Virtually all employers are covered by Wisconsin’s unemployment compensation law (WI Gen. Stat. Sec. 108.01 et seq.) and are therefore subject to the state unemployment insurance tax. For example, covered employers include entities that:
• Paid wages of $1,500 or more in any calendar quarter in either the current or preceding calendar year;
• Employed one or more persons for some part of a day in any 20 weeks in either the current or preceding calendar year;
• Employed 10 or more people in agricultural labor for some part of a day in 20 different weeks in the current or preceding calendar year, or paid cash wages of $20,000 for agricultural labor in any quarter of the current or preceding calendar year;
• Paid cash wages of $1,000 or more in a quarter for domestic service in the current or preceding calendar year;
• Paid wages for employment in Wisconsin and are subject to the Federal Unemployment Tax Act;
• Succeeded to the business of a covered Wisconsin employer;
• Voluntarily elect to be covered; and
• Are a nonprofit organization that employed as many as four people on a day in 20 different weeks or more in either the current or the preceding calendar year (WI Stat. Sec. 108.02).
The law excludes certain services from coverage, including, for example, services provided by:
• Students working for schools, colleges, or universities;
• Students working for work study programs;
• Spouses of students working for schools;
• Real estate and insurance salespersons;
• Newspaper distributors that are minors; and
• Part-time workers for nonprofit organizations (WI Stat. Sec. 108.02).