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Report your payroll

Questions about anything here? Email us at saifinfo@saif.com or call 800.285.8525.

Payroll reporting

How and where to submit your payroll report, as well as how to fix and print it for your records.

To report payroll online, log in or quick fileOr report by:

  • Fax: 503.584.9807
  • Mail: SAIF, 400 High Street SE, Salem, OR 97312

Tips for reporting:

  • COVID-19 exclusions. Exclude furlough pay and administrative leave pay related to the pandemic.
  • Report form. At the end of each payroll reporting period, we'll send you a form to report the actual "subject" payroll for covered workers.
  • Due date. Please get your payroll report to SAIF by the due date, along with any payment due. If you don't, your coverage may cancel.
  • Round amounts. Please round payroll numbers to the nearest dollar. Do not include cents.
  • Keep records. Keep all records supporting your payroll numbers, including verifiable time records.
  • Online reporting. If you submit your payroll report online, or fax it to us, you do not need to send the original by mail.
  • Always report payroll. You must submit a payroll report even if your account has been canceled or you have a premium audit scheduled. Report payroll if you have no employees or payroll for the period. Enter "0."

To change a payroll report you've already submitted:

  1. Write "REVISED" at the top of the sheet
  2. Cross out the incorrect payroll
  3. Write the correct numbers next to it
  4. Sign, date, and email or fax the report to us

To print a copy of a final audit or premium report for your records:

  1. Select Review from the Payroll Report menu.
  2. Scroll to the reporting period for the report you wish to print.
  3. Click the print icon.

How to know if you have an installment account

Employers who make installment payments will get one payroll report at the end of each policy year. 

We'll send you a request to report payroll before the reporting period is over so you can calculate the premium for that period. The premium impact from this payroll report will show up on your next invoice as "final audit voluntary," which shows the premium impact after filing the policy period payroll report on Installment & Annual Pre-Pay accounts. 

A physical final audit is an audit performed by a representative of SAIF who will help you review your payroll records to ensure accurate payroll has been reported in the correct classifications.

How to report your payroll

Employers with installment accounts will receive one voluntary final audit at the end of each policy year.

  1. To get started, go to your Workers' Compensation Payroll Report or SAIF's online payroll reporting system
  2. Payroll report period. The payroll reported should be the amount paid to workers during the specified period on the report. For more information, see "What to report."
  3. Classification description. This section shows classification descriptions that reflect your business operations. 
  4. Classification code. A class code is a number used for your payroll descriptions. For more, see our Premium and rate overview page
  5. Payroll for covered workers (subject payroll). Enter your payroll for each class code and each period.
  6. Total of all subject payroll listed above. Add lines of payroll from Step 5.
  7. Sign the report and enter your title, the date, and your contact information.
  8. Submit your report.

How to know if you have a premium reporting account

You have a premium reporting account if you complete payroll reports (audits) and make payments at the end of a reporting period. We'll send you a request to report payroll before the reporting period expires so you can calculate the premium for that period. The premium impact from this payroll report will show up on your invoice as  "premium report," which shows the premium impact after submitting subject payroll for a specific reporting period. 

A reconciliation final audit shows up on your invoice to reconcile all payroll reports completed during the policy period. It shows the premium impact summarized at the end of the policy period for policies completing two or more premium reports or policies in combination. 

A physical final audit is an audit performed by a representative of SAIF who will work with you to review your payroll records to ensure accurate payroll has been reported in the correct classifications.

How to report your payroll

  1. To get started, go to your sheet titled Workers' Compensation final audit or premium report or to SAIF's online payroll reporting system.
  2. Payroll report period. Start on Page 1. The payroll reported should be the amount paid to workers during the specified period shown on the report. See "What to report" for more.
  3. Classification description. These are descriptions based on your business operations. 
  4. Classification code. This number is used for your payroll descriptions. For more, see our Premium and rate overview.
  5. Rate. The rate is set by the NCCI and the insurance carrier. It applies per $100 of payroll. 
  6. Adjusted rate. This is the base rate plus your experience rating modification and any other premium modifiers.
  7. Payroll for covered workers (subject payroll). Enter your payroll for each class code and each period.
  8. Calculate your premium. Multiply your payroll by your adjusted rate for each class on your report. See the "whom to report" section for information on which workers are covered and which are not.
  9. Total subject payroll. Add lines of payroll from step 7. 
  10. Total premium. Add lines of premium from step 8.
  11. Carry the total premium amount over to page 2, line 1.
  12. Premium calculation worksheet. Follow the instructions on page 2. Remember, SAIF's online payroll reporting system performs all of the calculations for you.
  13. Sign the report and enter your title, the date, and include payment.
  14. Submit your report.

