Operational Gaze:
How to Run Payroll in Wyoming?

December 11th 2023

Are you handling payroll tasks in Wyoming, either as an employer or an employee? It’s crucial for both parties to grasp the rules and tax laws in Wyoming. Employers have to make sure that pay is accurate and employees receive it on time.

This guide is meant to help you understand the important rules and steps involved in Wyoming’s payroll. Its aim is to make the process clearer and simpler for everyone involved.

This Article Covers

Laws That Affect Payroll Procedures in Wyoming
Worker Classifications in Wyoming
Payroll Forms and Relevant Bodies in Wyoming
Applicable Taxes in Wyoming
Key Pay Elements That Impact Payroll in Wyoming
Step-by-Step Guide to Payroll in Wyoming

Laws That Affect Payroll Procedures in Wyoming

Wyoming Laws

  • Wyoming Labor Laws: The labor regulations in the Wyoming code cover crucial aspects such as how wages are distributed among employees, the provisions for sick leave entitlements in various circumstances, and the measures in place for workers’ compensation. It’s important to note that Wyoming’s laws are designed to encompass federal regulations, particularly the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), ensuring a comprehensive approach to labor standards.
  • Minimum Wage: Wyoming adheres to the federal standard for its minimum wage, currently set at $7.25 per hour. This aligns with the federal baseline, ensuring consistency across the state with national regulations.
  • Overtime Compensation: Non-exempt employees in Wyoming are entitled to receive 1.5 times their standard wage for any hours worked exceeding 40 in a given workweek. This policy mirrors federal standards, providing fair compensation for extra work hours.
  • Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML): Wyoming has implemented a program offering paid leave for eligible employees dealing with specific family or medical situations. Employers are mandated to contribute to this program, ensuring support for employees during critical personal circumstances.
  • Equal Pay Provisions: Wyoming’s Equal Pay provisions are robust, emphasizing the prohibition of wage discrimination based on gender. Employers are required to maintain equitable compensation for all employees irrespective of gender, promoting fairness and equality in the workplace.
  • Break Entitlements: Wyoming’s labor regulations ensure that employees receive adequate breaks during their work shifts. Workers are entitled to a 10-minute paid rest break for every four hours of work, providing essential intervals for rejuvenation. Additionally, shifts lasting five hours or more require a minimum 30-minute meal break scheduled after the initial two hours of work.
  • Parental Leave: The Parental Leave Act in Wyoming permits eligible employees to take unpaid yet job-protected leave for reasons such as childbirth or adoption, offering necessary support during significant life events.
  • Sick Leave: Wyoming’s laws governing sick leave outline provisions for both paid and unpaid leave, dictating how employees accrue and utilize these benefits. This ensures that employees can attend to their health needs without compromising their job security.
  • Non-Compete Agreements: Wyoming has specific regulations governing non-compete agreements to protect employers’ interests. These agreements are scrutinized closely, and to be legally binding, they must meet stringent legal criteria.
  • Wage Protection Measures: The state has stringent regulations in place to prevent wage theft, encompassing rules dictating how wages are paid, permissible deductions, and the precise timing for wage disbursements, ensuring employees receive their rightful compensation in a timely manner.

Federal Laws

  • The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) establishes extensive rules covering minimum wage, overtime pay, record-keeping, exemptions, and child labor regulations. It applies broadly to various sectors, including private businesses and government entities at federal, state, and local levels, serving as a fundamental framework for overseeing labor practices.
  • The Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) mandates contributions to Social Security and Medicare by both employers and employees. Employers are required to deduct 6.2% for Social Security and 1.45% for Medicare from each employee’s pay, matching these deductions themselves. This results in a combined FICA payroll tax rate of 15.3% for each employee.
  • The Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA) requires employers to contribute to unemployment taxes, providing benefits to eligible employees who lose their jobs. While not directly taken from employee wages, FUTA contributions demand careful attention in every payroll cycle. Typically, a 6% tax is expected on the initial $7,000 paid annually to an employee, though certain industries might have specific exceptions. Effectively managing these federal laws is crucial for ensuring compliant and effective payroll administration.

