COVID-19 Update

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) has impacted all of our lives and will continue to do so in the immediate future. We will keep updating this page with the latest information. You can also follow our posts on Facebook and LinkedIn.

We are ready to and available to help in any way. Please contact us at any time. 

NAVIGATION

  1. Tax Filing Deadlines     (updated 3/24/20)
  2. SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) - Covid-19     (updated 4/2/20)
  3. Families First Coronavirus Response Act      (updated 3/24/20)
  4. SGA Office Updates     (updated 6/25/20)
  5. Individual Retirement Account and Health Savings Account Contribution Deadlines     (updated 3/25/20)
  6. Unemployment Filing     (updated 3/25/20)
  7. CARES Act Provisions for Farmers & Rural Communities     (updated 3/27/20)
  8. Action Steps for Farmers with Employees        (updated 3/27/20)
  9. Get Your Economic Stimulus Payment       (updated 4/14/20)
  10. Save Small Business Fund - US Chamber of Commerce     (updated 4/20/20)
  11. Farmers and Ranchers Eligible for SBA Ecoonomic Injury Disaster Loans     (updated 5/4/20)
  12. Coronavirus Food Assistance Program      (updated 5/22/20)

1. Tax Filing Deadlines 

(Information verified as of March 24, 2020)

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the following changes to the 2019 individual income tax filings have been released by the Treasury Department and Kansas Department of Revenue.

 2019 Tax Returns Due July 15, 2020

  • ALL income tax returns AND balances due to the federal government and Kansas have been delayed until July 15, 2020, regardless of the amount owed.  No extensions are required to qualify for this.

NO 2019 Extension Required

  • Any extension of time to file your taxes later than July 15, 2020 will require filing an extension request on Form 4868 with the IRS.  This Form 4868 extension only gives you additional time to file.  Tax payments for balances due after July 15th will incur penalty and interest.

2020 Estimate Payments Delayed

  • This relief also applies to estimated tax payments due to the IRS by April 15, 2020. 1st quarter estimated tax payments are due July 15th, but 2nd quarter estimates are still due June 15th.

How to Submit Your Tax Information

We are still open for business and are still preparing tax returns. We encourage all clients who are expecting a refund to get their tax returns prepared as soon as possible.  

Our office is open by appointment only. We have electronic and mailing methods available for you to get us your tax information and various ways to deliver your tax returns. We also have a secure drop box in the lobby of our Manhattan office. Please contact our office to discuss these options.


2. SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) - Covid-19

(information updated on April 2, 2020)

As of March 21, 2020, Kansas is officially part of the Economic Injury Disaster Declaration from the Small Business Administration (SBA) This declaration allows businesses located in all 105 counties in Kansas to apply for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL).

The Small Business Administration has streamlined the process to obtain Economic Injury Disaster Loans. They estimate it will take 2 hours 10 minutes to complete the application. There is limited funding for these loans, so we recommend filing them as soon as possible.

$10,000 FORGIVEABLE GRANT

These EIDL Loans now provide the opportunity for clients to get a $10,000 grant in the form of an advance on their EIDL Loan which our clients will NOT be required to repaid. The advance will be available even if the application is denied. Currently, if clients apply for the EIDL Loan and the 7(a)/Paycheck Protection Loan it is expected that Loan Forgiveness will be reduced by the $10,000 from the EIDL advance. 

Clients who filled out an EIDL Loan application before the $10,000 grant was part of the process will need to look for future instructions and guidance to ensure that the $10,000 advance will be forgiven. 

These EIDL loans will likely be the best options for most sole proprietorships and entities without employees or independent contractors. This would include sole proprietors that file a Schedule C, and landlords that file Schedule E.  Many of these operations payroll costs and other 7(a) non payroll related costs won’t exceed the forgivable $10,000 from the EIDL option.

IMPORTANT DATES

  • IF YOU HAVE LAID OFF EMPLOYEES – although not required, for maximum loan forgiveness you must rehire employees within 30 days of the act being signed.  Thus, APRIL 26th is an important date for you. Since your loan date is the start of the 8 week “Forgiveness Period” we recommend you try to schedule late in the week of April 20th as your loan date.
  • IF YOU HAVE NOT LAID OFF EMPLOYEES – you can process your loan at any time. HOWEVER, you must have the loan in place no later than May 5th.  The “Forgiveness Period” is 8 weeks and only amounts paid prior to June 30th count towards the Forgiveness.

LEARN MORE


3. Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

(information updated on March 24, 2020)

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) expansion of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) will go into effect April 2, 2020. The following is a summary of how it affects employers and employees.

