Nationwide Reduces B-notices and Penalties by More Than a Third


Over the last 80 years, Nationwide has gone from a small auto insurer for Ohio farmers, to one of the largest insurance and financial services companies in the world with more than $157 billion in statutory assets. Now Nationwide is one of the largest insurance and financial services companies in the world, focusing on domestic property and casualty insurance, life insurance and retirement savings, asset management, and strategic investment.

Key Benefits

  • Two-thirds reduction in B-notices
  • No additional staffing needed  even with  growth of business
  • Guaranteed compliance eliminating internal research and audits

Business Challenge

Prior to use of Sovos Compliance’s Taxport Services, Nationwide was using another vendor whose software compliance updates and modifications exposed them to unnecessary risk. The system wasn’t getting updated on time, and enhancements were slow to be integrated. In addition, certain areas of the organization were doing their own processing, which created inefficiencies throughout the company. Between the lack of updates and inconsistency in reporting, Nationwide decided it was time to take full advantage of Sovos Compliance’s services.

“We are pretty careful about being compliant, [and] it went much smoother with Sovos Compliance. It just seems like things are getting more and more efficient—it seems to be really streamlined.”

– Shannan Morris
Senior Tax Analyst Nationwide Financial

Sovos Compliance’s Solution

In 2005, Nationwide signed on for full use of Taxport Services, Sovos Compliance’s information reporting solution. While Nationwide Insurance had been using Sovos Compliance’s services for three years prior, Nationwide Financial made the decision to use Sovos Compliance and focus on core business practices. Nationwide was confident that the offered expertise, efficiency, and ease-of-use of Sovos Compliance’s subscription-based services would yield greater compliance and less risk in information reporting.

On behalf of Nationwide, Sovos Compliance creates transmittals, manages the information returns process, and files the required data to the IRS, SSA, state agencies and US territories. Data from Nationwide’s 17 feeder systems is consolidated and easily accessed by Nationwide anytime, from anywhere with a secure web login. Throughout the entire process, Nationwide receives continuous feedback through performance audit reports. Sovos Compliance also monitors regulatory requirements and updates the system immediately when changes are needed.

The Results

Shannan Morris, Senior Tax Analyst at Nationwide Financial, immediately identified compliance improvements after switching to Sovos Compliance. “When we went with Sovos Compliance, we knew there were compliance developments within the system,” Morris said.

In addition, Nationwide’s business has continued to grow, and they haven’t needed to add additional staff. “We do have much more control over what is being reported, and we are able to balance much more efficiently since using Taxport Services,” Morris said. “I believe being with Sovos Compliance has allowed my department to take on the additional business without adding employees.”

Since switching over to Taxport Services, Nationwide has been able to consolidate all departmental reporting into one reporting entity. The improvements in efficiency and uniformity have been enormous. According to Morris, all Nationwide tax forms look the same and there is increased control over what departments send out. When customers call in, they can get to the correct department more rapidly. Because Nationwide is now in better position to control all filings, they are faster and more responsive to Penalty Notices. If remittals do not balance to 1099s, they have the ability to find what forms are out of balance, or at a minimum, narrow down which administrative area is responsible, and have more control over all areas getting their data to us in a timelier manner. Also, because several departments are now not all trying to do the same task, the company has freed up resources to focus on core competencies.

In 2006, Nationwide’s compliance standards saw a new high. After the initial reporting and processing was complete, B-Notices and Penalty Notices had decreased by more than a third.