State and Local Tax relief laws for COVID-19

State and Local Tax relief laws for COVID-19

State and Local Tax relief laws for COVID-19

The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading rapidly with a huge toll on the lives of common people and the global economy as well. In the US, the number of people being affected by the COVID-19 is on an increase and has reached around 4 lakhs now. The number of people who have died due to COVID-19 in the US is approximately around 11,000. Similarly, many people have even lost their livelihoods due to the closing or the downfall of several businesses.

However, Tax relief laws the Federal Government has been extremely considerate towards the sufferings of the common people and has taken several initiatives for providing some relief to them. The income tax payment and return filing deadline for the taxes due on 15th April 2020 has been postponed to 15th July 2020 by the IRS. Also, several new laws have been implemented by the Federal Government for the support of individuals, small and medium scale businesses even. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES), Families First Coronavirus Response Act, Stimulus Package, etc. are some of the major initiatives taken by the Government for providing support and assistance to people. 

Tax relief laws by State Government  

In the US, the tax rules and laws associated with the Federal Government and the State Government are different from each other. In this distressful period, the State Government of different states of the country has announced various changes and new rules related to the tax laws.

Let us talk about some of the major tax relief laws imposed by the State Government in the different states to deal with the economic disruption caused by COVID-19.

Alabama

  • In Alabama, the Revenue Department has announced on provisions for tax relief to small businesses that would not be able to pay their Sales tax for February, March, and April. Those small retail businesses whose monthly sales in the previous year have been $62500 or less on average can have the liberty to file their sales tax return for February, March, and April without paying the State Sales tax. There will be a waiver of late tax payment penalties for these small retail businesses through 1st June 2020.
  • The deadline for motor vehicle registration and vehicle property tax payment for March 2020 has been extended through 15th April 2020. Moreover, tax relief would be available for State lodgings tax account holders who are unable to make their payment for February-April 2020.
  • The due date for payment and filing returns for 2019 Income tax and 2020 estimated Income tax which were due on 15th April 2020 has been extended to 15th July 2020.

California

  • The Income Tax deadline for return filing, payment for 2019 and 2020 estimated tax payments Quarter 1 and Quarter 2 has been extended to 15th July 2020. This is also applicable for 2020 LLC taxes, fees, and 2020 non-wage withholding payments. 
  • The Californian Employment Development Department (EDD) has declared that the employers in the State who have been impacted by COVID-19 can request a delay of up to 60 days in filing their State payroll reports or in the deposit of their payroll taxes without the payment of any penalty. The employers must provide a written request for this extension within 60 days of the original tax filing/payment due date.
  • Moreover, there has been an announcement on the deferral of business taxes for supporting small businesses that have been affected by the COVIS-19.

Connecticut

  • The Department of Revenue Services in Connecticut has extended the deadlines for filing the annual tax returns due on or after 15th March 2020 and before 1st June 2020 to 15th June 2020.
  •  Also, the tax payments which are associated with these tax returns have been extended to the due date available in June.
  • The personal income tax return filing deadline has been extended to 15th July 2020 and this extension is also applicable for estimated tax payments of 2020 Quarter 1 and Quarter 2.

Columbia

  • For income tax returns, the deadline for tax payment and return filing which was due on 15th April 2020 has been extended to 15th July 2020.
  • In the District of Columbia, penalties/interest will be waived for the failure of sales tax payment for a period that ends on 29th February 2020 or 31st March 2020 if all the taxes are paid completely on or before 20th July 2020. This waiver does not apply to hotels or motels which can defer property tax under another emergency legislation. 
  • This legislation states that hotels/motels can avail penalties waiver for the delay in payment of the property tax’s first installment of 2020 if the installment is paid by 20th June 2020.

Texas

  • In Texas, the Comptroller has declared that the sales tax collected in March 2020 would be remitted and would be available for emergency health care and other emergency operations for the people.
  • The Texan Comptroller has also insisted on the businesses in the State to make use of short term payment agreements for meeting the deadline of March 2020. 

