Pete's Corner

Pete's Corner|Jul 13, 2020

Peter Rowe, President & CEO of Arcwood, clarifies what the “outbreak period” means regarding the CARES Act, PPP loan, and other employer benefits surrounding COVID-19.

This video is for informational purposes only and should not be considered specific advice for your particular circumstance. For more direct questions and to sign up to be included on weekly Town Hall Meetings, email info@arcwood.com.

General News

General News|Jun 23, 2020

Laura Magnuson, Clinical Behavioral Account Manager for Cigna, details mental health before COVID-19 as well as how it has changed since – and what business owners can do to help their employees through these challenging times. (Video 2/3 from the 6.22.2020 town hall meeting)

Do you have any direct questions you need answered? Want to join an upcoming town hall meeting? Feel free to let us know at info@arcwood.com.

Pete's Corner

Pete's Corner|Jun 23, 2020

Arcwood President, Peter Rowe, kicks off the weekly Town Hall meeting with a perspective on the surge of COVID-19 cases in Arizona. (Video 1/3 from the June 22, 2020 Town Hall Meeting)

Have a direct question you need answered? Want to be included in our weekly town hall meetings? Contact us at info@arcwood.com.

Blog

Blog|Jun 12, 2020

Matt Hatfield, CPA, Lohman Company, LLC provides his latest update on the PPP Flexibility Act of 2020 for businesses / employers.

Have a specific question? Interested in joining our next town hall meeting? Contact us at info@arcwood.com.

Pete's Corner

Pete's Corner|Jun 11, 2020

Arcwood CEO Peter Rowe provides an update on most recent legislative action taken by the State of Arizona and the Federal Government for businesses in response to COVID-19 shutdowns.

Have a specific question? Interested in joining our next town hall meeting? Contact us at info@arcwood.com.

News

News|May 04, 2020

Matt Hatfield, CPA, rejoins us to discuss this week’s news related to the CARES Act / Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), tax credits and other financial matters in response to COVID-19 lockdowns.

Have a specific question for us? Shoot us an email at info@arcwood.com.

News

News|May 04, 2020

As states, including Arizona, begin to reopen after COVID-19 shutdowns, what’s the process for reopening? What are the new safety and sanitation regulations? Dennis Hall and Diana Durham present guidance for small business owners and human resource managers.

Rules & Guidance for Getting Back to Work

Have a specific question for us? Shoot us an email at info@arcwood.com.

News

News|Apr 02, 2020

We recently hosted a webinar regarding the newly passed CARES Act. As a resource to our clients and community, we’ve made the webinar public, as well as the questions and answers we’ve received on this subject.

Arcwood webinar on the CARES Act from March 30, 2020

We will continue to do our best to pass on and disseminate general information to our community.  If you have a general question related to the CARES Act you’d like us to answer on this post, please email us at info@arcwood.com.

If you feel your question is asking for a specific opinion for your company or organization, please email Peter Rowe or Diana Durham directly and we can determine if it may be necessary to have a specific engagement for research and an opinion.

Questions Asked & Answered

What is the proof an employer can reasonably request regarding an employee’s election to stay home to take care of their kids? Is proof required?

Per the DOL, if an employer intends to claim the tax credit for either the Paid Sick Leave or Paid FML leave, then they need to retain appropriate documentation for their records. Examples of notifications include: Dr’s note showing you or someone you are caring for has been tested or has COVID-19, notice that has been posted on a government, school, or daycare website, published in a newspaper or an email from an employee or official of the school or child care provider.

Can the employee continue to accrue leave while using Emergency Leave?

Just as an employee would not accrue sick or vacation time while out on any other leave, they would not be entitled to accrue leave during Emergency Leave since the employee isn’t actively working.

If we need to cut salaries to help cashflow, will this affect the eligibility CARES SBA Loan? Even if it’s for the month of April, 1 month?

It doesn’t seem to impact eligibility, just the forgiveness under the Paycheck Protection Program. Please review the PPP Information Sheet.

Do we submit the payroll amount for the 12 month period prior to the loan date?

We are hearing from our banker relationships to be ready with this data, possible the 941’s. We are also understanding the banks are assisting existing customers first, they will have the best information for you.

Can an employer require employees to telework 40 hours week, but reduce their pay? Any differences between Salary Exempt employees and Hourly employees?

