Furloughed employees get more help
The recently passed Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides your employees with more financial relief when you need to lay them off during the coronavirus pandemic.
Here is a snapshot of the unemployment benefits section of the bill and how it affects employees that you must furlough.
- There is help for your employees. The Act provides individuals who are not already eligible for state and federal unemployment programs, including self-employed individuals and part-time workers, a set amount of unemployment compensation.
- Let employees know how much help there is. There are different components to the new law’s unemployment benefits:
- Each worker will receive unemployment benefits based on the state in which they work, and
- In addition to their state unemployment benefits, each worker will receive an additional $600 per week from the federal government.
- The calculation includes part-time workers! Benefits for self-employed workers are calculated based on previous income and are also eligible for up to an additional $600 per week. Part-time workers are also eligible.
- Adding 13 weeks of unemployment. The CARES Act provides eligible workers with an additional 13 weeks of unemployment benefits. Most states already provide 26 weeks of benefits, bringing the total number of weeks that someone is eligible for benefits to 39.
- Adding money to the initial unemployment benefit amount. Remember, in addition to extending the number of weeks of state unemployment, the federal payment can add up to $600 per week of benefits through July 31, 2020.
- Help your laid off employees. Let your furloughed employees know they must apply for unemployment benefits through your state unemployment office. Most state applications can now be filled out online. Those who normally don’t qualify for unemployment benefits, such as your part-time workers, need to monitor their state’s unemployment office website to find out when they can apply.
- Subject to changes. With the rapid implementation of this brand new program, changes are sure to be made. So tell employees to keep in touch with state unemployment websites to get updates and clarification of these new programs.
What to do NOW!
If you need to lay off employees, coach them to contact your state unemployment office as soon as possible. State offices and websites are being slammed, so the sooner they get in the queue the better for their situation.
As always, should you have any questions or concerns regarding your tax situation please feel free to contact us.
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