Massachusetts

  • The Department of Revenue in Massachusetts has implemented an emergency regulation amendment. According to this amendment, the sales and use tax return filing and payment which are due for the period of 20th March 2020 to 31st May 2020 will remain suspended. These tax return filing and tax payments would be now due for 20th June 2020. 
  • Marijuana retailers, marketplace facilitators or motorcycle vendors are not included within this amendment. Any penalties or interest would be waived but the accumulation of statutory interest will continue.

Virginia

  • In Virginia, the Department of Taxation has announced that all the income tax payments which are due from 1st April 2020 to 1st June 2020 can be paid at the Department anytime on or before 1st June 2020. If all the payments are received by 1st June 2020, then the Department would waive all penalties for late payment otherwise penalties would start accumulating from the original payment due date. 
  • However, interest would also keep accruing from the original due date of payment. Some of the taxes which are eligible for this extension and waiver are individual, fiduciary and corporate income taxes and any estimated income tax payments in this period.  The State provides an automatic filing deadline extension for all the taxpayers for six months.  Also, the Department of Taxation would consider requests for sales tax dealers who would request an extension in the sales tax payment and return filing which was due on 20th March 2020 and would extend it till 20th April 2020.

Montana

  • The Montana Revenue Department would assess the situation of taxpayers on a case-by-case basis and might permit the deferral of tax payments for up to one month at an instance. 
  • The taxpayers must contact the Tax Collection Bureau by email, phone or mail at least one week before the actual due date of payment for making a deferral request.
  • The 2020 estimated tax payments for the first quarter have been extended to 15th July 2020 and the second quarter payment is also due on 15th July 2020.

Conclusion

Hence, along with the Federal Government, these are some of the tax relief laws/rules implemented by the different states. Taxpayers can communicate with their respective State tax agencies for complete details on the amendments made in their respective tax laws for COVID-19. These rules and amendments in State tax laws would act as a support for the distressed individual taxpayers or businesses in coping up with the economic disruptions.

References

https://tax.thomsonreuters.com/news/tax-relief-offered-by-states-and-localities-in-response-to-covid-19/?utm_campaign=T_CPE_NSL_9017597_covid19news_20200406_PR_EM1&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Eloqua&site_id=82769734&cid=9017596&chl=em&sfdccampaignid=7014Q000002SW4xQAG&elqTrackId=8432E59EA486AE4E4F693C86C8DF092E&elq=1fca5b09cc9e4a48adaa952eec158059&elqaid=22686&elqat=1&elqCampaignId=16486

https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/pages/tax/articles/covid-19-state-and-local-tax-due-date-relief-developments.html  

 

What are the tax relief initiatives taken by the IRS for self-employed taxpayers during COVID-19?

What are the tax relief initiatives taken by the IRS for self-employed taxpayers during COVID-19?

What are the tax relief initiatives taken by the IRS

for self-employed taxpayers during COVID-19?

The US Government has recently made changes into the tax filing timelines as an effort to provide some relief to the taxpayers who are already suffering due to the outbreak of pandemic COVID-19. These changes were jointly announced by the US treasury and the IRS and are applicable for individual taxpayers, businesses and even self-employed taxpayers.

The US Government has extended the income tax filing deadline to 15th July 2020. The IRS would be processing the refund process for all the taxpayers within the normal time frame which is around 21 days for those filing the tax returns by electronic medium or by direct deposit.

Tax-filing extensions for self-employed taxpayers

Tax-filing extensions for self-employed taxpayers

The tax filing timeline has been extended for 90 days without the payment of any penalty and this change is also applicable on the estimated tax payment for the year 2020 which was also due on 15th April 2020.

For self-employed taxpayers, if there is a filing of the quarterly estimated tax then first-quarter filing must be due by 15th April 2020 previously. The timeline for the filing of the first quarter estimated tax has now been extended to 15th July 2020. However, for the other quarters, the filing dates remain unchanged such as the tax filing deadlines remain 15th June 2020, 15th September 2020 and 15th January 2021 for the second, third and fourth quarters. 

The Families First Coronavirus Act

On 18th March 2020, the US President signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Act which is the initial coronavirus relief bill. This Act provides several benefits to self-employed taxpayers and small-business owners.

