within a single calendar year shall be counted to determine whether more remuneration than constitutes wages has been paid to such individual by such employer or his or her predecessor in 1 calendar year.

(c)1.  Should the Congress either amend or repeal the Wagner-Peyser Act, the Federal Unemployment Tax Act, the Social Security Act, or subtitle C of the Internal Revenue Code, any act or acts supplemental to or in lieu thereof, or any part or parts of either or all of said laws, or should either or all of said laws, or any part or parts thereof, be held invalid, to the end and with such effect that appropriations of funds by the Congress and grants thereof to this state for the payment of costs of administration of the division become no longer available for such purposes, or should employers in this state subject to the payment of tax under the Federal Unemployment Tax Act be granted full credit upon such a tax for contributions or taxes paid to the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund, then in such case, beginning with the effective date of such change in liability for payment of such federal tax, and for each year thereafter, the standard contribution rate under this chapter shall be 3 percent per annum of each such employer's payroll subject to contributions. With respect to each such employer having a reduced rate of contribution for such year pursuant to the terms of subsection (3), to the rate of contribution, as determined for such year in which such change occurs, shall be added three-tenths of 1 percent.

2.  The amount of the excess of tax for which such employer is or may become liable, by reason of this subsection, over the amount which such employer would pay or become liable for except for the provisions of this subsection, shall be paid and transferred into the Employment Security Administration Trust Fund to be disbursed and paid out under the same conditions and for the same purposes as are other moneys provided to be paid into such fund; provided, that if the division determines that as of January 1 of any year, there is an excess in the fund over the moneys and funds required to be disbursed therefrom for the purposes thereof for such year, then, and in such cases an amount equal to such excess, as determined by the division, shall be transferred to and become a part of the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund, and such funds shall be deemed to be and are hereby appropriated for the purposes set out in this chapter.

(d)  In the event that the Federal Unemployment Tax Act is amended to permit credit against such tax in excess of 2.7 percent with respect to any calendar year, payment of the amount of contributions necessary to qualify an employer for such additional credit shall be deemed to be required under this chapter.

(3)  CONTRIBUTION RATES BASED ON BENEFIT EXPERIENCE.--

(a)  The regular and short-time compensation benefit payments made to any eligible individual shall be charged to the employment record of each employer who paid such individual wages equal to $100 or more within the base period of such individual in the proportion to which wages paid by each such employer to such individual within the base period bears to total wages paid by all such employers to such individual within the base period. No benefit charges shall be made to the employment record of any employer who has furnished part-time work to an individual who, because of loss of employment with one or more other employers, becomes eligible for partial benefits while still being furnished part-time work by such employer on substantially the same basis and in substantially the same amount as has been made available to such worker during his or her base period, whether the employments were simultaneous or successive. Further, benefit payments will not be charged to the accounts of employers when such employers have furnished the division with such notices regarding separations of individuals from work and the refusal of individuals to accept offers of suitable work as are required by the provisions of this chapter and the rules of the division, if one or more of the following conditions are found to be applicable:

1.  When an individual has left his or her job without good cause attributable to his or her employer or has been discharged by his or her employer for misconduct connected with his or her work, no benefits subsequently paid to him or her on the basis of wages paid to such individual by such employer prior to such separation shall be charged to such employer's account.

2.  When an individual has been discharged by an employer for unsatisfactory performance during an initial employment probationary period, no benefits subsequently paid to the individual on the basis of wages paid to such individual in the probationary period by the employer prior to employment separation shall be charged to the employer's account, provided the employer has so notified the division in writing within 10 days from the mailing date of the notice of initial determination of a claim. As used in this paragraph, the term "probationary period" means an established probationary plan which applies to all employees or a specific group of employees and does not exceed 90 calendar days from the first day a new employee begins work. The employee must be informed of the probationary period within the first 7 workdays. There must be conclusive evidence to establish that the individual was separated due to unsatisfactory work performance and not separated because of lack of work due to temporary, seasonal, casual, or other similar employment not of a regular, permanent, and year-round nature.

