HMA is in the process of gaining a thorough understanding of the requirements and application process for the Forgivable Loan provisions of the CARES Act that was recently enacted by Congress. We are planning to coordinate the application process for HMA retainer clients for whom we provide bookkeeping services and will provide advice to non-bookkeeping HMA clients as well. See the attached summary of this important governmental assistance program as provided by the US Chamber of Commerce.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act allocated $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Known as the Paycheck Protection Program, the initiative provides 100% federally guaranteed loans to small businesses. Importantly, these loans may be forgiven if borrowers maintain their payrolls during the crisis or restore their payrolls afterward. The administration soon will release more details including the list of lenders offering loans under the program. CLICK HERE to view their summary.
There are other provisions of the Act that also warrant review. The CARES Act also includes tax incentives for employers. It provides employers with a refundable payroll tax credit of 50% on qualified wages (including health benefits) paid to employees between March 31, 2020 and December 31, 2020. The payroll tax credit will apply to the first $10,000 in eligible compensation. As HMA learns more about this provision, we will pass that information along.
Finally, there is also a provision that can provide accelerated and advanced Medicare payments to physician practices. Once HMA learns more about how to access that potential source of cash flow, we will address this opportunity for our clients as well.