1.Comparable tax credits for self-employed individuals

 

 

a.If a self-employed individual is affected by the coronavirus, then by this Act he is eligible to claim a refundable credit against the bill of his federal income tax including the self-employment tax hit. In case the credit is more than the bill amount then the Government will issue a payment for the excess to the taxpayer.

b.This refundable credit will equal to the sum of 100% of the self-employed individual’s sick leave equivalent and 67% of the sick leave equivalent amount needed for taking care of a family member who is sick or for taking care of the individual’s child due to the closing of the child’s school or child care center.

c.The sick leave equivalent amount would equal to lesser among the below-mentioned

  • average daily self-employment income of the individual or  
  • $511 each day for up to 10 days for self –care due to the COVID-19  or $200 each day up to 10 days for the care of a sick family member or child after the latter’s school has been closed due to COVID-19.

d.Moreover, self-employed individuals can claim a family-leave credit due to COVID-19 up to 50 days. The amount of this credit would be equal to the number of the qualified family day leaves multiplied with the lesser amongst $200 or the individual’s average daily self-employment income. The maximum total family-leave credit permissible is $10,000 which is equal to 50 days multiplied with $200 per day.

e.These credits which can be availed by the self-employed individuals are allowed only for the days during a particular period which is specified by the Treasury up to 31st December 2020. The beginning date is most likely to be within 15 days of the date this Act became a law i.e. 18th March 2020.

f.The self-employed individuals must maintain proper documentation needed to claim these credits.       

2.Small Business  Owners Tax Credits

  1. A small business owner is eligible to collect a tax credit which is equal to 100% of the qualified emergency sick-leave and family-leave payments made by him under the Families first coronavirus Act.
  2. This credit would only cover those leave payments which are made during the period specified by the Secretary of the Treasury up to 31st December 2020. 
  3. This credit can also be increased for providing cover to a portion of the small business owner’s qualified health-plan expenses which can be allocated for emergency sick-leaves and family-leave wages.
  4. However, this credit would not be available for those employers who are already receiving the pre-existing credit for paid family leave and medical leave under IRS Code Section 45S.

 

Conclusion

Hence, with the outbreak of the COVID-19 the self-employed individuals and small business owners have also suffered from certain economic and financial disruptions. The attempt of the US Government to bring certain relief to these taxpayers by changing tax laws and by passing the Family First Coronavirus Act is sure to be successful.

References

https://blog.turbotax.intuit.com/self-employed/what-the-coronavirus-relief-means-for-self-employed-taxpayers-46585/

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/what-the-family-first-coronavirus-relief-bill-means-for-small-business-owners-and-self-employed-people-2020-03-21

   

How business entities would obtain benefits from the suspension of tax compliance programs by the IRS?

How business entities would obtain benefits from the suspension of tax compliance programs by the IRS?

How business entities would obtain benefits from

the suspension of tax compliance programs by the IRS?

Tax Compliance programs by the IRS has been taking a series of steps related to tax legislation as an effort to alleviate the stress common people are facing due to the outbreak of COVID-19. The rapidly spreading COVID-19 has led to the reduction in sales, slowdown of businesses, people being laid off from their jobs and huge economic adversities. In such a chaotic situation, the IRS’s initiatives on the suspension of tax compliance would act as a boon for the taxpayers, especially for the business entities. 

How business entities would obtain benefits from the suspension of tax compliance programs by the IRS.One such major initiative taken by the IRS is the implementation of the “People First Initiative” which would help in providing relaxation to those business entities who are facing uncertainties related to their taxes.

People First Initiative

The People First Initiative includes the postponement of certain payments that are associated with the installment agreements and offers in compromise.According to IRS, these measures included under the People First Initiative would start from 1st April 2020 onwards and would continue up to July 2020.The major changes which have been included in the People First Initiative are the postponement of the payments which are related to the Installment Agreements, the Offers in compromise, Audits, and other enforcement activities.

Installment Agreements

  • The IRS has announced that it has suspended the existing installment agreements that were due in between 1st April and 15th July 2020. Those taxpayers who are not able to comply with the terms of the installment agreement can suspend their payments due during this period. The IRS would also not consider any installment agreement of this period as a defaulter. However, the interest would be accruing on the unpaid balances. 
  • Also, the IRS has made provisions by which taxpayers either individuals or business entities who would not be able to make payment for their federal taxes can take the help of the monthly payment agreement by the IRS.