HR Laws

  • Posting Requirements: Every employer operating in Wyoming is obliged to adhere to specific regulations regarding postings. It is compulsory for businesses employing personnel to visibly display labor law posters within their premises. These posters cover crucial topics such as minimum wage stipulations, health and safety protocols, and other Wyoming labor laws. By complying with this mandate, employers ensure that their workforce is well-informed about their entitlements and responsibilities as per the labor laws in Wyoming.
  • New Hire Reporting: Employers in Wyoming carry a legal obligation to promptly inform the pertinent department within 20 days of hiring, recalling, or rehiring a new staff member. This notification should entail pertinent information about the newly recruited, recalled, or rehired individual, including their complete name, address, social security number, and the commencement date of their employment.

Worker Classifications in Wyoming

Employees and Independent Contractors

In Wyoming, it’s crucial to correctly identify if someone is an employee or an independent contractor. This depends on factors like how much control is given, the freedom the person has in their work, and the type of job they do. Getting this right is really important because misclassifying workers can cause legal and financial issues. Employers in Wyoming must follow state and federal laws, including reporting rules, to ensure they classify workers correctly and comply with employment regulations. To learn more about the rights of salaried and hourly employees, you can read our guides on your rights as a salaried employee in Wyoming, and your rights as an hourly employee in Wyoming.

The ABC Test

In Wyoming, the “ABC Test” is used to figure out if someone is an employee or an independent contractor. This test looks at three main things:

  • Independence: This means the person is free to control how they do their work, both in the contract and in reality.
  • Self-Employment: They present themselves as working for themselves or as their own boss.
  • Substitution: They have the option to ask someone else to do their job if needed.

By checking these three things, Wyoming determines if someone should be classified as an employee or an independent contractor.

Payroll Forms and Relevant Bodies in Wyoming

Wyoming Payroll Forms

WY New Hire Reporting Form: Employers are required to report newly hired employees to the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services using this form within a specified time frame after hiring.

Federal Payroll Forms

  • W-4 Form: This paper helps bosses figure out how much tax they should take from their employees’ paychecks accurately.
  • W-2 Form: Provides a complete summary of how much each individual employee earned in a year.
  • W-3 Form: Summary of all employees’ pay and tax info, packed into one.
  • Form 940: This report tells the IRS about the unemployment taxes a company owes.
  • Form 941:  Used quarterly, it tells the IRS how much employees earned and how much got taken out for FICA taxes from their pay.
  • Form 944: Once a year, it gives detailed info about employees’ pay and FICA tax deductions.
  • 1099 Forms: These papers officially report what employees earned in a year and how much FICA tax was taken out.

Federal and Wyoming Payroll/ Tax Bodies

  • Internal Revenue Service (IRS): The IRS governs and enforces tax rules nationwide. It manages federal income tax withholding from employees’ wages, federal payroll taxes, and the filing of federal tax returns for individuals and employers. Employers in Wyoming, like elsewhere in the U.S., must follow IRS guidelines for withholding federal income tax from employees’ paychecks.
  • Wyoming Department of Workforce Services (DWS): The DWS supervises labor and workforce regulations within the state. It handles aspects like unemployment insurance, worker’s compensation, wage standards, and workplace safety. Employers in Wyoming need to comply with DWS regulations on wage payment, employee classifications, and workplace safety.
  • Wyoming Department of Revenue: The Wyoming Department of Revenue is responsible for state tax matters, this department manages state income tax withholding, sales taxes, and other Wyoming-specific taxes. Employers in Wyoming must follow the Department of Revenue’s guidelines for state tax withholding and reporting.
  • Wyoming Workers’ Compensation Division: The Wyoming Workers’ Compensation Division ensures workplace safety and provides benefits for work-related injuries or illnesses. Employers in Wyoming are required to have worker’s compensation insurance, offering medical benefits and wage replacement for employees injured during work-related activities.
  • Wyoming Department of Employment: The Wyoming Department of Employment focuses on workforce development and labor market information, this department offers services for job seekers and employers, including job training programs and support in finding suitable employment opportunities.

