Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA):          

Employee Paid Leave

2021 FFCRA Update (Program Extended Through Sept., 2021)

  • No longer required, but covered employers may still voluntarily provide this reimbursable paid leave through March 31, 2021 September 30, 2021.
  • Employees' maximum allowable paid days does not start over on Jan.1. The maximum allowable days has been reset and extended for certain leaves.
  • Maximum daily payments remain the same.  
  • It now covers leave to allow employees time to get vaccinated as well as sick time related to those vaccinations if the employee suffers injury, disability or sickness due to the vaccination

April 21, 2021

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury Department announced today further details of tax credits available under the American Rescue Plan to help small businesses, including providing paid leave for employees receiving COVID-19 vaccinations.

The additional details, provided in a fact sheet released today, spell out some basic facts about the employers eligible for the tax credits. It also provides information on how these employers may claim the credit for leave paid to employees related to COVID-19 vaccinations

 IRS Fact Sheet on FFCRA Credits

2020 W-2 Statements provided by PayXperts will include a FFCRA notice for those employees who received FFCRA paid leave, as required by law.

DOL Q&A - FFCRA  (Program extended through Sep. 30, 2021)

The FFCRA was enacted back in April, 2020.  It was an expansion of the FMLA which requires certain employers, generally with 50 or more employees, to follow the federal laws relating to family leave. The FFCRA however, covers all employers with fewer than 500 employees.

 

When it was announced, there was an exemption for businesses with less than 50 employees if providing the leave to employees would "jeopardize the viability of the business as a going concern".  Many small businesses were taking advantage of that loophole and not following the FFCRA procedures.  Also, most employers had applied for PPP and EIDL loans and already had a federal program covering their payroll.

 

The FFCRA has since been tweaked - as all government programs seem to have been.  There is still an exemption for businesses with fewer than 50 employees.  But it appears only to apply if giving leave to employees who are caring for children whose schools or day cares have closed due to COVID would harm the business.  From what I understand, it no longer exempts any company from providing leave to employees who are out sick, or quarantined due to COVID.

 

Please see the flyer below.  This must be posted where employees can see it.  It is a little confusing, but in a nutshell:

    1.  Employees who are sick or quarantined (& unable to telework) - pay them their average salary up to maximum $511/day, and $5,110 total.  This covers part-time employees as well. Each employee qualifies for up to 80 total hours (or their part-time equivalent).

    2.  Employees who are caring for a sick or quarantined family member, or a child whose school or day care has closed - pay them 2/3 their average salary up to a max. $200/day, and $2,000 total.  This also covers part-time employees.  However, for employees with children home due to closings, there is a 10-week extension available.

 

I know this all sounds confusing. The good news is, you will be reimbursed for all of these wages.  You will also be reimbursed for the employer's portion of FICA tax and daily health insurance costs during the leave.  The reimbursements will come by way of a credit against your 941 tax payments.  If that is not enough to cover it, you can submit form 7200 for a refund, or we can request the refund when submitting your quarterly forms 941.

 

Here is a great Q&A for questions you may have: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-questions?mc_cid=cb05bacd65&mc_eid=[UNIQID]

 

With the cases of COVID on the rise, it's important to let employees recover at home to avoid a widespread outbreak.  This credit can help you afford to do that.

FFCRA Employee Time Off Worksheet
FFCRA - worksheet 2021.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [63.0 KB]

2021 Federal

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Friday Jan. 1
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