 

Offers in Compromise (OIC)

  1. The taxpayers who have pending OIC can provide additional information for support till 15th July 2020. Without the consent from taxpayers, IRS would not be closing any OIC which is pending before 15th July 2020.
  2. Taxpayers who have accepted OICs can suspend their payments until 15th July 2020. However, interest would be levied on the accrued balances which are unpaid.

 

3.Those taxpayers who are delinquent in the filing of their tax return for the year 2018, the IRS would not issue an OIC as a defaulter for them.

 4.Any delinquent returns of the tax year 2018 must be filed by the taxpayers either before or on 15th July 2020.

Automated Liens

and

Levies

According to the regulations of the IRS, no new automatic liens and levies would be carried out till 15th July 2020.

 

Activities related

to field collection

  • All activities related to liens, levies and any seizures associated with a personal residence that are initiated by the field revenue officers will be suspended till 15th July 2020. 
  • The field revenue officers will, however, continue to perform seizures and similar activities for high-income non-filers whenever needed.

 

Passport Certifications to the State Government and Private Debt Collection

  1. For the seriously delinquent taxpayers, the IRS would provide Passport certifications to the State Government. This procedure has been suspended currently till 15th July 2020.
  2. Moreover, new delinquent accounts will also not be forwarded by the IRS to the other private collection agencies for working on them until 15th July 2020.

Field, Office and other correspondence audits

  1. Any in-person field, office or correspondence audits will not be carried on till 15th July 2020. There can be audits or examinations remotely by the examiners of the IRS. Taxpayers should also co-operate with the IRS and provide all information that is requested for faster tax processing. 
  2. There might be some situations in which the taxpayers might be interested in the examination or audit. If the audit or examination is beneficial for the parties and the required IRS personnel are available then the audits/examination can start.

 

 

Refund claims

The IRS would continue to work on the processing of the refund claims without making any in-person contact.

Earned Income Tax Credit and

Wage Verification Reviews

  • The taxpayers have time till 15th July 2020 for responding to the IRS that whether they qualify for the EITC or their income has to be verified. 
  • Through 15th July 2020, taxpayers will not be denied these credits if they have a failure in providing the requested information.

 

Independent Office of appeals

The Office of appeals would be continuing to work on their cases. There might be a conference which would be held by telephone or through videoconferencing. For all the cases of the Independent Office of appeals, the taxpayers should promptly respond to any request made for information.

Statute of limitations

There would no disruption in the protection of the statute limitations by the IRS. The taxpayers are encouraged to co-operate with the IRS in extending those statutes whose expirations may be jeopardized. Otherwise, notes of deficiency would be issued by the IRS to protect the interests of the Government in the preservation of these statutes.

Conclusion

Hence, with these several changes being implemented by the IRS in the tax regulation the plight of the individual taxpayers and business entities would reduce by a considerable amount. With these tax relaxations and suspensions, business entities are sure to cope up with the losses that have been incurred due to the outbreak of COVID-19.  

References

https://tax.thomsonreuters.com/news/irs-suspends-certain-compliance-programs-due-to-covid-19/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyphillipserb/2020/03/25/irs-will-ease-tax-payment-guidelines–limit-collections-activities-during-covid-19-crisis/#5a8cdb9c4dca

https://www.forbes.com/sites/robertwood/2020/03/25/irs-eases-installments-due-slows-audits-sweeping-relief-puts-people-first/#2eb525c93855

https://www.accountingtoday.com/news/irs-suspends-key-tax-compliance-and-enforcement-programs-to-adjust-covid-19-effort

  

 

Does the new tax deadline by IRS mean a new deadline for your IRA contribution?

Does the new tax deadline by IRS mean a new deadline for your IRA contribution?

Does the new tax deadline by IRS mean a new deadline

for your IRA contribution?

