A new issue tops this year’s annual IRS Dirty Dozen list of tax scams. The agency’s 2023 list of common tax-related frauds and abuses begins with a warning about the widespread promotion of ineligible claims for the Employee Retention Credit (ERC). The annual notice also lists a variety of other schemes—more than the promised dozen, in fact—that fraudsters often use to con businesses and individual taxpayers. (To see the entire list, visit IRS Wraps Up 2023 Dirty Dozen List) (more…)
After a series of rule changes and expansions to various COVID-19 relief programs, many companies are reconsidering certain federal benefits they had previously ruled out. The employee retention credit (ERC) is a prime example.
The initial intent of the ERC was to make it easier for a business to keep employees on the payroll if it was forced to close or partially suspend operations due to a mandatory government shutdown order or if it experienced significant revenue loss during the pandemic. While the basic structure and purpose of the program remain unchanged, both the eligibility criteria and the size of the potential benefits have changed significantly. (more…)
The Employee Retention Credit (ERC), was enacted in March 2020 as part of the CARES Act and has since been modified twice by Congress to provide greater benefits to employers. Currently, eligible employers may claim a credit equal to 70 percent of the “qualified wages” paid to employees, up to a maximum credit of $7,000 per employee per quarter. If the credit exceeds amounts owed for payroll taxes the excess is fully refundable so it can generate cash for your business. (more…)
President Biden signed the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) into law on March 11, 2021. Unlike previous stimulus legislation, ARPA provides some economic relief to both businesses and individuals but the main purpose was to provide funding for government agencies and social programs. We have compiled a summary of the tax related provisions below. We will keep you updated as we continue to analyze the Act’s impact on our clients. (more…)
In March 2021, the IRS issued Notice 2021-20 containing a series of FAQs to provide guidance for employers claiming the Employee Retention Credit for calendar quarters in 2020. In the guide below, are references to the FAQs addressing specific areas of the 2020 ERC. The Notice addresses only 2020 ERC rules as the IRS plans to release additional guidance for 2021 ERC soon.
The Employee Retention Credit was enacted in March 2020 as part of the CARES Act. It was enhanced and expanded when business relief legislation passed in December 2020 making it a more valuable option to generate cash flow. The amount of the credit was significantly increased, employers are now allowed to claim the credit until June 30, 2021, and the restriction that prevented employers with PPP loans from claiming this credit was repealed retroactively to March 2020. This repeal offers a significant opportunity for PPP loan borrowers to now benefit from this credit.
For employers eligible in 2020, the credit can be claimed on amended payroll tax returns and offset the employer portion of Social Security tax, but any excess credit is fully refundable. For 2021, employers can reduce their current federal payroll tax deposits and even request an advanced refund from the IRS. (more…)
As post-COVID recovery efforts gain momentum, many businesses are taking a fresh look at some federal stimulus and tax relief programs they had not previously considered. One such program, the employee retention credit contained in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, could be especially useful in helping companies bring back furloughed or laid-off employees.
In addition to helping reduce employment tax obligations, it could also help cash-strapped companies of any size improve cash flow during times of reduced revenue. (more…)