3.  Benefits which are paid to any individual subsequent to the refusal without good cause by such individual of an offer of suitable employment from an employer will not be charged to the account of such employer when all or any part of such benefits are upon the basis of wages paid to such individual by such employer prior to the refusal by such individual to accept such offer of suitable work. For purposes of this subparagraph, good cause does not include distance to employment due to a change of residence by such individual. (The division shall determine with respect to the payment of all benefits whether this proviso shall be applied without regard to whether a disqualification pursuant to the provisions of s. 443.101 has or may be invoked against a claimant or claimants for benefits.)

4.  When an individual is separated from an employer as a direct result of a natural disaster declared pursuant to the Disaster Relief Act of 1974 and the Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Amendments of 1988, no benefits subsequently paid to the individual on the basis of wages paid to such individual shall be charged to such employer's account.

In the event subparagraph 2. has the effect of placing this state out of compliance with the Federal Unemployment Compensation Law, as determined by the appropriate court of law, by affecting the amount of federal funds due to the state or adversely affecting the unemployment compensation tax rate, then subparagraph 2. shall be null and void and shall stand repealed upon the date on which any of such conditions occur.

(b)1.  The division shall, for each calendar year, compute a benefit ratio for each employer whose employment record has been chargeable with benefit payments for the 12 consecutive quarters ending June 30 preceding the calendar year for which the benefit ratio is computed. An employer's benefit ratio shall be the quotient obtained by dividing the total benefit payments chargeable to his or her employment record during the 3-year period ending June 30 of the preceding calendar year by the total of his or her annual payrolls (as defined in paragraph (f)) for the 3-year period ending June 30 of the preceding calendar year. Such benefit ratio shall be computed to the fifth decimal place and rounded to the fourth decimal place.

2.  The division shall compute a benefit ratio for each employer not previously eligible therefor whose initial tax rate is 2.7 percent and whose unemployment has been chargeable with benefit payments for at least 8 calendar quarters immediately preceding the calendar quarter for which the benefit ratio is computed. Such employer's benefit ratio shall be the quotient obtained by dividing the total benefit payments charged to his or her employment record during the first 6 of 8 completed calendar quarters immediately preceding the calendar quarter for which the benefit ratio is computed by the total of the employer's annual payrolls (as defined in paragraph (f)) for the first 7 of the 9 completed calendar quarters immediately preceding the calendar quarter for which the benefit ratio is computed. Such benefit ratio shall be computed to the fifth decimal place and rounded to the fourth decimal place and shall be applicable for the remainder of the calendar year. The employer will next be rated on an annual basis using up to 12 calendar quarters of benefits charged and up to 12 calendar quarters of annual payrolls. Such employer's benefit ratio shall be the quotient obtained by dividing the total benefit payments charged to his or her employment record by the total of the employer's annual payrolls, as defined in paragraph (f), for the quarters used in his or her first computation plus the subsequent quarters reported through June 30 of the prior year. Each year thereafter the rate will be computed as provided in subparagraph 1. Variation from the standard rate of contribution shall be assigned on a quarterly basis to such employers eligible therefor in like manner as assignments made for a calendar year under paragraph (e).

(c)  The standard rate of contributions payable by each employer shall be 5.4 percent.

(d)  Employers shall be eligible for rate variations from the standard rate of contributions, as hereinafter described, in any calendar year, only if their employment records have been chargeable with benefit payments throughout the 12 consecutive quarters ending on June 30 of the preceding calendar year. An employer who, as a result of having at least 8 consecutive quarters of payroll insufficient to be chargeable with benefit payments, has not been chargeable with benefit payments throughout the stated 12-quarter period shall revert to initial rate status until they again become eligible for an earned rate.