The IRS Tax Deadline, The federal tax filing deadline in the US has been extended up to 15th July 2020 to combat the effects of economic hazards caused due to the outbreak of COVID-19. This extension would also mean that you can make contributions to the IRA up to 15th July 2020.

IRA and how it works?

In the US, IRA or Individual Retirement Account helps you in saving money for retirement in a tax-advantaged way. The money which you would invest in this account can grow in a tax-deferred manner until you are ready to retire. Usually, traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs are opened by individuals whereas SEP IRAs and SIMPLE IRAs are meant for small business owners and self-employed individuals. 

All the IRAs offer tax benefits which can be considered as a reward for saving. With the help of an IRA, you can even invest in stocks, bonds, and other assets. By making contributions to a traditional IRA, your tax bill would be reduced for the year in which you are contributing and you would not have owed income tax on the money until you withdraw it on your retirement. However, in a Roth IRA investments can grow in a tax-free manner but the contributions are not eligible for tax deductions. The withdrawal of the money can be done on retirement in a tax-free manner by investing in a Roth IRA as well.

The major benefits of an IRA can be listed below.

  1. Saving tool for retirement
  2. Cutting of tax bill
  3. The wider option of investments available
  4. Savior in any unexpected situation

By the IRA withdrawal rules, you can withdraw your money anytime from the IRA but by paying a penalty of 10% and a tax bill if your money has been withdrawn before the age of 59-1/2 years unless there is an exception.

Extension in IRA

contribution deadline

In case you have not been able to save much for your retirement in the last year, you can do that now as the IRA contribution deadline has also been extended. The IRS has extended this for 90 days without charging any penalties or interest for this.

You can contribute a maximum of $6000 towards the IRA. If you are above the age of 50 years then you can contribute an additional $1000 as a catch-up contribution. For making further contributions to your IRA you must contact the brokerage where your IRA has been held so that any additional funds that are added by you into the IRA are correctly filed.

Extension in the deadline for tax

owed on the income from IRA 

If you have taken an early distribution from your IRA or any other work-based retirement plan then you will owe an additional tax. This will be a 10% additional tax on the amount that can be included in 

gross income obtained from the early distribution. The deadline for reporting and payment of this additional tax has also got an extension up to 15th July 2020.

The major cause behind this is that this additional 10% tax is calculated and even paid at the same time as the income tax owed on the gross income. In case you are filing before 15th July 2020, then this extra 10% tax would be calculated at the time of filing itself.

Remove excessive

deferrals

In case, excessive deferrals have been made by you to your work-based retirement plans then those deferrals must be removed from the plan. This removal must be done by 15th April 2020 as those distributions need to be removed from the income and there has been no extension in this deadline. 

CARES Act: Relief for small businesses and individuals during COVID-19

CARES Act: Relief for small businesses and individuals during COVID-19

CARES Act: Relief for small businesses and individuals during COVID-19

The outbreak of the pandemic COVID-19 has created a threatening impact on the lives and livelihoods of people across the world. In the US, more than 2 lakhs people have been affected by this dreadful disease and there have been around 6K deaths due to this pandemic. COVID-19 has not only affected the lives of common people but also the economy of the nation. There has been a remarkable slowdown in businesses with the common masses being laid off from their jobs.CARES Act: Relief for small businesses and individuals during COVID-19 

In such adverse situations, the Federal Government has brought certain changes in the tax rules. There has been the implementation of some new laws for reducing the stress that the common people are facing.

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act

On 27th March 2020, the CARES Act was passed in the House of Representatives by a voice vote. Then the bill was signed into law by the US President. It is the third round of support from the Federal Government for the general public concerning the outbreak of the COVID-19. In the previous weeks, the Federal Government had already passed the Families First Coronavirus Act (FFCRA) and sanctioned an amount of $8.3 billion for the public health initiatives.

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and Emergency Grants – The SBA stands for Small Business Administration which is a federal program that helps small businesses with financial assistance. Loans and EIDL are offered by SBA when there is a critical situation. A business must have been operational on 31st January 2020 for being eligible for the loans by SBA. According to the provisions of the CARES Act, the SBA would provide an advance of up to $10,000 to small businesses that have been harmed in COVID-19. This loan would be provided within 3 days of applying. There is no provision for the return of the advance by the businesses and can be used for paying debts, keeping employees on the payroll, paying sick leave, rent or other obligations. 

