There is a federal program that we here at Salt Lake City Department of Economic Development (SLC DED) would like employers in the city to be aware of. It is known as the Federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) and its objective is to help targeted groups that face significant barriers to employment move from dependence to independence to sufficiency and contributing taxpayers.


In order to achieve this lofty and worthwhile goal, WOTC reduces employer’s federal tax liability as incentive to hire from targeted groups. The program is for new hires who meet a target group criteria and begin work after December 31, 2014 and before January 1, 2020. Employers wishing to participate must receive certification of WOTC eligibility and meet a minimum employment period. The federal tax liability reduction maxes out at $2,400 for most target groups, however, there are target groups that are eligible to receive higher credits. These groups include summer youth employees from Empowerment Zones, disabled veterans within a year of leaving service, veteran hire after at least six months unemployment, long-term family assistance recipient, and disabled veteran unemployed for six months.


As you can see, this program has the potential to change lives for the better and can offer significant benefits to Salt Lake City employers. Employers who wish to take part in the program must apply for and receive certification from the Utah Department of Workforce Services WOTC Unit and verify that their new hire is a member of a WOTC target group before they can claim the WOTC on their federal tax return.

To view information on target groups please visit: and for more information on the certification process please visit: