How to Pandemic Proof Your Payroll: Eligibility and Common Questions

By May 6, 2020 No Comments

With so many rapid changes to every aspect of life and business as a result of the COVID19 pandemic, many companies are unsure how new regulations affect their business. From social distancing requirements and employee absences to accounting practices and small business loans, it’s critical your business stays on top of changing requirements, new legislation and regulation practices.

New legislation, including the Family First Coronavirus Response Act and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) means that rules and regulations are changing daily. As a result, keeping abreast of mandated reporting changes and understanding precisely which COVID19-related expenses to track can be overwhelming.

Moreover, with news of large, seemingly ineligible companies getting significant portions of the first round of SBA and Payroll Protection Program (PPP) funding, the government is clarifying the rules for who can (and who cannot) apply.

Here’s a quick rundown of the latest clarifications and common questions!

New clarifications on PPP funding

With the recent approval of $484 billion in new funding for stimulus programs and disaster relief, the Treasury is sharing clarifications and updates to the oversight process to ensure that the companies who most need the money are able to access it.

The most significant clarifications relate primarily to loan review and eligibility requirements. Here are the biggest takeaways:

  1. The SBA will carefully review loans over $2 million to ensure that companies meet eligibility criteria.
  2. Clarified eligibility requirements state:
    1. Applicants must demonstrate in good faith that the funds are necessary.
    2. Which types of entities may be eligible and which are not.
    3. Every part-time employee counts as a full employee for eligibility purposes.

These are a few of the most important requirements, however, there are several more clarifications. For more details, see the PPP Frequently Asked Questions page.

Three common questions about tracking pandemic-related expenses

You’re far from alone if you have questions about how to track expenses to be compliant with the new regulations. Despite the wide variety of businesses we serve, most client questions about pandemic-related accounting practices fall into one of these categories:

  1. How do I set up my payroll to account for the new rules?
  2. How do I capture the time and reason categories for these benefits?
  3. How do I track expenses related to the Paycheck Protection Program?

Because specifics look a little different for each of our clients, the best way to get answers to these questions is to give us a call. Rest assured that WiJiT has the expertise on staff to help answer your questions and can provide long or short term assistance as firms navigate these uncharted waters.