COVID-19 Statement from Payroll Solutions
We are in unprecedented times in our country and our world with the threat and spread of COVID-19. During these times we are all taking measures in our personal lives and our businesses to balance the threat of the coronavirus, the dramatic turn in our stock market, and the ability to go about our lives and take care of our loved ones. We are all having to make adjustments and changes in order to successfully come out on the other side of all of this safely and quickly. We are all in this together! We take your business and your employees’ payroll processing very seriously. Our number one goal is to pay your employees and taxes on time, accurately, and efficiently so you do not have to worry about it.
As you may know, we are located in a city that has issued a stay-at-home order. As of 5:00 pm on March 27, 2020, all non-essential organizations must cease operations and remain closed until April 16. This will not affect Payroll Solutions. The Department of Homeland Security has listed payroll services as part of the critical infrastructure of this country and our employees are identified as essential personnel.
We are operating under normal business hours and at the present time, pick-ups and deliveries will proceed as scheduled. Our staff is available to service you and your payroll needs. We have plans internally in place and in accordance with the CDC workplace guidelines to keep our employees safe and working. For you this means that your payrolls will be processed without interruption like you are accustomed.
This situation has impacted payroll and your employees like no other crisis in recent history. We feel it is our responsibility to share as much information as possible. Please review the payroll/employee related topics below and understand that information changes by the hour so we will share with you what we know so far.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
On March 18, 2020, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act was signed into law. The key provision to this law is Paid Sick Leave for employers with less than 500 employees. This will take effect on April 1. Please click here for details posted by the US Department of Labor. They have also released a preliminary Q&A page which includes some helpful information.
Employers are required to post notice of Employee Paid Leave Eligibility in the workplace. Please click here for a printable copy of this notice.
We are currently updating our system to install special Earnings Codes to accommodate the FFCRA sick pay tiers. This should be in place by the end of the day on March 31.
Late on March 25, 2020, Senators unanimously approved an unprecedented $2.2 trillion stimulus package which would be provided to individuals, businesses, and states, among others, in response to the coronavirus pandemic. At the time of this email, this package has not yet been signed into law.
The key payroll-related measure of this law defers certain employer payroll tax payments through the end of 2020. Deferred funds would be paid over two years in 2021 and 2022. Deferral would not apply to employers with small business loan debt forgiven under the bill.
Another measure of the law provides an employee retention credit for businesses. The measure would establish a refundable credit against employer payroll taxes for certain employers that are hurt by the coronavirus but retain their employees. The credit would be for 50% of eligible employee wages paid after March 12, 2020, and before Jan. 1, 2021. It would be provided for as much as $10,000 of compensation, including health benefits
At this point, we are not exactly sure how this tax deferral and credit is to take place and how they will appear on quarterly and annual Internal Revenue Service tax forms. We will pass this information on to you as soon as we receive guidance from the IRS.
Employees Filing for Unemployment Benefits
You may be faced with the tough decision to layoff employees due to the COVID-19 crisis. State employment agencies have been directed to not allocate charges to employer accounts for employees receiving benefits. Employers responding to separation requests should note that the layoff was due to COVID-19. Laws may vary so please check with your state for any specific information concerning employee claims. State employment agencies are overwhelmed right now so employees should file claims online wherever possible.
Should you have additional questions please do not hesitate to reach out to your payroll specialist.
Thank you for your time and consideration and we pray for the safety of everyone in our community.