What to report

What needs to be reported —types of wages, salaries, and pay — on your final audit or premium report.

Here is a list of examples of what to report, in alphabetical order. This is not a complete list, so if you have questions or need help, please contact your agent or SAIF.

What to report More information
Assumed wages These workers, if covered by election or statute, must be reported. Use the assumed minimum wage established by National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) or their actual wage, whichever is larger. SAIF will notify you of the applicable assumed wage.  

Note: You are not required to pay these workers the assumed minimum wage. It is only for payroll reporting purposes:
  • Volunteers
  • Municipal volunteers (not including volunteers in class code 8411)
  • Work experience trainees
  • School-directed vocational education project trainees
  • Apprentice trainees
  • Inmates (both incarcerated and community service)
  • Sheltered workshop trainees/clients
Base pay Salary, hourly, daily payroll, and so on
Bereavement This is leave pay paid when a worker misses work due to a family member's death. It is not excludable as vacation pay.
Bonus pay

Bonus pay to corporate officers
Report anticipated bonus pay. "Anticipated" means bonus payments are made:

  • To offset a pay cut or reduction in wages
  • Instead of a raise in wages
  • As rewards for meeting or exceeding production goals
  • For absenteeism or attendance
  • Annually, and substantial to the extent that it is reasonable for a worker to rely on the bonus I the same way as regular wages or salary
  • Made to covered corporate officers who are directors and have substantial ownership interest. These are considered subject payroll
Note: Unanticipated bonuses paid more than twice in a policy year become anticipated due to their frequency and must be included. Anticipated bonuses should be reported even though the amount may not be known in advance of payment.
Children or family members If they are paid a wage
Commission pay
Corporate officers If they are listed as covered in the "Who to report" section
Domestic employees If coverage is endorsed on the policy, or if paid by an entity that is not a sole proprietorship or a partnership
Exchange of labor value The value of the labor being exchanged
Holiday pay Includes any personal holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries
Houses or apartments Fair market value including housing allowance/payments
Incentive pay Also when it's called a bonus
Individual retirement accounts (IRAs) Payments by the employer to a worker's IRA
Jury duty pay If paid by the employer
Labor portion of contracts Unless it meets the exclusions in subcontractor information
Limited liability company members If they are listed as covered in the "Who to report" section
Lodging/meals value Provided to the extent shown in your records. Does not include houses or apartments
Overtime pay The straight-time portion is always included.  

Example: If straight time is $6 per hour - and overtime is $9 per hour for each hour worked over 8 hours in a day or 40 hours in a week - use the $6 straight-time portion for each hour of overtime paid. Include both the straight-time and overtime portions for payroll assigned to a stevedoring, freight handling, or tallier classification followed by the letter "F."
Paid time off (PTO) PTO plans replace traditional vacation and sick pay plans. 

Be aware that by replacing a traditional vacation plan with a PTO plan, most employers will give up the workers' comp vacation pay exclusion. However, some PTO wages may be excludable if the employer develops a tracking system to record prearranged time off for purposes of vacation. This would not include prearranged medical exams or procedures.
Partners If they are listed as covered in the "Who to report" section
Payroll adjustments Made by the employer to raise workers' wages to federal, state, or local minimum wage, whichever is higher
Personal days
Piecework pay
Pretax contributions to group benefit plans Employee pretax contributions to group benefit plans or cafeteria plans. Also called "salary reduction plans" where pretax dollars are deducted from workers' gross payroll for payment towards these benefits:

  • Retirement savings
  • Health insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs)
  • Health savings accounts
Prevailing wage pay (Davis-Bacon Act or similar state statute)   Except for fringe benefit amounts paid directly into a third-party pension plan qualified under IRC Sections 401(a) and 501(a) or into a group insurance plan
Safety bonuses

Reported if paid to offset pay cuts or a reduction of wages.  

