Resources for employers and employees dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic
Please click on the links below to view the most up-to-date resources available on COVID-19 and it’s impact on your business. Bene-Care will continue to update this portion of the website as more details become available from our state and federal government.
PPP Loan Forgiveness
Since being established as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act in March 2020, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has been the subject of additional stimulus bills, legal guidance and interim final rules. In the latest development, Congress passed the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020, which is a bill that provides borrowers with greater flexibility in spending PPP funds without compromising forgiveness eligibility. President Donald Trump signed the bill into law on Friday, June 5, 2020.
What is included in the bill?
The bill, which passed with a bipartisan vote, makes the following amendments to the PPP to provide relief to borrowers:
- Loan repayment terms—The bill extends the minimum loan term for unforgiven PPP loans from two years to five years.
- Payroll costs vs. nonpayroll costs— For forgiveness eligibility, the bill reduces the portion of PPP funds that must be spent on payroll costs from 75% to 60%, and raises the nonpayroll cost limitation from 25% to 40%.
- Covered period extension—The bill extends the covered period during which borrowers must spend the PPP funds to be eligible for forgiveness from eight weeks to 24 weeks from the date of origination of the loan.
- Payroll tax deferment—The bill permits borrowers to defer payroll taxes without being penalized while still remaining eligible for loan forgiveness.
- Extension of rehiring safe harbor—The bill extends the rehiring safe harbor by six months to provide borrowers with additional time to restore payroll levels or rehire employees without facing a reduction in the amount of forgiveness for which they are eligible. The original date was June 30, 2020, and the new date is Dec. 31, 2020.
In addition to the provisions above, the bill provides loan forgiveness eligibility exemptions for borrowers that are not able to rehire an employee or a replacement. There are also exemptions for loan forgiveness eligibility for borrowers that are not able to return to the same level of business due to complying with COVID-19-related orders or circumstances.
Borrowers should review the bill carefully and speak to their lender should they have any questions. In addition, borrowers should direct any questions regarding their PPP loan to their lender.
We will continue to monitor any additional developments regarding the PPP and deliver updates as necessary. For more information about the PPP, contact Bene-Care Agency, LLC.
Click on the links below to download the following items:
President Biden Offers Additional Financial Support to Small Businesses (9.2021)
SBA Simplifies PPP Loan Forgiveness With New Direct Portal (8.2021)
PPP FAQs, March 2021
PPP Forgiveness- What you should know
PPP Loan Forgiveness Application
New York State Resources
NYS Paid Family Leave
Please click the link above to view information on how NYS Paid Family Leave benefits have been modified to support New York employees and their children who are quarantined, and those caring for a family member impacted by the virus.
Claim forms available to download:
NYS PFL Claim form if you are quarantined/isolated due to COVID-19
NYS PFL Claim form if your dependent child is quarantined/isolated due to COVID-19
NYS PFL Claim form to care for a family member with a serious health condition. This form has not changed.
NYS Unemployment – Resources for Employees
NYS is waiving the 7-Day waiting period for Unemployment Insurance benefits for people who are out of work due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) closures or quarantines. Please click on the link above for more information on applying for unemployment benefits. You may also call the numbers listed below for assistance.
- Rochester Unemployment Office #585-266-7760
- Buffalo Unemployment Office #716-856-5627
- Department of Labor #888-899-8810
NYS Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
Click this link to view covered scenarios that may make you eligible for NY Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. The state has also compiled this helpful PUA FAQ document to assist with common questions regarding Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and unemployment in general during COVID-19.
What NY Workers Should Know About the CARES Act
The federal CARES Act was signed into law March 27, 2020. The Act provides enhanced Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) for New Yorkers. Click the link to learn more
NYS Unemployment – Resources for Employers
Employers looking for resources on NY Unemployment Insurance benefits should click on the link above. There is currently no additional employer guidance regarding Coronavirus.
New York State Resources for Small Business Association (SBA) Loans
NY has compiled information for small businesses on the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program. Click the link above for details.
New York State of Health
Individuals can enroll through the NYSOH until the public health emergency has ended. Currently, the public health emergency will extend through April 16, 2022, and may be extended further. Enrollment must be completed by the 15th of the month for coverage effective the 1st of the following month. For example, enrollment must be completed by March 15th for coverage effective April 1st.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
As part of emergency legislation signed into law by President Trump on March 18, 2020, two laws were enacted that provide workers with paid
leave for reasons related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; The Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act. The FFCRA is effective April 1, 2020 – December 31, 2020.