PPP Forgivable Loan For a small business to avail of the PPP forgivable loan, it must have been in business on 15th February 2020. Small businesses, sole proprietorships with a workforce of 500 employees or less, self-employed individuals and even independent contractors can apply for this loan. The amount of this loan can be up to 2.5 times the business’s average monthly payroll costs plus an extra 25%. It is necessary that at least 75% of the loan amount must be utilized for payroll costs and the remaining 25% can be used for business rent, debts, and other expenses.

Local Government Grants Small business grants are being offered by some Local Governments for relief to businesses.

Paid Leave creditsSmall and midsize businesses would provide paid leaves to their employees who are sick due to COVID-19 or need to stay back at home for taking of a family member who has been affected by COVID-19. The employers would be provided with tax credits for the paid leaves that are being provided to their employees.

Payroll tax credits If a business has been impacted by the economic shutdown which took place from mid-March 2020 to December 2020, then the exact payroll tax need not be paid and if the organization/business has already made the payment then they will get back the money. This is known as retention credit.

Also, employers can delay payment of that part of the employee payroll tax which is related to social security. This can be paid over the upcoming two years i.e. by the end of 2021 and 2022.  

Other provisionsSome other provisions are also associated with the business relief such as relaxation of the limit to the carrying back of net operating losses up to 5 years, avail of additional business expenses under the CARES Act, etc.

Activities to be done

To avail the business reliefs under the CARES Act, small businesses must ensure that their accounting records are well-maintained. The Profit and Loss Statement must be updated as it would highlight the income, payroll and other expenses.  Proper estimation must be done which would assess the financial ability of the business to survive the economic shutdown, money that must be needed by the business and the loan re-payment.  

 

Personal Relief

Stimulus check – The Federal Government would provide the taxpayers with a direct deposit of up to $1200 in case of a single person, $2400 for married couples and an additional $500 for each child. This stimulus checks would be available only for those individuals who have an income of up to $75000 and $150,000 for married couples.

Unemployment benefitsThose taxpayers who are already receiving unemployment benefits would receive an additional $600 every week until 31st July 2020. There has been an extension of 13 weeks for receipt of unemployment benefits than the period allowed by State unemployment programs. Employees would be beneficial by Short-time compensation and work-share programs where their working hours would be reduced rather than being laid off.  

Delayed tax filing and paymentThe IRS have postponed the tax filing and payment date to 15th July 2020 rather than 15th April 2020. Also, for self-employed taxpayers, the date for the estimated tax payment has been moved to 15th July 2020.

Federal Student loansThe interest on the Student loan which is due on the US Department of Education has been waived temporarily.

Retirement plansEarly retirement distribution done in 2020 up to an amount of $100,000 are not subject to any penalty if the taxpayer or his family are diagnosed with COVID-19 or have been impacted financially due to COVID-19.

Mortgage reliefThe Federal Government has also announced suspensions in mortgage payments during the economic shutdown of COVID-19.

Charitable donationsTaxpayers can deduct up to $300 in the cash contributions that have been made for qualified charitable donations. For 2020, individuals can deduct more than 50% of their AGI (Adjusted Gross Income) for charitable organizations.  

 Activities to be done

The individual taxpayers should ensure that if their banking information or current address is not present with the IRS and if not then the post office must have the address. Also, if an individual has not filed his tax returns for 2019 then he must consult with his tax professional about the feasibility and impacts of filing the tax returns now.

Conclusion

Hence, these new provisions implemented according to the CARES Act prove that it is quite a positive step to help individuals and businesses to overcome the hardships or the economic ruins which have been caused by the COVID-19.