Applicable Taxes in Wyoming

Employer Contributions

In Wyoming, employers are mandated to fulfill specific tax obligations that they need to cover directly instead of deducting them from their employees’ paychecks. One significant responsibility is governed by the State Unemployment Tax Act (SUTA), which diligently finances the pool for unemployment benefits. The tax rate can fluctuate depending on various factors such as the employer’s past history of former employees claiming unemployment benefits and the length of time the business has been operational.

Withheld from Employee’s Wages

  • Wyoming State Income Taxes: Wyoming does not impose state income taxes on individuals or businesses. 
  • Workers’ Compensation in Wyoming: In Wyoming, employers are legally obligated to provide workers’ compensation coverage for their employees. This ensures that if an employee sustains an injury or illness due to their job, they are entitled to receive compensation for medical expenses and disability benefits. In the unfortunate event of a work-related fatality, the benefits from workers’ compensation extend to the dependents of the deceased employee.
  • Social Security (FICA) Withholding: Employers in Wyoming must adhere to the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA). This mandates the deduction of Social Security and Medicare funds from employees’ wages. Employers are also required to match the same amount for Social Security and Medicare. Regarding the additional Medicare tax, employers only deduct the portion due from the employee without a matching obligation themselves.

Additional Relevant Subtractions to Withhold on Behalf of Employees

In Wyoming, beyond the usual state and county taxes, specific deductions from employees’ wages may be necessary, based on particular situations or benefits:

  • When an employee chooses to put money into a retirement plan offered by the company, the chosen amount gets taken out of their paycheck before taxes.
  • For employers offering health insurance, the part of the monthly insurance cost that employees need to pay is usually subtracted from their wages, either weekly or monthly.
  • If an employee owes money to their employer and a court orders the company to take a portion of the paycheck to settle the debt, it must be done promptly.

All these deductions significantly impact the final take-home pay of an employee. Employers must ensure accurate and timely processing to comply with Wyoming’s laws and effectively support their employees.

Key Pay Elements That Impact Payroll in Wyoming

Minimum Wage

In Wyoming, the base wage stands at $7.25 per hour, aligning harmoniously with the federal minimum wage standard. It’s crucial for both employers and employees to remain vigilant regarding any potential modifications to this rate, keeping abreast of updates from the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services. Staying informed ensures compliance with the state’s current minimum wage laws.


Under Wyoming’s regulations, employees are entitled to overtime compensation if they exceed the 40-hour workweek threshold. The overtime rate is fixed at 1.5 times the regular hourly wage. Precise and meticulous tracking of work hours becomes paramount for employers and employees alike. This diligent recording ensures accurate payment for overtime work completed within a given pay period.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

In Wyoming, employers are legally mandated to hold workers’ compensation insurance to safeguard employees in scenarios involving work-related injuries or illnesses. This indispensable insurance package covers wage replacement and vital medical benefits for employees affected by job-related incidents. Employers are duty-bound to provide this coverage, guaranteeing employees the right to claim benefits without any fear of retribution or backlash.

Pay Stub Laws

Wyoming’s legislation dictates that employers furnish employees with comprehensive pay stubs accompanying each payment cycle. These pay stubs must transparently outline gross wages, itemized deductions, net wages, hours logged, details of the pay period, and any accrued overtime earnings. This consistent provision of detailed pay stubs fosters a transparent relationship between employers and employees, ensuring clarity in wage calculations and adherence to state regulations.

Wage Garnishment

In Wyoming, wage garnishment is permissible, allowing a portion of an employee’s earnings to be withheld by employers to settle outstanding debts. Courts may issue garnishment orders specifying the amount to be deducted from an employee’s paycheck. However, stringent state regulations govern the garnishment process, ensuring that employees retain a substantial portion of their hard-earned wages even during debt repayment.

Final Paycheck

Upon the conclusion of employment in Wyoming, employers are obligated by law to issue the final paycheck on or before the next scheduled payday. This concluding payment includes all wages and compensations earned up to the last day of work. If an employee is terminated, the employer must promptly provide the final paycheck to ensure compliance with state employment regulations and fair compensation for services rendered.

