Important Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information and Resources
While the news concerning COVID-19 continues to develop, we would like to say that the health and safety of our team members, families, clients, and communities is our number one priority. We will be utilizing this COVID-19 Resource Center as a means of keeping our clients and community informed during these challenging times.
Our Whittlesey team remains fully-operational. We will continue to provide the high level of client service that our clients and community deserve and trust. We have the technology in place to continue to provide you the high level of client service you have grown accustomed to as long as needed. Our team members are equipped to work remotely. Our technology systems can be easily and securely accessed regardless of where our team members work or live.
We encourage you to send documents electronically to help protect you from any risk. You can send such files by visiting the Client Portal. If you need assistance uploading your documents to the portal, please email Whittleseyportal@wadvising.com. If you prefer to send information to us via FedEx or mail, please inform your Whittlesey advisor.
We remain committed to continuing the high quality and timeliness of service you deserve and expect. We will be in communication regarding any modifications to this ever-changing issue. If you have any questions about how this may affect you or your business, feel free to reach out to your Whittlesey advisor.
Additional guidance surrounding the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) Interim Rule Revised June 23, 2020
On June 22, the SBA and Treasury released additional guidance surrounding the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) Interim Rule. The new guidance provided clarification regarding loan forgiveness filing dates, owner-employee payroll costs, and Safe Harbor reductions.
New EZ and Revised Full Forgiveness Applications for the Paycheck Protection Program
The Treasury Department issued revised PPP Loan Forgiveness Forms yesterday, PPP Loan Forgiveness Calculation Form and PPP Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508EZ. We are anticipating additional guidance later this week.
PPP Loan Forgiveness Form 3508EZ Instructions for Borrowers
Loan Forgiveness Application Revised June 24, 2020
Modifications to the PPP Program
Last night the Senate approved a bipartisan bill to loosen Payroll Protection Program (PPP) requirements. The bill now waits for the President's approval. The new requirements make the lending terms more favorable to businesses that have been shut down or are not operating at full capacity. These changes will also make it easier for borrowers to attain full forgiveness.
Learn more: Click here for the full article
Paycheck Protection Loan Applications are Available
Application Process Begins April 3, 2020
Beginning April 3, 2020, SBA approved financial institutions will begin accepting applications from small businesses and specific nonprofit organizations with under 500 employees. Starting April 10, 2020, independent contractors and self-employed individuals can apply. We encourage you to apply as soon as possible due to the funding cap.
Download the application from the Treasury Department’s website
You will need the following information about your business or organization:
- TIN number
- Average monthly payroll based on:
- Employee wages (excluding costs over $100,000 on an annualized basis for each employee) for 2019, including paid time off, sick pay, and family medical pay. You can obtain this information from your payroll providers.
- Withholding for state and local taxes on employee compensation.
- Documentation regarding amounts paid for employee health insurance for 2019.
- Documentation regarding the amounts paid for retirement plan funding for 2019.
- Number of employees in your business or organization.
- Specific uses for loan money.
- List of owners who hold at least 20% ownership.
After you complete your application, we recommend that you contact your current financial institution. If your financial institution is not an approved SBA lender, we will help you find one. All loans have the same terms regardless of the institution.
We are here to guide you through the entire process, starting with assisting with loan calculations, helping you establish relationships with approved lending institutions, understanding employment issues, and maximizing your loan proceeds and forgiveness.
Contact your Whittlesey Advisor with questions and assistance applying for the program. We encourage you to download your application today. Do not delay!
CARES Act Forgivable Paycheck Protection Loans to Small Businesses
Last night, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or the “CARES Act.” The House of Representatives is expected to pass this Act tomorrow and the President is expected to sign it upon the completion of the House vote. This $2 trillion relief package will quickly inject money into the economy to help stabilize businesses and families affected by the virus outbreak.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act
On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the Act) to address mandated sick leave and mandated paid leave for those infected with or directly affected by COVID-19. The Act will take effect no later than 15 days after enactment and will remain in place until the end of 2020.
To offset wages paid under this law, employers will receive a tax credit, reducing their payroll tax cost. The Act does not prohibit employers from paying benefits in excess of these required amounts (see summaries below); it just mandates these minimum amounts of sick and paid leave to employees in certain circumstances.
Learn more: Full article here
Tax Filing Updates
The IRS Announces That Income Tax Payments Due April 15 Can Be Deferred to July 15, Regardless Of The Amount
The IRS and the U.S. Treasury Department have been making a series of announcements to provide tax relief in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. After previously announcing that taxpayers could defer making federal income tax payments up to certain limits for three months, the IRS has now announced that taxpayers can postpone payments without penalties or interest “regardless of the amount.”