Also reported if the requirement that bonuses be distributed in accordance with a written plan tied strictly to safe working practices is not met.  

For details, see the SAIF guide on safety bonuses and safety bonus plans.

Shift differential pay
Sick leave pay Includes maternity
Sole proprietors If they are listed as covered in the "Who to report" section
Stock bonus plans If employees get company stock as part of their pay
Standby/idle time/on-call pay
Travel pay Wages paid to cover travel time to or from the worksite.

Here is a list of examples of what to exclude, in alphabetical order. This is not a complete list, so if you have questions or need help, please contact your agent or SAIF.

What to exclude More information
Bonus pay

"Unanticipated" bonus pay is excluded if it is:

  • An arbitrary and gratuitous (unwarranted) disbursement made to any one worker no more than twice in a policy period
  • Not part of an oral or written employment agreement  

See the "Wages and pay to include" section for anticipated bonus reporting requirements

Corporate officers Excluded if they meet specific criteria in the "Who to report" section
Domestic household employee pay Excluded unless coverage is endorsed on the policy or unless pay is through the payroll of an entity that is not a sole proprietorship or partnership
Expenses

Expense reimbursements and flat expense allowances paid to employees may be excluded from payroll reporting provided all 3 of these statements are true:

  • The expense or allowance happened while doing the business of the employer  

and  

  • The amount of each employee's expense or allowance payment is shown separately in the records of the employer  

and  

  • The amount of the expense or allowance approximates the actual expenses incurred by the employee in the conduct of their work. If receipts are not available, a maximum of $75 per day or the negotiated labor contract amount is excludable
Group pension or retirement plans, health savings accounts (HSAs), flexible spending accounts (FSAs), and health insurance or life insurance plans Excluded if they are payments by the employer directly into these plans and not made through employee-authorized salary reduction from the worker's gross pay
Limited liability company members Excluded if they meet specific criteria in the "Who to report" section
Overtime excess pay

Exclude the portion of the traditional overtime rate which is in excess of the straight-time rate

Example: If straight-time rate is $6 per hour, and overtime rate is $9 for each hour worked over eight hours in a day or 40 hours in a week, exclude the extra $3 per hour paid for overtime

Partners Excluded if they meet specific criteria in the "Who to report" section
Perks

Excluded if provided by the employer and may be taxable to the worker

Examples:

  • Personal use of a company-provided automobile
  • Airplane flights
  • Incentive vacations (for example, contest winners)
  • Discounts on goods or services
  • Club memberships
  • Life insurance
  • Owner's medical insurance
  • Educational assistance
  • Relocation and moving expenses
Preferred workers pay Excluded for those employed under the Preferred Worker Program
Profit sharing pay Exclusion applies to payments that are anticipated by the worker as outlined in a written plan and that create a legal obligation to make payments distributed from net realized profits
Rewards value Exclude the value of special rewards for individual invention or discovery
Safety bonuses

Exclude payments that are anticipated by the worker and distributed in accordance with a written plan tied strictly to safe working practices. A safety bonus shall be included if paid to offset pay cuts or a reduction of wages

For details, see the SAIF guide on safety bonuses and safety bonus plans

Saw rental Exclude only for falling, bucking, or lumbering work done under class code 2702 when workers furnish their own power equipment, such as chain saws. If there is an agreement that the rental value of the equipment is included in the amount paid to the worker, you may exclude the rental value not to exceed 20% of the total amount paid
Severance pay Exclude unless it's for time worked
Sole proprietors Exclude unless personal election coverage has been endorsed to your policy. See the "Who to report" section for more information.
Stock options Exclude the difference between the employee purchase price and sale price
Third-party sick pay/disability insurance Exclude if paid by a third party or insurance company
Tips Exclude tips and other gratuities
Travel expenses Permitted by federal, state, or local government contract, in lieu of verifiable receipts for incurred expenses
Tuition reimbursement
Uniform allowance Exclude uniforms required for the job
Vacation pay

Exclude when paid. Does not include holiday pay or sick leave. Union vacation pay deductions may be excluded when paid directly into a union vacation fund for the employees

By replacing a traditional vacation plan with a paid time off (PTO) plan, most employers will forgo the workers' comp vacation pay exclusion. However, some PTO wages may be excludable if the employer develops a tracking system to record prearranged time off for purposes of vacation. This would not include prearranged medical exams or procedures

Who to report

What people need to be covered — and who can be left off — your payroll report.

