President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) into effect just last week. The Act was signed with the intention to provide financial assistance ($350 billion to be exact) to states, counties, municipalities, territories, and tribal governments to help cover expenses and make up for any lost revenue due to the overall disastrous economic impact of COVID-19. The ARPA puts forth extensions to current policies and offers new policies to consider as well.
Resourcing Edge continues to be here to support you. Please find additional information below regarding our highlights of the Act, which will go into effect April 1, 2021:
Paid Sick and Family Leave Credits
The ARPA does not mandate that employers are required to allow their employees to still use COVID Sick or COVID Leave benefits. Should employers choose to continue these benefits, the 10-day limit for paid COVID Sick leave will restart on April 1, 2021, and the tax credits set forth by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) will be extended to September 30, 2021.
The ARPA extends the COVID Sick eligible criteria to include time for individuals to receive the COVID vaccination and/or recover from the COVID vaccination. It also extends the aggregate amount of COVID Leave pay an individual is eligible for from $10,000 to $12,000. In addition, the 10-day waiting period to utilize COVID Leave will be waived. COVID Leave eligibility should be applied the same as COVID Sick eligibility.
Federal unemployment benefits are extended in the amount of an additional $300 per week through August 29, 2021.
Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC)
The ARPA extends the ERTC to apply to wages paid through December 31, 2021. The ERTC continues to be applied at 70% of qualified wages per calendar quarter for the extended time period.
The ARPA provides a temporary 100% COBRA subsidy for qualified individuals in the event of an involuntary termination or reduction in hours. Subsidies apply to coverage periods beginning on April 1, 2021 and ending on September 30, 2021.
If you would like to take advantage of the COVID Sick, COVID Leave or ERTC programs, please reach out to your Client Account Manager or Support Representative. Resourcing Edge will provide the required COBRA notices and continue to administer the COBRA program for clients utilizing our benefit services.
For more information, please visit our COVID-19 Resource Center.