As we hit the end of 2020, there was a lot of confusion as to what COVID-19 relief was going to look like in the new year. This was mostly due to delays in passing new relief legislation. Luckily, in the last week of December, the powers that be passed a new COVID-19 Economic Relief Bill. As one might assume, there’s a lot involved in this giant bill. You probably do not want to read through all 5,593 pages of the entire bill (but feel free to use that link if you do want to do that). So, in this blog, will just go over a few of the highlights of the bill as well as some other important dates and info that you should know for 2021.
SBA EIDL Loan Application Deadline Extended to December 31, 2021
On December 30, 2020, the Small Business Administration (SBA) announced that the deadline to apply for the next round of the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) for the COVID-19 public health emergency would be extended until December 31, 2021. However, it is important to note that these loans will only be granted for as long as the funding holds out. While the SBA has approved $197 billion in low-interest loans since the start of the pandemic, many businesses did not apply in time to receive them before funds ran out for the first round. Even with the deadline being extended until the end of the year, your practice should submit your applications as soon as possible because it is likely that funds will run out again before all of them are processed.
Second Draw PPP Loan Application Deadline Extended to March 31, 2021
The SBA has also announced a second round of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, officially referred to as the “Second Draw PPP Loans.” The deadline for application is March 31, 2021. However, when it comes to how soon you can apply for these loans, that is up to your specific lender. If you need to apply, you should contact your lender as soon as possible to find out when they will begin taking applications. We highly recommend applying as soon as possible, once this occurs.
FFCRA Paid Leave in 2021
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) issued by the U.S. Department of Labor included entitlements for employees to receive paid sick leave for reasons related to COVID-19, along with tax breaks for employers to compensate them for granting this benefit. While the employee entitlement for FFCRA leave expired at the end of 2020, the tax breaks for employers will continue until the end of 2021. This means that, as an employer, you are no longer required to give employees paid sick leave for COVID-19-related reasons. That being said, if you choose to provide this leave to your employees voluntarily, you will still receive the same tax breaks for doing so.
Tax Filing Deadline is April 15, 2021
In 2020, in response to the lockdowns of the COVID-19 pandemic, the tax filing deadline for 2019 was extended until July 15, 2020. Some suspected that a similar extension might be granted in 2021. However, this is not the case. At the time of writing, the tax deadline for 2021 (to file 2020 taxes) has been returned to the traditional date of April 15, 2021. So, you should prepare to file your taxes by that time as you normally would.
Needless to say, there are still a lot of unknowns as to what will happen in the rest of 2021. With a new presidential cabinet set to take office in the coming weeks, things may still change. Stay tuned to this blog for regular updates.
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