(e)1.  Variations from the standard rate of contributions shall be assigned with respect to each calendar year to employers eligible therefor. In determining the contribution rate, varying from the standard rate to be assigned each employer, adjustment factors provided for in sub-subparagraphs a.-c. will be added to the benefit ratio. This addition will be accomplished in two steps by adding a variable adjustment factor and a final adjustment factor as defined below. The sum of these adjustment factors provided for in sub-subparagraphs a.-c. will first be algebraically summed. The sum of these adjustment factors will then be divided by a gross benefit ratio to be determined as follows: Total benefit payments for the previous 3 years, as defined in subparagraph (b)1., charged to employers eligible to be assigned a contribution rate different from the standard rate minus excess payments for the same period divided by taxable payroll entering into the computation of individual benefit ratios for the calendar year for which the contribution rate is being computed. The ratio of the sum of the adjustment factors provided for in sub-subparagraphs a.-c. to the gross benefit ratio will be multiplied by each individual benefit ratio below the maximum tax rate to obtain variable adjustment factors; except that in any instance in which the sum of an employer's individual benefit ratio and variable adjustment factor exceeds the maximum tax rate, the variable adjustment factor will be reduced so that the sum equals the maximum tax rate. The variable adjustment factor of each such employer will be multiplied by his or her taxable payroll entering into the computation of his or her benefit ratio. The sum of these products will be divided by the taxable payroll of such employers that entered into the computation of their benefit ratios. The resulting ratio will be subtracted from the sum of the adjustment factors provided for in sub-subparagraphs a.-c. to obtain the final adjustment factor. The variable adjustment factors and the final adjustment factor will be computed to five decimal places and rounded to the fourth decimal place. This final adjustment factor will be added to the variable adjustment factor and benefit ratio of each employer to obtain each employer's contribution rate; however, at no time shall an employer's contribution rate be rounded to less than 0.1 percent.

a.  An adjustment factor for noncharge benefits will be computed to the fifth decimal place, and rounded to the fourth decimal place, by dividing the amount of benefit payments noncharged in the 3 preceding years as defined in subparagraph (b)1. by the taxable payroll of employers eligible to be considered for assignment of a contribution rate different from the standard rate that have a benefit ratio for the current year less than the maximum contribution rate. The taxable payroll of such employers will be the taxable payrolls for the 3 years ending June 30 of the current calendar year that had been reported to the division by September 30 of the same calendar year. Noncharge benefits for the purpose of this section shall be defined as benefit payments to an individual which were paid from the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund but which were not charged to the unemployment record of any employer.

b.  An excess payments adjustment factor will be computed to the fifth decimal place, and rounded to the fourth decimal place, by dividing the total excess payments during the 3 preceding years as defined in subparagraph (b)1. by the taxable payroll of employers eligible to be considered for assignment of a contribution rate different from the standard rate that have a benefit ratio for the current year less than the maximum contribution rate. The taxable payroll of such employers will be the same as used in computing the noncharge adjustment factor as described in sub-subparagraph a. The term "excess payments" for the purpose of this section is defined as the amount of benefit payments charged to the employment record of an employer during the 3 preceding years, as defined in subparagraph (b)1., less the product of the maximum contribution rate and his or her taxable payroll for the 3 years ending June 30 of the current calendar year that had been reported to the division by September 30 of the same calendar year. The term "total excess payments" is defined as the sum of the individual employer excess payments for those employers that were eligible to be considered for assignment of a contribution rate different from the standard rate.

c.  If the balance in the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund as of June 30 of the calendar year immediately preceding the calendar year for which the contribution rate is being computed is less than 4 percent of the taxable payrolls for the year ending June 30 as reported to the division by September 30 of that calendar year, a positive adjustment factor will be computed. Such adjustment factor shall be computed annually to the fifth decimal place, and rounded to the fourth decimal place, by dividing the sum of the total taxable payrolls for the year ending June 30 of the current calendar year as reported to the division by September 30 of such calendar year into a sum equal to one-fourth of the difference between the amount in the fund as of June 30 of such calendar year and the sum of 5 percent of the total taxable payrolls for that year. Such adjustment factor will remain in effect in subsequent years until a balance in the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund as of June 30 of the year immediately preceding the effective date of such contribution rate equals or exceeds 4 percent of the taxable payrolls for the year ending June 30 of the current calendar year as reported to the division by September 30 of that calendar year. If the balance in the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund as of June 30 of the year immediately preceding the calendar year for which the contribution rate is being computed exceeds 5 percent of the taxable payrolls for the year ending June 30 of the current calendar year as reported to the division by September 30 of that calendar year, a negative adjustment factor will be computed. Such adjustment factor shall be computed annually to the fifth decimal place, and rounded to the fourth decimal place, by dividing the sum of the total taxable payrolls for the year ending June 30 of the current calendar year as reported to the division by September 30 of such calendar year into a sum equal to one-fourth of the difference between the amount in the fund as of June 30 of the current calendar year and 5 percent of the total taxable payrolls of such year. Such adjustment factor will remain in effect in subsequent years until the balance in the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund as of June 30 of the year immediately preceding the effective date of such contribution rate is less than 5 percent but more than 4 percent of the taxable payrolls for the year ending June 30 of the current calendar year as reported to the division by September 30 of that calendar year.

d.  The maximum contribution rate that can be assigned to any employer shall be 5.4 percent, except those employers participating in an approved short-time compensation plan in which case the maximum shall be 1 percent above the current maximum contribution rate, with respect to any calendar year in which short-time compensation benefits are in the employer's employment record.