An employer can reduce the wages of an employee, however, there are a couple of things to consider. For hourly employees, wages can’t be reduced below federal/state minimum wage (whichever is higher). Hourly employees should continue to clock in/out as they would if they were working in the office. For salaried employees, wages can’t be reduced below FLSA salary threshold ($35,568 annually). Salaried employees must be paid their entire weekly wage regardless of the number of hours they work.

Are the health care workers and health care offices exempt from this Emergency FMLA thing?

Per the DOL guidelines, a health care provider is anyone employed at a doctor’s office, hospital, health care center, clinic, post-secondary educational institution offer health care instruction, medical school, local health department or agency, nursing facility, retirement facility, nursing home. home health care provider, any facility that performs lab or medical testing, pharmacy, or any similar institution, employer, or entity.

How do you defer social security and other payroll taxes?

Eligible Employers will report their total qualified leave wages and the related credits for each quarter on their federal employment tax returns, usually Form 941, Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return. Form 941 is used to report income and social security and Medicare taxes withheld by the employer from employee wages, as well as the employer’s portion of social security and Medicare tax.

Please review the included link for the IRS Tax Credits for Required Leave.

Who provides the posters that we have to put up?

The Department of Labor publishes these posters in both English and Spanish.

For employees that can work remotely – is the only way that they could qualify for the Emergency Paid Sick Leave/Family Leave is if they are sick themselves?

Per the DOL guidelines – An employee is unable to work and eligible for leave if the employer has work for you and one of the COVID-19 qualifying reasons prevents you from being able to perform that work, either under normal circumstances at your normal worksite or by means of telework.

If an employer allows for work outside of normal business hours, then you are able to work and leave is not necessary unless a COVID-19 reason prevents you from working that schedule.

Employees may be eligible for intermittent Paid Family Leave if an employer allows it and an employee is unable to telework a normal schedule of hours due to your child being home from school or without childcare.

Can employees defer their DCFSA contributions if their child’s care facility is closed?

Yes, this is a qualifying event as the billable rate has been changed to 0. Similar to summer recess.

If we did not furlough employees OR continue to pay them to stay home, or if a seasonal employee gets sick from the virus – Does the employer have to continue to pay the seasonal employee X under FMLA after their normal end of season employment given the following?

If an employee is working, whether at your office or teleworking, then they are eligible for paid sick leave and/or paid family leave if they have a qualifying COVID-19 reason. If an employee (this includes full-time, part-time, and temporary) is working, then they are eligible starting 4/1 for paid sick leave. If they have been an employee for 30 days or more, then they are also eligible for paid family leave.

Follow-up question on seasonal employees. If an employer furloughs or lays off an employee on or after 4/1, then the employee is not eligible for either paid leave effective the date the employee is no longer working.

Follow-up question if a seasonal employee is normally laid off of work on April 30th. If an employee is on a paid leave when an employer closes the worksite, the employer must pay the paid leave through the date of closure. Once the worksite is closed, an employee is no longer eligible for paid leave since they are no longer working.

Additional Resources

  1. USC = US Chamber of Commerce.
    1. Coronavirus Small Business Guide
    2. Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act: What Small Businesses Need to Know
    3. 10 Commonly Asked Coronavirus Small Business Loan Questions
  2. SBA = Small Business Association
    1. Disaster Loan Applications
  3. DOL = Department of Labor
    1. COVID-19 and the American Workplace
    2. COVID-19 and the Family and Medical Leave Act Questions and Answers
    3. Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Questions and Answers
  4. IRS = Internal Revenue Service
    1. COVID-19-Related Tax Credits for Required Paid Leave Provided by Small and Midsize Businesses FAQs
    2. HIGH DEDUCTIBLE HEALTH PLANS AND EXPENSES RELATED TO COVID-19
    3. Relief for Taxpayers Affected by Ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic
  5. Tres = US Treasury
    1. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Information Sheet.
  6. CMS = Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
  7. EEOC = Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
    1. PANDEMIC PREPAREDNESS IN THE WORKPLACE AND THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT
  8. WHO = World Health Organization
    1. Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Pandemic
  9. CDC = Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 
    1. Coronavirus (COVID-19)
  10. Arizona
    1. Governor Doug Ducey
    2. AZDHS

News

News|Mar 16, 2020

The outbreak of COVID-19 is impacting nearly every facet of daily life and business in unprecedented ways. So how should employers proceed with such uncertainty? Diana Durham, President of Arcwood HR, shares her perspective on next steps for employers, and some potential legislative action being considered from Washington.

General News