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The Breakdown of Congress' COVID-19 Emergency Relief Acts

March 31, 2020

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The Breakdown of Congress' COVID-19 Emergency Relief Acts

March 31, 2020

 

Congress has recently passed three different laws providing for COVID-19 relief to employers and employees--the Families First Coronavirus Reponse Act, the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act, and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act. Here are the details:

 

Employee benefits are:

  • Two weeks (up to 80 hours) of paid sick leave at the employee’s regular rate of pay where the employee is unable to work because the employee is quarantined (pursuant to Federal, State, or local government order or advice of a health care provider), and/or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and seeking a medical diagnosis; or

  • Two weeks (up to 80 hours) of paid sick leave at two-thirds the employee’s regular rate of pay because the employee is unable to work because of a bona fide need to care for an individual subject to quarantine (pursuant to Federal, State, or local government order or advice of a health care provider), or care for a child (under 18 years of age) whose school or child care provider is closed or unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19, and/or the employee is experiencing a substantially similar condition as specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in consultation with the Secretaries of the Treasury and Labor.

  • Up to an additional 10 weeks of paid expanded family and medical leave at two-thirds the employee’s regular rate of pay where an employee is unable to work due to a bona fide need for leave to care for a child whose school or child care provider is closed or unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19.

Employer benefits for providing emergency payments to employees are:

  • Under the paid sick leave provisions of the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act, there is a refundable tax credit equal to 100% for wages paid by the employer for each calendar quarter. The tax credit is allowed against the employer portion of the tax imposed Social Security rate (6.2%) and the Medicare rate (1.45%). The amount is capped at the maximum of $511 or $200 per day depending on the reason. If the credit exceeds the employer’s total liability of the portion of Social Security and Medicare in any calendar quarter, the excess is refundable to the employer.

  • Under the paid family leave provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, there is a credit equal to 100 percent of the wages paid by an employer under the new Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act each calendar quarter. This tax credit is allowed against the employer portion of the Social Security tax rate of 6.2 percent and the Medicare rate of 1.45 percent. The wage amount is capped for each employee at $200 per day and $10,000 for all calendar quarters. If the credit exceeds the employer’s total liability of the employer portion of Social Security and Medicare in any calendar quarter, the excess credit is refundable to the employer.

Questions? Email us inquiry@njcpaccounting.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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