2.  In the event of the transfer of employment records to an employing unit pursuant to paragraph (g) which, prior to such transfer, was an employer, the division shall recompute a benefit ratio for the successor employer on the basis of the combined employment records and reassign an appropriate contribution rate to such successor employer as of the beginning of the calendar quarter immediately following the effective date of such transfer of employment records.

(f)  As used in paragraph (b), the term "annual payroll" means the calendar quarter taxable payroll reported to the division for the quarters used in the benefit ratio computation, so that no tax rate penalty in the benefit ratio computation will result from the untimely filing of required wage and tax reports. All of the taxable payroll reported to the division by the end of the quarter preceding the quarter in which the tax rate is to be computed shall be used in the computation.

(g)1.  For the purposes of this subsection, two or more employers who are parties to a transfer of business or the subject of a merger, consolidation, or other form of reorganization, effecting a change in legal identity or form, shall be deemed to be a single employer and shall be considered as one employer with a continuous employment record if the division finds that the successor employer continues to carry on the employing enterprises of the predecessor employer or employers and that the successor employer has paid all contributions required of and due from the predecessor employer or employers and has assumed liability for all contributions that may become due from the predecessor employer or employers. As used in this paragraph, the term "contributions" means all indebtedness to the division, including, but not limited to, interest, penalty, collection fee, and service fee. A successor has 30 days from the date of the official notification of liability by succession to accept the transfer of the predecessor's or predecessors' employment record or records. If the predecessor or predecessors have unpaid contributions or outstanding quarterly reports, the successor has 30 days from the date of the notice listing the total amount due to pay the total amount with certified funds. After the total indebtedness has been paid, the employment record or records of the predecessor or predecessors will be transferred to the successor. Employment records may be transferred by the division. The tax rate of total successor and predecessor upon the transfer of employment records shall be determined by the division as prescribed by rule in order to calculate any tax rate change resulting from the transfer of employment records.

2.  Whether or not there is a transfer of employment record as contemplated in this paragraph, the predecessor shall in the event he or she again employs persons be treated as an employer without previous employment record or, if his or her coverage has been terminated as provided in s. 443.121, as a new employing unit.

3.  The division may provide by rule for partial transfer of experience rating when an employer has transferred at any time an identifiable and segregable portion of his or her payrolls and business to a successor employing unit. As a condition of such partial transfer of experience, the rules shall require an application by the successor, agreement by the predecessor, and such evidence as the division may prescribe of the experience and payrolls attributable to the transferred portion up to the date of transfer. The rules shall provide that the successor employing unit, if not already an employer, shall become an employer as of the date of the transfer and that the experience of the transferred portion of the predecessor's account shall be removed from the experience-rating record of the predecessor, and for each calendar year following the date of the transfer of the employment record on the books of the division, the division shall compute the rate of contribution payable by the successor on the basis of his or her experience, if any, combined with the experience of the portion of the record transferred. The rules may also provide what rates shall be payable by the predecessor and successor employers for the period between the date of the transfer of the employment record of the transferred unit on the books of the division and the first day of the next calendar year.

4.  This paragraph shall not apply to the employee leasing company and client contractual agreement as defined in s. 443.036. The client shall, in the event of termination of the contractual agreement or failure by the employee leasing company to submit reports or pay contributions as required by the division, be treated as a new employer without previous employment record unless otherwise eligible for a rate computation.

(h)  No reduction below the standard contribution rate shall be allowed an employer under the provisions of this section unless:

1.  All contributions, interest, and penalties incurred by such employer with respect to wages paid by him or her in all previous calendar quarters, except the 4 calendar quarters immediately preceding the calendar quarter or calendar year for which the benefit ratio is computed, have been paid; and

2.  The employer entitled thereto shall have at least one annual payroll as defined in paragraph (f) and unless such employer is eligible for additional credit under the provisions of the Federal Unemployment Tax Act; and in the event the Federal Unemployment Tax Act shall be revised, amended, or repealed, this section shall be applicable only to the extent that additional credit may be allowed against the payment of the tax imposed by the Federal Unemployment Tax Act.

