Policy Statement and Reason

For the purpose of this policy, employees include faculty and staff unless otherwise indicated in sections below. All provisions of this policy apply, except that for employees covered by a collective bargaining agreement, this policy does not create any benefits not expressly provided by that collective bargaining agreement and if there are inconsistencies between this policy and the collective bargaining agreement, the terms of the collective bargaining agreement will govern. 

Work arrangement in states other than Massachusetts and California (“out of state”) may be important in developing new academic or business opportunities for the College; however, out of state work arrangements create challenges for Emerson with regard to tax-withholding liabilities, payroll and human resources/benefits administration, reporting obligations, compliance matters, unexpected costs and potential state law violations.  Therefore, out of state work arrangements must be done in accordance with this policy.

Policy Guidelines


This policy may apply to individuals who regularly perform work for the College and who live (reside) outside of Massachusetts and California. This policy does not apply to employees of the College who live out of the state and travel to Massachusetts or California for work or who periodically work outside the state. This policy also does not apply to individuals working internationally. 

Initiating Out of State Work Arrangements

When managers believe an out-of-state work arrangement is warranted, they must speak with their Vice President for approval and then contact their Human Resources Business Partner to initiate the process.  Managers may not make oral or written agreements with individuals for out of state work arrangements without first speaking with their Vice President AND Human Resources.

Payroll Provider Hiring

A third-party payroll provider (“payroll provider”) selected by the College (Finance and Human Resources) and registered to conduct business in the applicable state(s) will hire the designated out-of-state employee. While not an exhaustive list, the payroll provider is responsible for managing such things as:

  • Payroll
  • State taxation laws
  • State unemployment insurance
  • State workers’ compensation   
  • City and states’ local wage and hour regulations and statutes 
  • City and/or states’ HR-related policies (e.g., lawful employment questions, sexual harassment, application forms, etc.)
  • City and/or state leaves (e.g., jury duty, voting, medical and maternity leaves, state paid family and/or disability benefits, etc.) 
  • I-9s 
  • Reporting requirements 
  • Applicable benefits

Individuals may not work for the College until they are retained through the third-party payroll provider and this process is completed.  If it is later discovered that an individual is working out of state without prior approval or without being properly hired through the College’s payroll provider for that state, then the employee may be terminated from employment immediately and, if appropriate, rehired through the payroll provider.

As with all policies, managers are expected to comply with this policy so the College does not run afoul of local labor laws.

Other Information

Related Policies

Not applicable.

Responsible Officer

The Vice President for Administration and Finance is responsible for this policy. 

Key Offices to Contact

Please contact Human Resources for further information regarding this policy and its implementation.

Links to Procedures or Forms

Not applicable.


Not applicable.

The contents of this policy are informational only and are not conditions of employment. This policy does not create any contractual obligations or alter the at-will employment of the College’s at-will employees. Emerson College reserves the right to modify, revoke, suspend, terminate or change any and all policies and procedures at any time, with or without notice, as consistent with state and federal law.