Step-by-Step Guide to Payroll in Wyoming

  • Business Registration: To legally employ individuals in Wyoming, you must officially register your business. This involves choosing a business structure like a sole proprietorship, LLC, or corporation and following Wyoming’s specific registration requirements set by the Wyoming Secretary of State. Additionally, obtaining necessary licenses or permits related to your business activities is essential.
  • Obtain Employer Identification Numbers: Securing an Employer Identification Number (EIN) is crucial, as it acts as a business’s equivalent of a Social Security number. The IRS uses this unique identifier to manage tax-related responsibilities for businesses. You can apply for an EIN online through the IRS website. Afterward, registering with the Wyoming Department of Revenue to get a state tax ID number is vital. This ID helps in withholding and forwarding state income taxes from your employees’ wages.
  • Establish a Payroll System: Having an efficient payroll system is vital. Various software solutions are available to automate payroll tasks, handle complex tax calculations, and generate pay stubs. Alternatively, consider engaging a specialized payroll service provider, especially if managing these tasks independently poses challenges.
  • Set Up Employee Records: Collect essential information such as full names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and banking details if using direct deposit for each new hire. Ensuring timely completion of federal W-4 and Wyoming W-4 forms is critical, as they determine tax withholding amounts. It’s crucial to securely store these records due to their sensitive nature.
  • Determine Compensation: Designing a clear compensation structure involves setting hourly rates or salaries, considering bonuses or commissions if applicable, and complying with Wyoming’s minimum wage laws. Additionally, decide on benefits like health insurance, retirement plans, or paid time off and understand their impact on payroll.
  • Establish Payroll Schedule: Deciding on a consistent payroll schedule, whether for salaried or hourly employees is important. Consider industry standards, cash flow, and employee preferences while establishing and sticking to this schedule.
  • Calculate Gross Pay: Accurately calculating gross pay is essential. For hourly employees, it’s calculated by multiplying the hourly rate by hours worked. For salaried employees, divide the yearly salary by the number of pay periods.
  • Deductions and Withholdings: Understanding and implementing deductions, both mandatory like federal and state taxes, Social Security, Medicare, and voluntary such as health insurance premiums, retirement fund contributions, is crucial. Each employee’s deductions should be clear and accurately managed.
  • Include Overtime Provisions: Following Wyoming labor laws, employees working over 40 hours in a week are entitled to overtime pay at 1.5 times the standard hourly rate. Consistently tracking hours is essential to ensure eligible employees receive proper overtime compensation.
  • Process Payroll: Conducting payroll involves distributing funds to employees. Many businesses prefer direct deposit for its convenience, while others still issue checks. Alongside payment, provide a pay stub detailing earnings, deductions, and net pay.
  • Remit Taxes: Besides withholding taxes, sending these funds to the right tax agencies, both federal (IRS) and state (Wyoming Department of Revenue) is mandatory. Regular payments, often monthly or quarterly, are necessary.
  • Recordkeeping: Compliance with Wyoming’s strict regulations requires meticulous record-keeping. Businesses must maintain detailed payroll records covering wage rates, hours worked, pay periods, and various deductions for several years.
  • End-of-Year Procedures: As the fiscal year concludes, businesses must furnish employees with W-2 forms summarizing annual earnings and deductions. Additionally, companies must accurately file specific forms with tax agencies, summarizing their entire year’s payroll activities.
  • Review and Stay Updated: Regularly reviewing labor laws, tax rates, and relevant regulations affecting payroll is crucial. Staying informed about changes, attending pertinent workshops, or consulting HR and financial professionals ensures ongoing compliance and accuracy.

Final Thoughts

Handling payroll in Wyoming may come with some challenges. Employees need to follow the Wyoming labor laws carefully. To make managing payroll easier, take a look at our detailed list of the top 6 applications tailored to streamline payroll responsibilities in the United States. If you’ve already established a payroll system, we’ve provided ten tips to enhance your payroll procedure within the United States.

Important Cautionary Note

When making this guide, we have tried to make it accurate, but we do not give any guarantee that the information provided is correct or up-to-date. We therefore strongly advise you to seek advice from qualified professionals before acting on any information provided in this guide. We do not accept any liability for any damages or risks incurred for the use of this guide.