An earned tax rate will be assigned to an employer under subparagraph 1. the quarter following the quarter in which the aforesaid indebtedness is paid in full.

(i)  The division:

1.  Shall promptly notify each employer of his or her rate of contributions as determined for any calendar year pursuant to this section. Such determination shall become conclusive and binding upon the employer unless within 20 days after the mailing of notice thereof to his or her last known address, or, in the absence of mailing, within 20 days after the delivery of such notice, the employer files an application for review and redetermination setting forth his or her reasons therefor. No employer shall be allowed, in any proceeding involving his or her rate of contributions or contribution liability, to contest the chargeability to his or her account of any benefits paid in accordance with a determination, redetermination, or decision pursuant to s. 443.151, except upon the ground that the services on the basis of which such benefits were found to be chargeable did not constitute services performed in employment for him or her and then only in the event that the employer was not a party to such determination, redetermination, or decision or to any other proceedings provided for in this chapter in which the character of such services was determined.

2.  Shall, upon the discovery of an error in computation, reconsider any prior determination or redetermination of contribution rate after the 20-day period has expired and issue a revised notice of contribution rate as so redetermined. Such redetermination shall be subject to review, and become conclusive and binding in absence thereof, in the same manner as the determination provided in subparagraph 1. No such reconsideration shall be made after the March 31 immediately following the calendar year with respect to which the contribution rate is applicable, nor shall interest accrue on any additional contributions found to be due until 30 days after the employer is mailed notice of his or her revised contribution rate.

3.  May provide by rule for periodic notification to employers of benefits paid and chargeable to their accounts or of the status of such accounts, and any such notification, in the absence of an application for redetermination filed in such manner and within such period as the division may prescribe, shall become conclusive and binding upon the employer for all purposes of this chapter. Such redetermination, and the division's finding of fact in connection therewith, may be introduced in any subsequent administrative or judicial proceeding involving the determination of the rate of contributions of any employer for any calendar year and shall be entitled to the same finality as is provided in this subsection with respect to the findings of fact made by the division in proceedings to redetermine the contribution rate of an employer. Pending such redetermination or administrative or judicial proceeding, the employer shall file reports and pay contributions in accordance with this section.

(j)1.  If the division finds that an employer's business is closed solely because of the entrance of one or more of the owners, officers, partners, or the majority stockholder into the Armed Forces of the United States, or any of its allies, or of the United Nations, such employer's experience-rating record shall not be terminated; and, if the business is resumed within 2 years after the discharge or release from active duty in the armed forces of such person or persons, the employer's experience shall be deemed to have been continuous throughout such period. The benefit ratio of any such employer for the calendar year in which he or she resumed business and the 3 calendar years immediately following shall be a percentage equal to the total of his or her benefit charges (including charges of benefits paid to any individual during the period the employer was in the armed forces based upon wages paid by him or her prior to the employer's entrance into such forces) for the 3 most recently completed calendar years divided by that part of his or her total payroll, with respect to which contributions have been paid to the division, for the 3 most recent calendar years during the whole of which, respectively, such employer has been in business.

2.  No cash refund shall be made with respect to any adjustment required hereunder, but such refund shall be made by credit memorandum only.

(k)  This subsection applies only to employers who are liable for contributions under the contributory system of financing unemployment compensation benefits. This subsection shall not in any way be construed to apply to employers who are liable for payments in lieu of contributions as provided in subsections (4) and (5).

(l)  The provisions of subsection (2) and of this subsection are not applicable to employers using the reimbursable method of financing benefit payments.

(4)  FINANCING BENEFITS PAID TO EMPLOYEES OF NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS.--Benefits paid to employees of nonprofit organizations shall be financed in accordance with the provisions of this subsection. For the purpose of this subsection, a "nonprofit" organization is an organization or group of organizations described in s. 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code which is exempt from income tax under s. 501(a) of such code.