Note: This information is meant to give you direction to submit a payroll report. You should not consider it legal advice. If you're not sure if a worker is covered, please contact your agent, SAIF (800.285.8525), or the Oregon Workers' Compensation Division. See the full list of workers excluded by law

  • Some workers excluded. Not all workers are required to be covered by workers' comp insurance. Covered workers are also called "subject workers." Under Oregon law, you are required to cover workers you "engage to furnish services for remuneration" who are subject to your "direction and control," except those workers excluded under the law.  
  • Some workers not paid in cash. Remuneration (payment) could be something of value other than cash. For example, it may be considered remuneration to give free movie tickets to a theater usher. 

  • Special rules may apply to covering business owners. Please contact your agent or SAIF for information about your specific business.

Verifiable time records

Carefully prepare your payroll report and keep good records. You could lower your workers' comp costs.

  • Verifiable time records are records supported by original, accurate timekeeping. Timekeeping can include timecards, calendars, planners or logs. Estimates, percentages, or ratios will not be accepted as verifiable.
  • If you keep verifiable time records, you may pay less. In most instances, if you have more than one classification on your insurance policy and your workers shift duties between those class codes, you can use verifiable time records to separate the payroll of the workers and report it in more than one classification on the payroll report. This can lower your premium.
  • If you do not keep verifiable time records, you may pay more. Oregon Administrative Rules require you to report wages under the highest rated classification for any part of the worker's duties if you choose not to keep verifiable time records. This can raise your premium.

  • Estimated percentages or ratios will not be accepted. Verifiable time records must be supported by original entries from other records. This includes, but is not limited to:
    • Timecards
    • Calendars
    • Planners
    • Daily logs prepared by the worker or the worker's direct supervisor or manager
  • Record accurately and in a timely manner. Record total daily hours worked in each job class code for each worker who works in more than one classification. You may also use another basis for tracking time, such as daily, weekly, or monthly if you choose. Create time records at or near the time the work is performed.
  • Salaried workers must record time. Salaried workers who work in more than one class code must also keep time records. Convert their salary to an hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly wage.
  • Include a description of work done. The records must include a description of the work for each class code used. Note: Records requiring additional explanation or interpretation are not considered verifiable.
  • Total and convert into payroll dollars. Total the time worked in each class code for a given pay period and convert this into payroll dollars by classification.  
  • Prorate payroll without a class code. Prorate payroll for holidays, nonexcludable bonuses, and sick pay to the various class codes applied to each worker. Also do this for all other forms of payroll that do not directly apply to a specific class code. If you do not prorate, you must assign this payroll to the highest-rated class code applied to the worker.  
  • See a blank verifiable time record. Download in in PDF or Word. The format in this sample document is suggested, not required.
  • See Oregon Administrative Rule 836-042-0060 for more. Navigate to the 0600 section to learn more about the division of payroll of individual workers

  • Class code 0083 employers must maintain verifiable time records. Please note that apportioning payroll by acreage is not permitted for cattle handling under class code 0083.
  • Here's how to split farm worker wages by class code. A farm employer with more than one classification shown on their policy may split worker wages by class code in one of two methods. Note: Employers may use only one method. Report all workers using the same method:  
    1. By calculating a ratio of crop acreage in each class compared to the total acreage
      or
    2. By keeping verifiable records of hours spent by each worker in each crop or activity
  • Not keeping verifiable time records? You must apportion your payroll by acreage percentages. For each class code used:
    1. Add all the acreage with crops in each class.
    2. Divide the class acreage by the total acreage. Include pasture and grazing acres.
    3. Multiply the percentage for each class code by the reportable payroll. The result is the payroll to be reported in each class code.