Employer

  • Considered covered employer if less than 500 employees.
  • Small Businesses (50 or less) may qualify for exemption from paying sick leave.
  • Required to pay up to 80 hours of leave at varying rates of pay.
  • Not required to report FICA taxes but will report Medicare taxes.
  • Eligible to receive a limited refundable payroll tax credit.
  • Self-Employed receive an income tax credit if eligible for paid leave as employee.

https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employer-paid-leave

Employee

  • Unable to work (ill or quarantined) are paid up to 80 hours at regular rate of pay.
  • Unable to work (care for individual ill or quarantined) are paid up to 80 hours at 2/3 rate of pay.
  • Unable to work (school/daycare closure) are paid up to 80 hours at 2/3 rate of pay. Must be employed for at least 30 days.
  • School/Daycare closures can extend pay for an additional 10 weeks.
  • Payroll taxes will be withheld from leave payments.
  • Payments are limited to a maximum of $511/day or $200/day depending on reason for leave.

https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employee-paid-leave


4. SGA Office Updates 

(information updated on June 25, 2020)

Our staff have switched from working remotely to being full time in the office. We are still encouraging clients to contact us via phone or email whenever possible.

We appreciate your patience as we try to do our best to respond to this evolving situation. Thank you!

5. Individual Retirement Account and Health Savings Account Contribution Deadlines

(information updated on March 25, 2020)

The IRS has clarified that the extension of the income tax filing deadline to July 15th extends the deadline to make both Traditional and Roth IRA Contributions, as well as Health Savings Account (HSA) Contributions. 

  1. IRA Contributions now due by July 15th, not April 15th.
  2. HSA Contributions now due by July 15th, not April 15th.

Follow this link for more information: 
https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/filing-and-payment-deadlines-questions-and-answers


6. Unemployment Filing

(information updated on March 25, 2020)

If an employer is doing a layoff and recommending their staff file for unemployment, in order to expedite the process, the employer will need to use an excel template that needs to be downloaded from KDOL’s website.  It is very specific and the template is not to be modified.  The form is then uploaded to the same website.  Since their phone lines are being flooded, this is the recommended process from their office.

Download the spreadsheet here: 
https://www.kansasemployer.gov/uitax/Tax/LayoffSelect.aspx

The benefits of the employer going through this process:

  1. Expedites the process with zero waiting
  2. Reduces unemployment fraud
  3. Reduces paperwork
  4. Each employee does not have to apply for benefits individually.  It will still be the responsibility of the employee to file their weekly claim.
  5. The employer receives notices regarding benefits provided in summary form, not separate notifications.

7. CARES Act Provisions for Farmers & Rural Communities

(information obtained March 25, 2020 from the United States Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry)

The CARES Act provides relief for:

Farmers and Ranchers

  • $9.5 billion dedicated disaster fund to help farmers who are experiencing financial losses from the coronavirus crisis, including targeted support for fruit and vegetable growers, dairy and livestock farmers, and local food producers, who have been shorted from receiving emergency assistance in the past.
  • $14 billion to fund the Farm Bill’s farm safety net through the Commodity Credit Corporation.
  • Eligibility for farmers and agricultural and rural businesses to receive up to $10 million in small business interruption loans from eligible lenders, including Farm Credit institutions, through the Small Business Administration. Repayment forgiveness will be provided for funds used for payroll, rent or mortgage, and utility bills.
  • $3 million to increase capacity at the USDA Farm Service Agency to meet increased demand from farmers affected by the coronavirus crisis.

Assistance for Small Towns and Rural Communities

  • $1 billion available in guaranteed loans to help rural businesses weather the economic downturn. 
  • $100 billion to hospitals, health care providers, and facilities, including those in rural areas.
  • $25 million for telemedicine tools to help rural patients access medical care no matter where they live.
  • $100 million for high speed internet expansion in small towns and rural communities.
  • Over $70 million to help the U.S. Forest Service serve rural communities and reduce the spread of coronavirus through personal protective equipment for first responders and cleaning of facilities.

Protections for Consumers and the Food Supply

  • $55 million for inspection and quarantine at our borders to protect against invasive pests and animal disease.
  • $33 million for overtime and temporary food safety inspectors to protect America’s food supply at meat processing plants.
  • $45 million to ensure quality produce and meat reaches grocery stores through increased support for the Agricultural Marketing Service.
  • $1.5 million to expedite EPA approvals of disinfectants needed to control the spread of coronavirus.

Food Access for Families

  • $15.8 billion to fund food assistance changes made in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. Republicans and the Trump Administration blocked additional funding to expand benefits for children, families, and seniors.
  • $9 billion to fund child nutrition improvements made in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
  • $450 million to provide food banks with additional resources for food and distribution. 
  • $100 million for food distribution in Tribal communities to provide facility improvements, equipment upgrades, and food purchases.

----> Download a printable version of these provisions here.


