The Senate approved a relief package of paid sick leave, unemployment benefits, free coronavirus testing and food and medical aid.
What’s in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act?
- Loans to Keep Small Business Afloat:
- Emergency Paid Sick Leave to Cover COVID-19
- Aid for Employees Who Need to Stay Home With Sick Family Members
- Payroll Credit for Employers Covers Costs of Emergency Paid Sick Leave
- Free COVID-19 Testing
Most employers with 500 employees or less can apply for loans equal to six weeks of payroll up to $1,540 per employee. Fine print: employers who accept the assistance must continue to pay employees for 8 weeks after receiving the loan.
Employers must provide two weeks of emergency paid sick leave at regular pay rate. Furthermore, employees employed for at least 30 days can qualify for pay continuance of at least 2/3 of “regular pay” under FMLA rules for an additional ten weeks. Note employers with 500 employees or more are exempt.
Amendments to the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provide 12 weeks of job-protected leave related to coronavirus. This applies to companies with fewer than 500 employees and requires that the employee has worked for the organization for at least 30 days.
The bill provides for a refundable tax credit equal to 100% of qualified paid sick leave against employer Social Security taxes. For sick leave paid for an employee with respect to coronavirus, the credit is capped at $511 per day. For amounts paid to employees caring for a family member, the credit is capped at $200 per day. Agency guidance regarding how and when the credit will be applied have not been released by the Internal Revenue Service.
The goal is to provide free testing to anyone and everyone who may have been exposed to coronavirus. Note that as of this writing tests are not yet widely available. (Here’s a report on nationwide testing efforts.)
Paycor is Here for You
For expert advice and support during this public health emergency, visit Paycor’s Coronavirus Support Center.
Paycor builds HR software for leaders of medium & small business. For 30 years, we’ve been listening to and partnering with leaders, so we know what they need: HCM technology that saves time, powerful analytics and expert HR advice to help them solve problems and achieve their goals.
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