W-2 Set Up FAQs for Teachers

In August 2020, Swing Education began converting California teachers to W-2 employees. In this article, we answer the most common questions regarding W-2 conversion. See also:  W-2 Set Up: What's Changing, What's Not. 


What does this transition mean for me?

Prior to W-2 conversion, Swing Subs were classified as independent contractors, also referred to by their tax status as “1099 contractors.”  As of January 1, 2021, all California Swing Subs must be W-2 employees to accept requests on the Swing platform. Please note: by law, Swing Education is not permitted to retain Swing Subs as 1099 contractors in the state of California.


Will Swing convert teachers outside California to W-2 employees?

Not at this time. However, we will notify you should your state be set to convert. Swing Subs outside California may continue to pick up teaching assignments as 1099 contractors.


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. Thus, we have made the decision to transition all teachers to employees. If you do not wish to be a W-2 employee, contact us and we will deactivate your account.


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

As a teacher employed by Swing Education, you will be eligible for benefits such as sick time accrual. Additionally, you are eligible for health care and a 401k after you consistently work 30 or more hours per week over a period of 12 months. Learn more about other perks here.

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 your state's tax withholding form, if applicable, so we know how much tax to deduct. At the end of January each year, you will receive Form W-2 from Swing Education.


When will I receive form W-2?

Form W-2 is the tax form reporting your earnings as an employee, typically sent out at the end of January. If you completed any teaching requests as a W-2 employee in year 2020, you will receive form W-2 in January of 2021. If you are still a 1099 independent contractor, you will receive form 1099-MISC, the same for you received from Swing in prior years.


If you are a W-2 employee, you will find your form W-2 in your ADP account. Swing will also mail out a paper copy. Be sure the mailing address in your ADP account is up-to-date.


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?

As a W-2 employee, you will be paid hourly and will be required to fill out a timesheet. Please review our help article, W-2 Pay FAQs, for information on how pay rates for W-2 employees are calculated. 


Does Swing take a cut of my pay? 

No. Our partner schools set the pay rate for substitute teachers. Swing earns money by applying a surcharge to the rate paid by schools.


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

Yes, you are required to work 7 days per month. Learn more.


How will I get paid?

Once you transition to an employee, 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, teachers are eligible for overtime and meal (lunch)  breaks in accordance with your state's labor laws. Details will be spelled out in the employee handbook you’ll receive and sign during set up, and you can always email us with questions below.


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. You must sign the COVID-19 Acknowledgement Form in your Swing account in order to view and accept requests. Additionally, certain states require teachers to take sexual harassment training sessions periodically. You will receive a notification from us when it is time to take training specific to your state. 


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?

No, you will still be eligible to teach at the same schools. Please note that 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.