W-2 Set Up FAQs for California Substitute Teachers

Beginning in August 2020, Swing Education will begin transitioning all California substitute teachers to W-2 employees in compliance with California State Assembly Bill 5 (AB5). Below, you will find answers to the most common questions. For more details, see our article, W-2 Set Up: What's Changing, What's Not. 

What does AB5 mean for me?

Currently, Swing Subs are classified as independent contractors, also referred to by their tax status as “1099 contractors”.  With the passage of AB5, California workers formerly classified as independent contractors will be reclassified as employees. You can read the text of the bill here.


What are the advantages of being a W-2 employee?

As a California substitute teacher employed by Swing Education, you will be eligible for benefits including sick time accrual, and you may be eligible for health care and a 401k if you work a certain number of hours per week over a period of 12 months.

When will I learn more details about benefits?

During the setup process, you will be given a soft copy of the employee handbook, which lists benefits in detail.  Once fully set up, you will also be able to access the handbook on the home page of the ADP portal.       


What are the tax implications of being a W-2 employee?

As your employer, Swing will be responsible for taking payroll taxes from your paycheck. Upon set up, you will be asked to fill out IRS form W-4 and the California state withholding form so we know how much tax to deduct. At the end of January the following year, you will receive Form W-2 from Swing Education.


What if I don’t want to be a W-2 employee? 

By law, Swing is no longer permitted to retain California substitute teachers as independent contractors. If you do not wish to be a W-2 employee, contact us and we will deactivate your account.


Does being an employee mean that Swing determines my work schedule?

No. Swing Subs may continue to accept only the requests they wish to take.


May I continue to accept distance learning assignments?

Yes, Swing Subs may continue to accept any requests they'd like, whether distance learning or on site.


Will my pay rate change?

No. Schools will continue to set a day rate, consistent with the current process. However, all Swing Subs will be required to track their hours in the ADP timekeeping application.


Am I required to work a certain number of hours to maintain my status as an employee of Swing Education?

As long as you continue working, there is no minimum hourly requirement. If you do not accept and fulfill any requests within a 6 month period, Swing will consider that a “conditional quit” and will terminate your employment.


How will I get paid?

 For California substitute teachers, the payroll provider will change from Tipalti to ADP. During set up, we will walk you through how to access the ADP system, set up your account, and complete your I-9 and tax forms. You will continue to be paid weekly.


Will I receive overtime and meal breaks?

Yes, once converted to W-2 status, California subs are eligible for overtime and meal breaks in accordance with California labor laws. Details will be spelled out in the employee handbook you’ll receive and sign during set up.


Do I need to renew my requirements when I transition to W-2?

 No. Your requirements will continue to be renewed according to the same schedule. 


Are there any new requirements?

Yes. Since California substitute teachers will be employees of Swing Education, they are required by law to take sexual harassment training every 2 years. You will receive a notification from us when it is time to take harassment training. Training will be conducted online in the ADP platform.


Do I need to pay any fees to transition to W-2 status?

No. The cost of transitioning will be covered by Swing.


Will the schools I work with change?

Our school partners are also going through an AB5 conversion process. Please be aware that schools will be converted on an individual basis, and they may not all convert at the same time.  Additionally, school openings will be affected by COVID-19 guidelines, so you may initially see fewer requests.


I am currently on unemployment. If I transition to being an employee of Swing, what happens to my unemployment benefits?

Swing Subs currently receiving unemployment will continue to receive unemployment until they (a) work full time for a week or (b) earn more on a part-time basis than their unemployment benefit. This applies equally to Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits, and applies regardless of the Sub's prior status as an independent contractor.