References

https://www.simpleprofit.com/coronavirus

https://www.forbes.com/sites/leonlabrecque/2020/03/29/the-cares-act-has-passed-here-are-the-highlights/#3e3a5cc168cd

https://taxfoundation.org/cares-act-senate-coronavirus-bill-economic-relief-plan/

Tax relief measures for small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic

Tax relief measures for small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic

Tax relief measures for small businesses

during the coronavirus pandemic

The entire nation has been affected by the dreadful coronavirus. The rapid spread of the COVID-19 across the country has affected the economy on a very massive scale. The business operation across the country has come to a standstill especially in the case of small businesses that are tax relief measures. Social distancing and quarantining have led to a decrease in the number of customers coming to purchasing impacting sales. Numbers of employees are also not going on work as everyone is forced to stay inside for preventing further spread of the disease. In such adverse situations where there are huge economic disruptions, the Government is working towards passing legislation that would help in providing financial relief to the businesses and taxpayers.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act

On March 13th, 2020, President Trump had declared a situation of national emergency along with open access of States and Territories to $50 billion for the shared fight against the disease. Again on 18th March 2020, the Senate had passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. This bill was signed by the President on that day which included the below-mentioned highlighted points.

1.Federally mandated paid leave benefits and paid sick leave are to be provided to the eligible employees. The paid sick leave must be provided to the impacted employees for 14 days at the regular rate of pay i.e. max $511 per day. Moreover, employers should also provide the benefits of paid leave to the eligible employees for three months.

2.The availability of tax credits for both employers and self-employed taxpayers have been mandated to reduce the burden of employers arising due to the paid leave

 

Extension in tax payment and tax return filing deadline

The US Treasury Department and the IRS had announced that the deadlines for filing tax returns and tax payments that are due on 15th April 2020 are extended up to 15th July 2020. This extension is applicable for making filing tax returns for 2019, Income Tax payments for 2019 and the estimated income tax payments for 2020.

If there is a tax refund due, then the Income tax returns must be filed as soon as possible so that the refund can be obtained immediately and put to use in this time of crisis.

 

Low-interest loans guaranteed by the SBA

 

When there is a tremendous drop in sales, it becomes quite difficult to manage business expenses, employee wages, bills, etc. In such a situation, a business loan can be taken but then it will have a very high rate of interest. So, to ease down these worries the President has announced that the Government would provide more funds in the federal disaster loans which are backed by the Small Business Administration (SBA).  The loans provided by the SBA are known as the Economic Injury Disaster Loan.These loans would help in providing relief for the qualifying businesses in the below-mentioned forms.

 

  1. Loans at low-interest rates i.e. 3.75% for businesses and 2.75% for non-profit organizations.
  2. Repayment plans are long term in nature i.e. up to a maximum period of 30 years.

If a small business is facing financial issues and is not able to afford bills related to the payroll expenses, fixed debts and accounts payable then it can apply for an “Economic Injury Disaster Loan”.

 

Moreover, the federal and state financial regulators have been encouraging the financial institutions to work in a co-operative manner with those borrowers who belong to the affected communities.

Cash Payment by the Government

Another measure taken by the Government to provide relief to the small businesses is by providing the Stimulus package. Under this package, stimulus checks would be provided to US adults. On 27th March 2020, President Trump signed the CARES Act into law.

By this Act, cash payments would be provided to adult taxpayers up to $1200 for a single person and up to $2400 for couples. If there is a child, then the amount of the stimulus cheque will include an additional $500.

Those individuals who have earned $75,000 in the adjusted gross income (AGI) on the Income-tax returns of 2018 will be receiving a lower amount. Also, those individuals who do not have a federal tax liability will receive $600 under this proposal.       

 

Deferment of

any amount

The IRS has also announced any amount can be deferred related to the Federal tax.  In the Notice 2020-18, the IRS had stated that “there is no limitation on the amount of payment that may be postponed”. Previously, there was a dollar limit on the tax that can be deferred but later on 21st March 2020 this limit has been withdrawn.

This deferment or the postponement of tax payment has only been announced for the federal taxes and is not applicable for any other tax like excise taxes and payroll taxes.

Conclusion

Hence, the various legislations and implementations of new tax laws would be helpful for small business owners to avoid sleepless nights due to tax payments in times of low sales and disrupted business.

References

https://ssfllp.com/coronavirus-covid-19-tax-relief-for-small-businesses/

https://www.patriotsoftware.com/blog/payroll/small-business-relief-coronavirus-pandemic/