Client Alert: New developments for businesses/employees on loans, paid leave, tax credits, and more

There have been so many recent developments and it’s not slowing down anytime soon. To that end, we wanted to provide you with a quick synopsis of some of these developments so you’re aware of them and can use them to your advantage.

  • The CARES Act (the federal stimulus package) provides, among other things, loans of up to $10,000,000 to businesses with 500 employees or less. Some or all of the loan amount can be completely forgiven so long as it’s used to cover certain business expenses (payroll, rent, mortgage interest, and debt/utility payments). Businesses/sole proprietors can start applying tomorrow. Independent contractors/self-employed individuals can start applying on April 10th. There’s a lot more to be said about this Act and we’ll provide additional information as more guidance is released. Here’s a link to one of the applications.
  • Tomorrow is the deadline for businesses to apply for the NYC Employee Retention Grant Program. Eligible businesses (located in NYC, at least a 25% decrease in revenue, 1-4 employees, in operation at least 6 months, plus other requirements) can receive a grant covering up to 40% of their payroll for two months (capped at $27,000).
  • The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division released 124 pages of regulations regarding “Paid Leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act”. Of note, “stay-at-home” orders qualify as a basis for leave and being “particularly vulnerable to COVID-19” could also trigger eligibility for emergency paid sick leave. The full guidance can be found here.
  • The IRS released guidelines concerning what documentation employers need in order to receive the FFCRA tax credit for wages paid under sick leave and family medical leave. If you have not set up a FFCRA documentation policy, please follow up with legal counsel, HR support, or a tax professional to get something in place. The IRS’s dedicated COVID-19 website with the guidance on tax credits can found here.
  • The EEOC released (technically re-released) guidance on how to comply with the disability anti-discrimination statutes during this pandemic. “What You Should Know” page can be found here; Technical Assistance Document can be found here.
  • New Jersey expands paid sick leave law to accommodate for COVID-19 closures. Text of this law can be found here.

Stay safe.

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