(a)  Liability for contributions and election of reimbursement.--Any nonprofit organization which, pursuant to s. 443.036(19)(c) or s. 443.121(3)(a) is, or becomes, subject to this chapter shall pay contributions under the provisions of subsection (1), unless it elects, in accordance with this paragraph, to pay to the division for the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund an amount equal to the amount of regular benefits and of one-half of the extended benefits paid, that is attributable to service in the employ of such nonprofit organization, to individuals for weeks of unemployment which begin during the effective period of such election.

1.  Any nonprofit organization which becomes subject to this chapter may elect to become liable for payments in lieu of contributions for not less than the period beginning with the date on which such subjectivity begins and ending at the end of the next calendar year by filing a written notice of its election with the division not later than 30 days immediately following the date of the determination of such subjectivity.

2.  Any nonprofit organization which makes an election in accordance with subparagraph 1. will continue to be liable for payments in lieu of contributions until it files with the division a written notice terminating its election not later than 30 days prior to the beginning of the calendar year for which such termination shall first be effective.

3.  Any nonprofit organization which has been paying contributions under this chapter may change to a reimbursable basis by filing with the division not later than 30 days prior to the beginning of any calendar year a written notice of election to become liable for payments in lieu of contributions. Such election shall not be terminable by the organization for that and the next calendar year.

4.  The division, in accordance with such rules as the division may prescribe, shall notify each nonprofit organization of any determination of its status as an employer and of the effective date of any election which it makes and of any termination of such election. Such determinations shall be subject to reconsideration, appeal, and review in accordance with the provisions of s. 443.141(2)(b).

(b)  Reimbursement payments.--Payments in lieu of contributions shall be made in accordance with the provisions of this paragraph.

1.  At the end of each calendar quarter or at the end of any other period as determined by the division, the division shall bill each nonprofit organization, or group of such organizations, which has elected to make payments in lieu of contributions for an amount equal to the full amount of regular benefits plus one-half of the amount of extended benefits paid during such quarter or other prescribed period that is attributable to service in the employ of such organization.

2.  Payment of any bill rendered under subparagraph 1. shall be made not later than 30 days after such bill was mailed to the last known address of the nonprofit organization or was otherwise delivered to it, unless there has been an application for review and redetermination in accordance with subparagraph 4.

3.  Payments made by any nonprofit organization under the provisions of this subsection shall not be deducted or deductible, in whole or in part, from the remuneration of individuals in the employ of the organization.

4.  The amount due specified in any bill from the division shall be conclusive on the organization unless, not later than 20 days after the bill was mailed to its last known address or otherwise delivered to it, the organization files an application for redetermination by the division, setting forth the grounds for such application. The division shall promptly review and reconsider the amount due specified in the bill and shall thereafter issue a redetermination in any case in which such application for redetermination has been filed. Any such redetermination shall be conclusive on the organization unless, not later than 20 days after the redetermination was mailed to its last known address or otherwise delivered to it, the organization files its protest thereof, setting forth the grounds for the appeal. Proceedings on such protest shall be in accordance with the provisions of s. 443.141(2), relating to protests of assessments.

5.  Past due payments of amounts in lieu of contributions shall be subject to the same interest and penalties that, pursuant to s. 443.141(1), apply to past due contributions.

6.  Each employer who is liable for payments in lieu of contributions shall be charged his or her proportionate share of benefits, and the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund shall be reimbursed in full.

(c)  Authority to terminate elections.--If any nonprofit organization is delinquent in making payments in lieu of contributions as required under paragraph (b), the division may terminate such organization's election to make payments in lieu of contributions as of the beginning of the next calendar year, and such termination shall be effective for that and the next calendar year.

(d)  Allocations of benefit costs.--Each employer that is liable for payments in lieu of contributions shall pay to the division for the fund the amount of regular benefits, short-time compensation benefits, plus the amount of one-half of extended benefits paid that are attributable to service in the employ of such employer. If benefits paid to an individual are based on wages paid by more than one employer and one or more of such employers are liable for payments in lieu of contributions, the amount payable to the fund by each employer that is liable for such payments shall be determined in accordance with the provisions of subparagraph 1. or subparagraph 2.

1.  Proportionate allocation when fewer than all base-period employers are liable for reimbursement.--If benefits paid to an individual are based on wages paid by one or more employers that are liable for payments in lieu of contributions and on wages paid by one or more employers who are liable for contributions, the amount of benefits payable by each employer that is liable for payments in lieu of contributions shall be an amount which bears the same ratio to the total benefits paid to the individual as the total base-period wages paid to the individual by such employer bears to the total base-period wages paid to the individual by all of his or her base-period employers.

2.  Proportionate allocation when all base-period employers are liable for reimbursement.--If benefits paid to an individual are based on wages paid by two or more employers that are liable for payments in lieu of contributions, the amount of benefits payable by each such employer shall be an amount which bears the same ratio to the total benefits paid to the individual as the total base-period wages paid to the individual by such employer bears to the total base-period wages paid to the individual by all of his or her base-period employers.

(e)  Group accounts.--Two or more employers that have become liable for payments in lieu of contributions, in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (a) and s. 443.121(3), may file a joint application to the division for the establishment of a group account for the purpose of sharing the cost of benefits paid that are attributable to service in the employ of such employers. Each such application shall identify and authorize a group representative to act as the group's agent for the purposes of this paragraph. Upon its approval of the application, the division shall establish a group account for such employers effective as of the beginning of the calendar year in which it receives the application and shall notify the group's representative of the effective date of the account. Such account shall remain in effect for not less than 2 calendar years and thereafter until terminated at the discretion of the division or upon application by the group. Upon establishment of the account, each member of the group shall be liable for payments in lieu of contributions with respect to each calendar quarter in the amount that bears the same ratio to the total benefits paid in such quarter that are attributable to service performed in the employ of all members of the group as the total wages paid for service in employment by such member in such quarter bears to the total wages paid during such quarter for service performed in the employ of all members of the group. The division shall prescribe such rules as it deems necessary with respect to applications for establishment, maintenance, and termination of group accounts that are authorized by this paragraph; for addition of new members to, and withdrawal of active members from, such accounts; and for the determination of the amounts that are payable under this paragraph by members of the group and the time and manner of such payments.

(5)  FINANCING BENEFITS PAID TO EMPLOYEES OF THE STATE AND POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS OF THE STATE.--Benefits paid to employees of this state or any instrumentality of this state, or to employees of any political subdivision of this state or any instrumentality thereof, based upon service defined in s. 443.036(21)(b), shall be financed in accordance with this subsection.

(a)1.  Unless an election is made as provided in paragraph (c), the state or any political subdivision of the state shall pay into the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund an amount equivalent to the amount of regular benefits, short-time compensation benefits, and extended benefits paid to individuals, based on wages paid by the state or the political subdivision for service defined in s. 443.036(21)(b).

2.  Should any state agency become more than 120 days delinquent on reimbursements due to the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund, the division shall certify to the Comptroller the amount due and the Comptroller shall transfer the amount due to the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund from the funds of such agency that may legally be used for such purpose. In the event any political subdivision of the state or any instrumentality thereof becomes more than 120 days delinquent on reimbursements due to the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund, then, upon request by the division after a hearing, the Department of Revenue or the Department of Banking and Finance, as the case may be, shall deduct the amount owed by the political subdivision or instrumentality from any funds to be distributed by it to the county, city, special district, or consolidated form of government for further distribution to the trust fund in accordance with this chapter. Should any employer for whom the city or county tax collector collects taxes fail to make the reimbursements to the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund required by this chapter, the tax collector after a hearing, at the request of the division and upon receipt of a certificate showing the amount owed by the employer, shall deduct the amount so certified from any taxes collected for the employer and remit same to the Department of Labor and Employment Security for further distribution to the trust fund in accordance with this chapter. This subparagraph does not apply to those amounts due for benefits paid prior to October 1, 1979. This subparagraph does not apply to amounts owed by a political subdivision for benefits erroneously paid where the claimant is required to repay to the division under s. 443.151(6)(a) or (b) any sum as benefits received.

(b)  The provisions of paragraphs (4)(b), (d), and (e), relating to reimbursement payments, allocation of benefit costs, and group accounts with respect to nonprofit organizations, are applicable also, to the extent allowed by federal law, with respect to the duties of this state or any political subdivision of this state as an employer by reason of s. 443.036(19)(b).

(c)  Any employer subject to the provisions of this subsection may elect the contribution financing method as provided by law in lieu of the reimbursement financing method provided in paragraphs (a) and (b).

