City of Pittsburgh Fights UPMC's Claim of Having Zero Employees

The city of Pittsburgh has responded to UPMC's claims that it has no employees — an argument that could greatly complicate the city's challenge to the health system's tax exemption.

In an amended complaint filed Monday, attorneys representing the city said UPMC purports to have up to tens of thousands of employees on its website, in its annual report and in some tax filings, according to a Pittsburgh-Post Gazette report.

In one of the first hearings in the city's case challenging UPMC's tax exemption, UPMC attorneys argued last week the system employs people on a subsidiary-by-subsidiary basis, with each of its total 37 entities filing separate forms for tax purposes. UPMC itself does not have employees, attorneys argued.

An organization can't pay employment taxes unless they have employees, meaning that if UPMC's claim is true, the city would have to challenge each subsidiary's tax exemption.

UPMC spokesperson Paul Wood declined to specify which of UPMC's subsidiaries pay payroll taxes, as some do, and how many of those operate within the city of Pittsburgh, according to the report.

The city has responded to this claim, pointing to UPMC's 2012 annual report and website, which tout the hospital system as one of the state's largest employers. Attorneys also pointed to another lawsuit in which UPMC claimed to "extend offers of employment," according to the report.

"UPMC's public statements about its status as an employer are not mere shorthand for some other kind of relationship, but are reflective of a de facto employer-employee relationship between UPMC and every individual who works for the system," the city's filing said.

UPMC has 14 days to file a response.

More Articles on UPMC:

Pittsburgh v. UPMC: Legal Arguments Behind the Tax-Exempt Challenge UPMC
Highmark Reach Tentative Agreement to End 4-Year Antitrust Fight
UPMC Claims it Has No Employees to Keep Tax-Exempt Status

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars