|Name||Getting Started... Roles & Responsibilities|
|Description||an Acumen Final video|
Welcome and congratulations on becoming an employer of record! We are pleased to be your fiscal agent and we look forward to working with you and your employees. This video training series presents general information to support and assist you in your role as an employer. NOTE: always check with your program to verify details of this information and specifics of the law as they apply to you. If you have questions, please contact us. This is the first module in Acumen’s Employer Training series: Getting Started in Self-Direction – Roles & Responsibilities! About Self-Directed Services. “Self-directed services means that Participants, or their representatives if applicable, have decision-making authority over certain services and take direct responsibility to manage their services with the assistance of a system of available supports.” NOTES: This applies to Medicaid, as applicable, and other funding sources. Use of the term “you” is inclusive and refers to the Participant and/or designated representatives. About Acumen. You are in charge of your care. With self-direction, you have the authority and direct responsibility to manage your services. We’re here to help. Since 1995, Acumen has supported thousands of Participants, across the nation, as their fiscal agent, to help manage employer-related financial and other responsibilities! Welcome to Acumen Fiscal Agent and congratulations on enrolling as an employer of record! We are excited to be your fiscal agent and we look forward to working with you and your employees. You may be new to the “employer of record” concept and working with a fiscal agent, so we created the Employer Training Series. This is the introductory video to say hello and help you get started. If you’ve worked with a fiscal agent before, this information explains some of the terms we use through the series and reviews the services and supports that are available to you. This video answers 4 key questions to help you navigate the self-direction process. 1)Who are the key players in my self-directed program and what are their roles and responsibilities? 2) What are some of the key terms and steps in the process that I need to understand? 3) How can I learn more about being a successful employer? 4) Who should I contact when I need assistance? There are several critical roles that individuals play when working together in a self-directed program. It’s important that you, as the employer of record, are clear about your role and the roles and responsibilities of each key player. Before we cover those roles and responsibilities, let’s briefly talk about some of the terms or the lingo you will hear and use throughout your employer experience. Terms to know. Acumen – The Fiscal Agent that helps you manage employer-related financial and other responsibilities pertaining to your self-directed services. Authorization – Documentation that specifies approved services, service codes, and number of units, hours, or dollars for delivery of goods and services included in the Plan of Care. Case Manager – Person assigned by the Program to work with you and facilitate details of your self-directed program (a Case Manager may be known by other titles, depending on Program terminology). Employee – Person who works for you and provides services to the Participant. Employer – Person who hires and supervises staff to provide services to the Participant (the Employer may also be the Participant). Fiscal Agent – (Acumen) provides payroll processing, tax services, payments and other administrative functions authorized by the Program. Participant – Person receiving services authorized by the Program (the Participant may also be the Employer). Payment Services – Payroll Services (employee-related payments and processing); Vendor Services (vendor-related payments and processing). Plan of Care – Plan you create with your Case Manager and team to determine Participant needs and how to meet them, based on the Participant’s preferences, choices, and abilities. It assists the Participant in directing their services. It includes the number, type and duration of approved goods and services. Program Administrator – Entity that manages the Program and/or waiver funding. Here’s how these work together: The Case Manager - remember, this person may be known by another title in your Program, works with you and the team to create the Participant’s Plan of Care. The Case Manager submits the Plan of Care to the appropriate Program Administrator for approval. There may be several levels of approval required. Once the Plan of Care is approved, an Authorization is sent to Acumen so we may begin processing payments for services up to the Program and Authorization limits. That’s the big picture! Now let’s look at key players’ roles and responsibilities in more detail. Acumen is your Fiscal Agent. Acumen is the company hired to manage your employer-related fiscal, that is – financial, responsibilities as an employer of record. There are many aspects to our role and we take them all seriously. First, we will help you with enrollments of the Participant, employer and employee by collecting all required paperwork necessary for the Internal Revenue Service (the IRS), state and local taxing authorities, and the Department of Labor (or DOL). This includes processing and tracking employee background checks and training, if applicable. Acumen also will provide training and ongoing support for you, as the employer of record. Once you are enrolled, Acumen will process your employee payroll and payments according to Program guidelines. Acumen supplies the upfront cost of the payroll, taxes and deductions, and then bills the Program for reimbursement. For tax payments, Acumen will comply with all employer and employee tax withholding and reporting requirements on your behalf. These include employee payroll deductions, processing payments for the employer and employee taxes to state, federal and local taxing authorities on the employer’s behalf. Another employer responsibility that Acumen will handle on your behalf is prepare and send W2s to your employees and 1099s to vendors and subcontractors, if applicable. These tax documents are a record of the money that was paid to your employees and vendors and/or subcontractors, if your Program allows, throughout the previous calendar year. The forms are required when these individuals file their personal income taxes. Acumen distributes the forms by January 31st each year. Acumen also manages reports and tracking for you. Acumen will track your spending and report to you (the employer) and the Program. At agreed-upon intervals, Acumen will send you an Account Statement that reflects all spending and tracks other important metrics. You should review the Account Statement carefully as soon as you receive it to ensure your employee(s) were paid as you intended, and your account details are accurate. Acumen is also responsible to respond to complaints and issues related to payment problems and report them to your Program, as required. As the employer of record, it is essential for you to follow your Program rules. Acumen must also report any suspected misuse of funds. Acumen will respond to Workers’ Compensation claims. In the event of any on-the-job injury, have your employee seek medical attention, and then contact Acumen to review and report, and possibly begin a claim process. Acumen will also respond to unemployment claims and verifications of employment requests on your behalf. Acumen uses our own money to pay your support personnel upfront. Then, we bill the state or Program for reimbursement based on the record of payments made to your employees. Acumen does not receive any funding in advance, so we are not holding any of the Participant’s money, at any time. Acumen tracks all payments we make on your behalf and then bills the funding source for reimbursement. That is why it is crucial that all payments follow Program guidelines; otherwise we risk not being reimbursed for services we have already paid to your employees and will have to bill you for uncovered program expenses. That highlights Acumen’s role. Let’s continue with these frequently-used terms. The Authorization is the documentation that lists all approved services, service codes, and number of units, hours, or dollars for delivery of goods and services included in the Participant’s Plan of Care. The Case Manager plays an essential role in many phases of your self-directed experience. To begin, the Case Manager assists in helping to determine Participant’s eligibility, the goods and services that are available to the Participant, and how many dollars and/or hours (or units) of service are available. Once eligibility is determined, the Case Manager is responsible to work with you and the team to create the Plan of Care that spells out the type and amount of services the Participant will receive based on his or her needs. The Plan of Care also indicates how you intend to use the services throughout the year. Going forward, the Case Manager is also responsible to reassess and evaluate any necessary changes in the Plan of Care and provide Authorization, and any revisions, to allow Acumen to make payment for those services. The employee is a person who works for you and provides services and supports described in the Plan of Care to the Participant. The employee is responsible to fill out and turn in to you (the employer) all their enrollment paperwork, which includes agreeing to all required background screenings, if applicable. The Employee will also provide the services as you instruct. They will complete and submit their time worked to you for verification in a thorough and timely manner. They are also required to follow any program rules, policies or procedures, and complete training requirements as you direct. As the employer, you have many responsibilities. The employer is the person who represents the Participant (or the client) by handling the day-to-day business matters of the account. The employer may be the Participant acting on his or her own behalf, or a designated representative, such as the Participant’s parent or legal guardian. As the employer, you are recognized by the Internal Revenue Service (the IRS) as a person who employs workers and pays wages in compensation. The employer role comes with legal responsibilities, including reporting and paying employer taxes. However, Acumen Fiscal Agent helps you by managing the financial pieces so you can focus on your other employer responsibilities. Other employer responsibilities include recruiting, hiring, supervising, and terminating employees, and establishing pay rates. Employers ensure that all new hire paperwork is complete and turned in to Acumen to complete the hiring process. Employers keep and secure all employee records (such as time sheets and records, daily logs, documentation, disciplinary actions, etc.) Employers must provide a safe work environment, train and supervise the day-to-day work of employees. Employers review, approve, and submit employee time records to Acumen. Employers review Account Statements from Acumen and ensure they are correct. Employers are responsible to follow all Program and Medicaid or funding source rules, making sure to maintain Authorization limits. Employers will review Account Statements from Acumen to ensure accuracy. The employer must comply with all Department of Labor (DOL) laws that include: non-discrimination, hiring only those individuals who are legally authorized to work in the United States, paying at least minimum wage, maintaining a safe and harassment free workplace, and displaying all employee resource posters. These are posters required by law to be displayed in the workplace that notify employees of their rights and resources available to them. Visit the Department of Labor (DOL) website corresponding with your state to find out which posters to display. By taking on the role of the employer, it is your responsibility to be familiar with current laws. This responsibility includes that you know and abide by Program, all Medicaid, if applicable, and funding source rules. Any deviation from these rules may result in the employer (you) paying for services out of your own pocket. For instance, if you choose to schedule your employees to work over your authorized amounts, you are legally responsible to pay your employees for the time worked. Budget your funds responsibly and accurately so this doesn’t happen. You must also ensure that employees’ time is reported accurately. We