(d)  Upon establishing a financing method as provided by this subsection, such financing method shall be applicable for not less than 2 calendar years. Nothing herein shall be construed to prevent an employer subject to the provisions of this subsection from electing to change its method of financing or its method of reporting after completing 2 calendar years under another financing method, so long as such new election is timely filed. The division may prescribe by rule the procedures for changing methods of reporting.

(6)  PUBLIC EMPLOYERS UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BENEFIT ACCOUNT.--

(a)  There is established a Public Employers Unemployment Compensation Benefit Account which will be maintained with separate accounting as a part of the Florida Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund. All benefits paid to public employees shall be charged to the Public Employers Unemployment Compensation Benefit Account.

(b)  Governmental entities subject to the Florida Unemployment Compensation Law under s. 443.036(21)(b) who exercise the option to elect the contributory system of financing unemployment compensation benefits shall have their accounts maintained and shall be subject to the provisions of subsections (1), (2), and (3), except that:

1.  The term "taxable wages" means total gross wages.

2.  The initial contribution rate shall be 0.25 percent.

3.  Any election by an employer to be taxed under this subsection shall be effective January 1 and shall be taxed at the initial rate. Effective January 1 of the following year, the rate shall be computed based on 2 calendar quarters of chargeability and payroll; effective January 1 of the second year after such election, the rate shall be computed based on 6 quarters of chargeability and payroll; and effective January 1 of the third year after such election, the rate shall be computed based on 10 quarters of chargeability and payrolls. Each January 1 thereafter, the tax rates shall be computed based on 12 quarters of chargeability and payroll.

4.  An employer electing to be taxed under the provisions of this subsection shall make such election not later than 30 days prior to January 1 of the year for which the election is to be effective. Upon electing this financing method, such method shall be applicable for not less than 2 years.

5.  Any election under this subsection may be terminated by filing with the division, not later than 30 days prior to January 1, a written notice of termination.

History.--s. 8, ch. 18402, 1937; s. 5, ch. 19637, 1939; CGL 1940 Supp. 4151(495); s. 8, ch. 20685, 1941; s. 1, ch. 21981, 1943; s. 1, ch. 22946, 1945; s. 1, ch. 23918, 1947; s. 11, ch. 25035, 1949; ss. 5, 6, ch. 26879, 1951; s. 1, ch. 26958, 1951; ss. 2, 3, 4, ch. 26878, 1951; ss. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, ch. 28242, 1953; s. 4, ch. 29771, 1955; ss. 1, 2, 3, ch. 29817, 1955; s. 3, ch. 57-247; s. 2, ch. 57-268; ss. 1, 2, ch. 59-98; s. 2, ch. 61-119; s. 4, ch. 61-132; s. 1, ch. 63-154; s. 1, ch. 63-137; s. 1, ch. 65-243; s. 1, ch. 65-25; s. 1, ch. 67-225; s. 1, ch. 67-244; ss. 17, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1, ch. 70-296; s. 1, ch. 70-439; s. 6, ch. 71-225; ss. 1, 2, 3, ch. 71-227; s. 2, ch. 72-155; s. 118, ch. 73-333; s. 3, ch. 74-198; ss. 5, 7, ch. 77-262; s. 2, ch. 77-393; s. 5, ch. 77-399; s. 11, ch. 78-95; s. 2, ch. 78-295; s. 5, ch. 78-386; s. 3, ch. 79-293; s. 4, ch. 79-308; s. 1, ch. 79-355; s. 185, ch. 79-400; ss. 4, 8, 9, ch. 80-95; ss. 1, 2, ch. 80-252; s. 5, ch. 80-345; s. 10, ch. 83-174; s. 2, ch. 83-186; s. 2, ch. 83-285; s. 1, ch. 83-313; s. 2, ch. 84-40; s. 3, ch. 87-383; ss. 7, 8, ch. 88-289; ss. 1, 2, ch. 89-346; s. 3, ch. 92-38; s. 131, ch. 92-279; s. 55, ch. 92-326; s. 1, ch. 92-352; s. 7, ch. 94-347; ss. 6, 10, ch. 96-378; s. 5, ch. 96-411; s. 1063, ch. 97-103; s. 7, ch. 98-149; s. 21, ch. 2000-157.

Note.--Former s. 443.08.

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