Classification and class codes

Your business is assigned a class code designed to describe your operations. This class code affects your premium rates.

  • What is the purpose of class codes? The purpose of the workers' comp classification system is to group employers with similar operations into classifications so that:
    • Your assigned classification reflects operations common to businesses like yours.
    • The rate charged reflects the exposure to loss common to businesses like yours.  
  • How do class codes apply? Classification rules apply separately to each legal entity, even if multiple entities have common or majority ownership.
  • What if a single class code does not describe your business? The classification that most closely describes your business must be assigned.
  • What if the system assigns more than one class code to your business? When a worker's duties interchange between two or more class codes, you may allocate his or her wages between the classes only if you keep verifiable time records.  

  • SAIF doesn't post class codes on our website. Why not? There are 550 codes at last count. Many of them are very similar to each other, but the differences are important. That's why you should get expert help with your class codes. If you get the wrong class code, you could pay too much. So please call us at 800.285.8525 with class code questions. See more about class codes.

  • Each legal entity is classified. Classification rules apply separately to each legal entity.
  • Most businesses have just one class code. The system assigns one basic class code that best describes your business, with some exceptions. This code is for manufacturing, assembly, fabrication, service, and all other business types not listed in the section "Specific classification rules."
  • The entire business gets the class code. Your business is classified, not the individual employments, occupations, departments, or operations.
  • Businesses are classified by types of labor. Most basic classifications include all the various types of labor in the business, such as supervision, safety, quality control, engineering, training, warehouse, storeroom, parts room, tool room, maintenance, janitorial, watchpersons, security, shipping and receiving. Certain exceptions are found in the logging, lumber, and trucking industries.
  • Non-work pay gets the same class code as the worker. Non-work pay types are assigned to the class code for work normally performed by the worker. Examples include holiday, sick, nonexcludable bonuses, meetings, training, safety meetings, standby, idle time, or on-call duty. See the "Verifiable time records" for employees assigned to more than one classification.

  • When does your business get more than one class code? The system assigns more than one classification if the basic classification describing your business requires certain operations to be separately rated or if you operate more than one business.
  • Your business must meet 3 conditions to qualify. For a separate classification, your additional or secondary business operation must meet all 3 of these conditions. If the additional or secondary business does not meet these conditions, it must be separately classified only if the rate for the additional business is higher than or equal to the rate of the basic classification for the principal business. Your business must:  
    1. Exist as a separate business if the principal business ceased to exist
    2. Be located separately — in a separate building, separate floor, or otherwise physically separated from the principal business by structural partitions or walls
    3. Maintain separate payroll records for each operation

Some operations in a business are so unusual that they are separately classified even though they are not conducted as a secondary business. A few common examples are:

  • Aviation (all operations of the flying and ground crews) 
  • New construction or alterations 
  • Sawmill operations 
  • Stevedoring

If you disagree with a class code assigned to your policy, you may appeal.

  1. Contact your SAIF representative to try to resolve the dispute.
  2. If you still disagree with SAIF's position:  
    • Send a written request to the regulatory services manager for the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI):
      • Michael Craddock
        Underwriting dispute consultant
        NCCI, Inc.
        901 Peninsula Corporate Circle
        Boca Raton, FL, 33487-1362
        P: 561.706.4579
        F: 561.893.5365
        michael_craddock@ncci.com
    • Submit documentation supporting your position, including your record of attempts to resolve the dispute.  
    • The regulatory services manager will research each area of concern and provide a written explanation on the correct application of the rule or classification in dispute.  
  3. If you disagree with the explanation provided by NCCI's regulatory services manager, they will arrange for a meeting before the Oregon Workers' Compensation Rating System Review and Advisory Committee (ORAC) upon written notice of the ongoing dispute. ORAC's dispute resolution service allows employers and insurance companies to resolve conflicts without the burden of legal fees and potential conflict. An employer who believes the rules or classifications of the workers' comp system have not been properly applied to his or her policy can request assistance from ORAC in resolving the dispute.  
  4. ORAC has the authority to hear disputes relating to:
    • Experience rating modification factors
    • Class code assignments  
    • Application of rules in NCCI manuals

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