Coronavirus (COVID-19): Tax Relief for Small Businesses
Businesses across the country are being affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19). Fortunately, Congress recently passed a law that provides at least some relief. In a separate development, the IRS has issued guidance allowing taxpayers to defer any amount of federal income tax payments due on April 15, 2020, until July 15, 2020, without penalties or interest.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced a 90-day tax payment extension to July 15, 2020, for many individuals and corporations. Previously, if a taxpayer owed tax to the IRS, payment would have been due on April 15, 2020. But now, tax payments up to $1 million for individuals and up to $10 million for corporations (not part of a consolidated tax return filing) can be deferred for an additional 90 days.
The IRS indicates that this payment deferral is available whether a taxpayer files by April 15 or if they extend their tax return, and that the IRS’ issuance of tax refunds will not be affected by this extension of time for taxpayers to pay. The $1 million deferral for individuals applies whether an individual files as single or as married filing jointly.
The IRS has also confirmed that this tax payment deferral applies to 1st quarter 2020 estimated tax payments that would also have normally been due on April 15.
Our tax professionals continue to temporarily work remotely to serve our clients for the April 15 deadline. We will also update you as we receive additional information from the IRS.
Learn more: IRS Notice 2020-17
State of Connecticut and Massachusetts Updates
State Tax Impacts of COVID-19
Much of the focus in the tax world has been on the federal aspects of the CARES act and the Families First Act for the past few months.
Most states have followed suit with extended deadlines for filing and payment of most tax returns/payment obligations. This article gives high-level insight into the northeastern states for possible discussions with clients to identify the state implications of the pandemic.
Below you will find the updated due dates of common returns for CT, MA, ME, NY, NJ, NH, RI, and VT.
Small Businesses and Nonprofits Organizations in CT and MA Eligible for SBA Loans up to $2 Million
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) up to $2 million to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). These loans are to be used for working capital to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses, which could have been met, before the impact of the virus.
Tax Filing Deadline Moved to July 15
The Connecticut Department of Revenue Services (DRS) has moved the filing and payment deadline for personal income tax returns out 90 days, to July 15, 2020. This due date change also applies to Connecticut estimated income tax payments for the first and second quarters for 2020 (which would normally have been due on April 15 and June 15, respectively). This extension for Connecticut’s personal income tax return filing and payment aligns with the U.S. Treasury’s announcement, where it indicated federal income tax filings and payments would be extended until July 15, 2020. For more information please visit: www.ctcpas.org
Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Robert DeLeo announced an agreement to extend the 2019 state individual income tax filing and payment deadline from April 15 to July 15 due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. This income tax relief is automatic and taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms to qualify.
Contact us with any questions you have about filing your return.
Guidance for Credit Unions Impacted by COVID-19
On March 22, 2020, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and the State Banking Regulators (hereafter, the agencies) issued guidance to credit unions on working with members related to loans impacted by COVID-19.
Fact sheet: expansion of the accelerated and advance payments program for providers and suppliers during COVID-19 emergency
To view the fact sheet: Click here
Sustainability to Survivability: 5 Nonprofit Finance Must-Do’s in the Time of COVID: Click here
Remote Work Resources
COVID-19 Cybersecurity Remote Work Warning
As everyone is busy with COVID-19 precautions, we want to make sure you don’t lose focus when it comes to cybersecurity. Knowing the world is occupied with the pandemic, hackers have taken full advantage of the situation and are using it as a targeting vector. This can come in the form of phishing emails, vishing (the term for a fraudulent phone call), or text messages. It is more important than ever that we all remain ‘cyber vigilant.’
5 Tips to Create a Successful ‘Work from Home’ Lifestyle
Working from home has become much more common in the past decade, but I doubt any of us expected this to be the new normal for 2020. If you’re working remotely for the first time on a full-time basis, you might be looking for some tips to adjust to your “work from home” lifestyle.
It can be easy to fall off of a schedule, keep your PJs on, and camp out on the couch, but doing so may start to affect your productivity as well as your mental well-being. These tips will not only help you maintain structure, focus, and productivity, but also support your mental well-being while working at home.
Additional Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus
Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council: https://www.westernmassedc.com/about-us/covid-19-resources/
Disclaimer: Our content, comments, and answers to questions should not be construed as specific advice for your particular situation. The statutes and rules related to the SBA lending provisions and other programs are complex and you should consult with your financial and tax advisors for guidance regarding the application of the law to your particular facts and circumstances.
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