8. Action Steps for Farmers with Employees

(information updated on March 27, 2020)

As our state, nation and the world combat the coronavirus, these steps, provided by Cornell Cooperative Extension's Agricultural Workforce Development, can protect you and your employees.

  1. Talk with your employees about coronavirus, how it spreads, and how to prevent getting infected.
  2. Clean and disinfect your workplace, including the breakroom, bathroom, doorknobs and computer keyboards, and provide guidance to employees about proper cleaning procedures.
  3. Communicate with employees that they should stay home if they are sick. Be sure your employees understand that their health and that of their co-workers’ comes first. Communicate and make a plan to cover for sick employees.
  4. Prepare your disaster contingency plan. What will you do if 50 percent of your employees become sick and unable to work? Are there neighboring farms who might be able to share resources in an emergency? Who will manage for a few weeks if you or another key manager are unable to leave your house or are hospitalized?
  5. Review your sick leave policy. Do you provide paid sick leave for your employees? If you do not, will employees feel financially obligated to come to work even if they are sick?

---> Read and download the full list of 8 tips here.


9. Get Your Economic Stimulus Payment  

(information updated on April 14, 2020)

Here's how to get your Economic Impact Payment (i.e., "stimulus check") as soon as possible. The payments are automatic for most taxpayers. However, some people will need to update their bank account information on the IRS website.

If you filed your 2018 or 2019 tax returns with direct deposit information

  • No action necessary, unless you need to change the bank account.

If you receive Social Security via direct deposit

  • No action necessary, SSA/IRS will send their payment to the regular bank account.

If you receive Social Security benefits by check and do not file a tax return

  • You will receive your check by mail.

If you did not file a tax return in 2018 or 2019

If you filed your 2018 or 2019 tax return but did not provide your bank info for a direct deposit refund

If you need assistance with entering the info on the IRS website, contact your tax preparer who will help provide the following information:

  • Social Security Number
  • Adjusted Gross Income from most recent return submitted
  • Amount refunded or owed on latest filed tax return
  • Bank account type
  • Account number
  • Routing number

10. Save Small Business Fund - US Chamber of Commerce

(information updated on April 20, 2020)

Small businesses with 3 to 20 employees have a new opportunity to apply for $5,000 grants. The Save Small Business Fund is funded by corporate and philanthropic partners through the US Chamber of Commerce.

The application goes live on Monday, April 20 at 2 p.m. CDT. We expect these funds will go VERY quickly, so be sure to apply as soon as it goes live.

The grant qualifications include:

  • You must run a small business or Chamber of Commerce
  • You must employ between 3 and 20 people (including yourself and not including independent contractors)
  • Be located in an economically vulnerable community, based on your business’ zip code, as defined as the bottom 80% of the most economically distressed zip codes in the United States, as ranked by the Distressed Communities Index
  • Have been harmed financially by the COVID-19 pandemic

The short application should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete. You will need your business’ W-9 form. (Download here.)

Grants of $5,000 will be awarded on a weekly basis, but you only need to apply one time to be eligible for funding. Each grant must be applied towards business expenses, and you will receive a follow-up survey to learn how it was spent and the impact it made. There is more information on the FAQ page of their website.


11. Farmers and Ranchers Eligible for SBA Ecoonomic Injury Disaster Loans

(information updated on May 5, 2020)

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural businesses affected by the Coronavirus pandemic are now eligible for SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and EIDL Advance programs.

These low-interest, long-term loans will help keep agricultural businesses viable while bringing stability to the nation’s vitally important food supply chains.

Agricultural businesses include businesses engaged in the legal production of food and fiber, ranching, and raising of livestock, aquaculture, and all other farming and agricultural related industries (as defined by section 18(b) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 647(b)). Eligible agricultural businesses must have 500 or fewer employees.

The SBA is accepting new EIDL applications on a limited basis only.

----> For more information, please visit www.sba.gov/Disaster.


12. Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP)

(information updated on May 22, 2020)

The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) will provide up to $16 billion in direct payments to deliver relief to America’s farmers and ranchers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Eligible crops and livestock include:

  • malting barley, canola, corn, millet, oats, soybeans, sorghum, sunflowers, durum wheat, hard red spring wheat
  • cattle, lambs, yearlings, hogs, dairy milk, wool
  • almonds, beans, broccoli, sweet corn, lemons, iceberg lettuce, spinach, squash, strawberries, tomatoes

Payment amounts vary by type of commodity, inventory during the pandemic, national price declines, and ongoing market disruptions.

Producers can apply for assistance beginning on May 26, 2020.

----> Additional information and application forms can be found at farmers.gov/cfap.


Disclaimer: Congress is continuing to change the legal provisions in response to the Covid 19 Disaster. 
Please check for updates and clarifications as regulatory agencies issue actual policies.



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