- DOL Regulations Regarding Families First Coronavirus Response Act, Added 4.9.2020
- Compliance Bulletin: New Coronavirus Relief Laws Require Paid Employee Leave
- DOL Guidance on FFCRA Employer Leave Requirements
- DOL Clarifies Exemptions to Coronavirus Paid Leave Laws
- Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) summary document; includes details on how employers can pay for the leave
- FFCRA Employee Rights Labor Poster; this poster should be posted in plain view near your labor law posters. If not possible during this time, please email a copy to your staff members to meet the distribution requirements.
- Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act – Request Form
- Federal Law Alert: DOL Clarifies FFCRA Leave Rules , Added 9.17.2020
- DOL Issues Two New Q&As About FFCRA, Added 1.7.2021
FFCRA Tax Credits for Small and Midsize Businesses
This Compliance Bulletin provides the FAQs issued by the IRS on how the FFCRA tax credits apply to businesses with fewer than 500 employees and self-employed individuals.
$2 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Bill Signed Into Law – CARES Act
On Friday March 27, 2020, President Trump signed a $2 trillion economic stimulus package designed to provide financial assistance to small businesses, Americans and their families. For details, please read Understanding the Historic $2 Trillion Stimulus Package
CARES Act Expands Health Coverage Rules
On March 27, 2020, the U.S. Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) to provide $2.2 trillion in federal funding to address the COVID-19 crisis. Building on the FFCRA, the CARES Act makes a variety of changes affecting health plans.
CARES Act – Small Business Loan Overview
The CARES Act provides businesses suffering under the debilitating effects of the pandemic with unprecedented access to emergency loans. This document will serve as an overview of the loan programs available.
CARES Act Employee Retention Tax Credits for Businesses Impacted by Coronavirus
This Compliance Bulletin contains the IRS’ new release regarding the employer retention tax credit under the CARES Act.
CDC Guidance for Employers
Please click the link above for interim guidance from the CDC for employers and businesses. Guidance includes tips to plan, prepare and respond to the impacts of COVID-19.
OSHA Standards and Directives Concerning COVID-19
Please click the link above to view OSHA standards and directives (instructions for compliance officers) and other related information that may apply to worker exposure to novel Coronavirus, COVID-19.
EEOC Guidance Regarding Coronavirus
What employers should know about the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and COVID-19.
COVID Relief Bill – Understanding the 900B Stimulus Package (Added 1.7.2021)
On December 27th, President Donald Trump signed into law an emergency stimulus package designed to deliver approximately $900 billion in COVID-19-related aid. Notably, this bill provides funding for unemployment benefits, small businesses, direct economic payments to individuals, vaccine distribution and rental assistance.
IRS Form 7200, Advance Payment of Employer Credits Due to COVID-19
Form 7200 is a new form used by eligible employers to request advance payment of the employee retention credit and the FFCRA credits that an employer claims on employment tax returns such as Form 941, Employers Quarterly Federal Tax Return.
Understanding the $1.9 Trillion American Rescue Plan (added 3.11.21)
President Biden signs the American Rescue Plan into law effective March 11, 2021. Highlights of the bill include extended
unemployment benefits, direct checks to individuals and more.
New Relief Bill Contains Employment-related Provisions (added 3.11.21)
Along with providing financial relief for individuals, state and local governments, schools and businesses, the American Rescue relief bill contains measures of special interest to employers including ACA, DCAP and COBRA updates.
Human Resources Guidance for Employers
2022 Covid-19 Guidelines (1.2022)
COVID Leave Chart 2022 (1.2022)
Coronavirus in the Workplace – Compliance Considerations for Employers
HR Insights: Coronaviruses and the Workplace
New York State Emergency Paid Sick Leave Flow-Chart
Employee Compensation and Benefits During Closures and Furloughs
Cyber Liability – Coronavirus and Remote Work Cyber Risks
CDC Guide, Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19
Coronavirus Economic Impact Payments – What You Need to Know
Sample Employee Letter, COVID-19 Overview and Policies
Sample Furlough Letter, COVID-19
Sample Letter for Temporary Layoff
Sample Notice of Layoff Letter
Sample Travel Letter for Essential Employees
Stay Home From Work When Sick Poster
Social Distancing: Step Away for Safety Poster
Keep Surfaces Clean to Kill COVID-19 Poster
Feeling Ill? COVID, Flu, Allergies, Cold Flowchart Poster
Mandatory FFCRA Employee Rights Labor Poster
Mandatory NYS Poster, COVID-19 Sick Leave for Employees
Mandatory NYS Employer Poster, COVID-19 Sick Leave
For additional assistance, or recommendations specific to your workforce, please feel free to reach out to your Bene-Care representative. Many of our team members are working from home, but we are still available to assist you during this time.