Approved: October 4, 2022
Date Established: October 1, 2022
Responsible Office: Department of Finance and Administration
Date Last Revised: n/a
Responsible Administrator: Vice President for Finance and Administration
Mount Holyoke College (MHC) recognizes that some work lends toward remote work and in some cases, remote staff may reside outside of the state of Massachusetts. While employment at MHC occurs primarily in South Hadley and Boston, Massachusetts, the College’s reach also extends to locations out-of-state. This policy establishes basic requirements and an understanding for authorizing staff to work outside of the state of Massachusetts.
Scope / Responsibilities
Department heads must seek approval in conjunction with divisional leaders for an employee to work out of state, or permission may be granted by the Vice President for Finance and Administration in consultation with Human Resources as a condition of employment established by the College. Existing employees should work closely with their supervisor to ensure that working out of state will not interfere with employee performance, the quality of work expected or college operations. The requesting employee and the supervisor should carefully consider the implications outlined below in their decision to work out of state.
State taxes, employment tax, and other provisions (i.e. paid leave entitlements and minimum wage laws), vary from state to state. The Human Resources Department is primarily responsible for compliance with these various rules. Therefore, departments must notify Human Resources as soon as possible but not less than 30 days before the start date of any prospective arrangements involving MHC employees working outside the state of Massachusetts.
The existence of MHC employees working in any state outside of Massachusetts may trigger additional compliance requirements besides those relating to employment. Therefore, the hiring or reassignment of employees to positions that will result in the individual working outside Massachusetts must be supported by an important College business purpose and not be merely an accommodation to the employee.
- Applicable Laws
Employees who are working outside the state of Massachusetts and have MHC as their employer are subject to all employment-related laws of the state(s) in which they work.
- Background Checks
Employees working outside the state of Massachusetts shall undergo a background check consistent with the existing policy.
- Workers’ Compensation
Remote employees are covered by workers’ compensation for job-related injuries that occur in the course and scope of employment. Remote employees must report any work-related illness or injury to their supervisor immediately. For instructions on how to file a claim please contact, contact Human Resources – Benefits at firstname.lastname@example.org. The claim filing process will be specific to the state in which the injury occurred.
- Paid Family & Medical Leave (PFML)
Employees who work outside of Massachusetts are covered by the Massachusetts State Paid Family & Medical Leave program; however the College shall observe the paid family leave laws and programs of the state where the remote worker resides.
- Unemployment Insurance
Remote employees who work outside of Massachusetts are not covered by Massachusetts unemployment insurance unless there is a reciprocal coverage arrangement in place with that state. Employees who work in a state outside of Massachusetts may be covered by an unemployment insurance program in the state in which they work.
- Out-of-state Tax Withholding
Both the employee’s work location and the location of the employee’s residence may trigger state and/or locality withholding, depending on state law. If the employee meets the requirements for state taxation and has accurately submitted their work location to Human Resources – Payroll, the out-of-state payroll provider shall withhold the applicable taxes for that state and/or locality.
- Compensation and Exemption from Overtime
Compensation for remote employees follows the same compensation policies and guidelines as established by MHC policy, regardless of the employee’s work location. This includes applying Massachusetts minimum wage except where a specific state or local law exceeds. Exemption from overtime follows the rules of the Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards, regardless of the remote employee’s work location.
- Travel Between Locations
The costs of voluntary travel to and from an MHC worksite for remote workers are the responsibility of the individual employee. Employees who work remotely regularly and in general do not maintain an office nor desk at a Mount Holyoke location, shall be paid or reimbursed for approved college business travel consistent with existing travel policies.
- Holidays for Out-of-State Locations
Most employees are eligible for up to 11 paid holidays and three “floating holidays” per fiscal year. The College’s holiday schedule shall apply to benefits-eligible employees working outside of Massachusetts. In the event a state-recognized holiday does not align with the college’s holiday schedule, the department head may facilitate schedule adjustments so that an out-of- state employee maintains the same number of holidays as those working within Massachusetts.
- Vacation and Other Time Off
Employees working outside Massachusetts shall receive the same amount of vacation and other paid time off as other Mount Holyoke College employees in the same payroll category working in Massachusetts. If the law of the state or locality requires more paid time off for a specific purpose than is provided by Mount Holyoke College’s policies, the department head should request an exception to the paid time off provision to comply with local laws. Any additional time off is generally unpaid unless payment is required under applicable law.
- Employee Benefits
MHC’s employee benefits generally apply to employees working in other states unless specifically stated otherwise.
- Other Exceptions
Requests for any other exceptions to policies, including exceptions to pay policies or practices, follow the process described in Section M.
- Process for Exceptions to Policies
If a department head believes that an exception to a Mount Holyoke employment policy is warranted for one or more employees working outside Massachusetts, the following steps must be followed:
- Departmental discussion: The employee’s department head discusses the reasons for the exception with the responsible Vice President.
- Written request: The Vice President submits a written request to the Associate Vice President for Human Resources explaining the need for the exception.
- Written approval: Exceptions must be approved in writing by the Associate Vice President for Human Resources and by the Vice President for Finance and Administration.
- Communication to employees: The department head is responsible for communicating any approved or disapproved exceptions in policy to their employees.
- Subsequent changes: If a department head later wishes to modify or end any exception, prior approval must be obtained in the same manner as for the initial exception, and the department head must communicate any changes.
These definitions apply to terms as they are used in this policy.
The execution of all of an employees’ job responsibilities at an alternate work site that is not a Mount Holyoke location, such as their home. A remote work arrangement may exist on a regular basis, intermittently, or for a defined period.
- Guidelines for Flexible and Adaptive Work Arrangements
- Flexible and Adaptive Work Guidance for Managers
- Out-of-State Employee Approval form