encourage you to contact your Case Manager for a complete list of Program guidelines. As the employer of record, you are responsible to ensure your employees complete any and all required training, if applicable, in a timely fashion and stay current on all training and any required renewals.The Participant is the center of the self-directed program. The Participant may also be known as the client and is the person who is receiving services and for whom the Plan of Care is designed and approved. The Participant may also be the Employer. We’ve talked about key roles and relationships. Whether you are new to self-direction or a seasoned pro, Acumen has additional training resources available to promote your success as the employer. Let’s take a look. Acumen Employer Training Series - Module 1: Getting Started in Self-Direction: Roles and Responsibilities. Module 2: Interviewing and Hiring New Employees will take you through the recruitment and hiring process. It includes how to create a job description and how to post jobs. It reviews tips for better interviewing and highlights things you should know about equal opportunity and avoiding discrimination in the hiring process. It covers the enrollment materials that are required for new employees and it provides specific direction about when your employee can begin working. You will receive a Good to Go notice from Acumen when your employee can start delivering services under the Plan of Care. Module 3: Employee Performance and Terminations includes how to set clear expectations for employee performance. It offers suggestions to create and maintain good working relationships with employees and how to recognize and appreciate employee’s efforts and good performance. It helps you address employee performance issues in a timely manner with appropriate action and documentation. It covers things to consider when you terminate an employee and it emphasizes that you must do so without violating labor laws. It covers what to do when terminated employees apply for unemployment benefits, as well as what to do regarding employment verification procedures for active and terminated employees. It gives direction about what required forms to complete. The module covers other important information about laws that dictate when final checks must be issued, and directs you to learn what applies in your state, etc. Module 4: Privacy, Fraud Protection, and Safety includes material to help you protect Participant privacy and confidentiality. You will learn more about privacy laws, protecting your employee’s personal information, tips for providing a safe and secure workplace, and how to recognize and report fraud and abuse. It includes information about Workers’ Compensation. Module 5: Employee Payroll and Budgeting topics include how Acumen processes payments within my Authorization limits; understanding the difference between Cost to You versus the employee rate; how to set or change pay rates for employees; know when employees can start working; program limitations regarding employee hours; how to submit employee time (using paper-based timesheets or an Acumen web-based time entry system) and how to avoid common errors; payment options schedules and due dates, and reissuing checks. Module 6: Vendor Services and Payments defines vendor and vendor goods and services, and gives tips for vendor selection. It outlines how Acumen approves and processes vendor payments and approved out-of-pocket expenses, if they are allowed by the Program, and covers year-end reporting of vendor payments. Module 7: Understanding Account Statements and Pay Stubs shows how to read Account Statements and use them to track your spending, and describes various employer and employee tax calculations and deductions that include FUTA and SUTA , Workers’ Compensation and FICA (Social Security and Medicare), and it outlines federal, state, and local (if applicable) income tax withholding, and it recaps employee pay stub information. Module 8: Introduction to an Acumen web-based time entry system. Acumen created these resources to contribute to your success as the employer of record, and to help you to protect yourself both legally and financially. Acumen will instruct you how to access the online employer training series. Let’s review these important terms from today’s session. Acumen Fiscal Agent (Acumen) is the company hired to manage your employer-related fiscal (financial) responsibilities. The Case Manager is the Program representative who works with you and facilitates details of your self-directed program and helps develop and communicate approved services and budget allotments to Acumen. The employee is the individual hired by the employer of record to provide the services outlined in the Participant’s Plan of Care and approved for delivery in the Authorization. The employer is the person who handles the day-to-day business matters on the account. The employer may be the Participant (client) acting on his/her own behalf, or a designated representative such as the Participant’s parent or legal guardian. The Participant (also known as the Client) is the center of the self-directed program. This person will have a personalized Plan of Care which is detailed and approved in the Authorization. The Participant may also be the employer. Now to wrap up, at the end of this presentation there is a list of important Acumen contacts. This lists resources in place to support you in your role as an employer of record: general and program-specific customer service telephone and fax numbers; mailing address; contact information for Workers’ Compensation issues; specific phone number for employment verifications. If you suspect fraud, call Acumen’s Customer Service Department so we may notify the appropriate authorities. If you observe or suspect abuse, call your local Adult and Child Abuse Hotline or your local police department. Congratulations! This concludes Module 1 of Acumen Employer Training: Getting Started in Self-Direction – Roles & Responsibilities. We hope you have a clear understanding of the key players in your self-directed program, their roles and responsibilities and the resources and key contacts available to you. Welcome to Self-Direction! Welcome to Acumen!
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