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Major changes made to Paycheck Protection Program

As you are probably aware, there have been major changes in the Paycheck Protection Program. The SBA now allows recipient companies an extended period in which they may be able to use their PPP funds from 8 weeks to 24 weeks. Also, only 60% of the proceeds need to be paid out as wages and the filing deadline for submitting your application for forgiveness has been extended to December 31, 2020.

Unfortunately, the Full Time Employee Equivalent safe harbor requirement date of June 30, 2020 has been pushed back to either the date their FTEE forgiveness application is filed or December 31, 2020. Recipients that may have met the terms of the safe harbor on June 30 may not be able to do so at these later dates.

You will be submitting your PPP Loan Forgiveness Application to your lender. This application can be made either on SBA forms or any application designed by your lender. It appears that many lenders are creating online applications to accept your PPP Forgiveness request.

The amount of loan forgiveness is dependent on how the funds were used, how many full time employee equivalents you had post COVID-19 versus pre COVID-19 and whether you choose to follow the original PPP rules or the revised rules.

As there are mutterings of a new set of changes coming, there appears to be no rush to apply for forgiveness. Many lending institutions are requesting that any company who received PPP funds of less than a certain amount need only to certify that they met the requirements of full forgiveness and many recipients that met the June 30 Safe Harbor are complaining that the rules were changed in mid-stream.

We will certainly be available to assist you in your application process. Our fee for this service will based on firm’s normal billing rates with a 25% discount for current business conditions.

Preparing for loan forgiveness

While you focus on running your Business the U.S. Small Business Administration(SBA) and financial institutions are working on finalizing the loan forgiveness application process for Paycheck Protection Program(PPP) loan proceeds.

When can I apply for loan forgiveness? Many of you have or soon will deplete your PPP loan proceeds and will be ready to apply for loan forgiveness we are currently finalizing the loan forgiveness online application portal which will be similar in format to how you will applied for your PPP loan. We are awaiting final instructions as to how we will submit your forgiveness application to the SBA.

As you know the PPP has been updated several times. It is possible that Congress brings forth additional legislative changes that could impact the loan forgiveness process which is why D&F are proceeding with caution and waiting for clarification before filing out forgiveness applications.

Some of the conversations have included options for simplified forgiveness processes and documentation for loan less than a certain dollar amount. There is also consideration of allowing companies hardest hit by the pandemic to apply for a second PPP loan.

We feel it is important to communicate this so you can better understand the variables affecting the timeframe for opening our loan forgiveness application portal. Know that your team is doing everything we can to provide you the simplest process possible. We will move forward as soon as we are certain that we can provide the best PPP loan forgiveness experience.

Keep documenting.

Even if Congress makes concessions for loan forgiveness documentation will still be required please continue to keep diligent records on how you are spending ppp dollars if you are unsure of what documentation you will need remember you have the option for 24 we covered. So there is no need to rush.

The value of the paycheck protection program:

The PPP has been a lifeline for millions of businesses across the country that were adversely impacted by closures. It has been humbling to be part of a program that delivered much needed aid to so many of our clients and their greatest time of need. Thank you for being our client. We are proud to be your accountants.

Congratulations On Your PPP Loan, now the hard part starts.

If you, like many other businesses, have just received your Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan please keep the following in mind.

-PPP loans were created in the CARES Act with the stated purpose of providing a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on payroll.

-PPP loan proceeds may be forgiven, in total or partially, but there are strict rules on the use of the proceeds that need to be followed.

-Total forgiveness can be achieved if a business’ pre Covid employees are kept on the payroll or rehired, all of the proceeds are used for either payroll costs, rent or mortgage interest, utilities and 75% of the forgiven amount is used for payroll costs.

-Many businesses will find the above threshold difficult to meet. In these cases a complicated formula has been devised in order for a business to determine the amount of loan forgiveness.

In order for a business to maximize its loan forgiveness it should carefully monitor and track the expenditure of the PPP proceeds. That is why we recommended that PPP loan proceeds be in a separate bank account and not the business’ operating account and that only qualified expenses should be paid from this account.

By keeping the funds in a separate account after the eight-week period you know that the remaining balance will not be eligible for forgiveness.

Other rules for calculating forgiveness that must be followed are:

Payroll cost equal 75% of the amount of the PPP loan proceeds.

-The percentage of reduction in headcount will reduce the amount forgiven proportionately.

-A per employee reduction of greater than 25% of their wages will reduce the forgiveness amount dollar for dollar.

For those businesses that are deemed to be essential a PPP loan is a godsend but nonessential businesses such as restaurants and retail establishments it can be a double edge sword. If workers that are paid but not performing any duties some of or all of their pay may not be forgiven.

As you can see there is a need to be vigilant in actively monitoring the use of the loan proceeds in order to maximize the loan forgiveness and to avoid repayment of loan proceeds for which your business may not gotten any benefit.

If you need any assistance or have any questions please feel free to contact us.

Good News from the House of Representatives

On May 28, 2020,  the US House of Representatives passed by a wide margin a bill that extends the time frame for the PPP forgiveness from 8 weeks to 24 weeks. The bill was designed to correct what many perceive as the CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program’s failure to assist hard hit businesses. The Senate has been working on a bi-partisan bill that would extend the PPP period to 16 weeks. We should expect a compromise bill to be passed in the near future.

Other News:

The Small Business Administration released its PPP Loan Forgiveness Calculation Form (SBA Form 3508) and its instruction. After analyzing the form and its instruction we have concluded that making the required calculations and providing the requested documents will take significant time and effort. You will need detailed payroll records, documentations of the use of proceeds and backup for the qualified expenses.

The SBA rules now allow businesses to choose an alternate date for the commence of the eight week payroll period. You may choose the start of this period to be the date that payroll commences in lieu of the date that the PPP proceeds were received.

What to expect:

Changes.

We participated in a Webinar with SBA officials on the subject of PPP Forgiveness that revealed that many of the particulars of the forgiveness process have not been worked out. It appears that the SBA is committed to being flexible on the application of its terms but specifics on the corrections have yet to be finalized. Our questions were frequently answered with a shrug and that the answer has yet to be determined.

A copy of SBA Form 3508 and its instruction can be downloaded from our website. Please take time to go over this form and what is required to complete it. If you have questions or in need of assistance to not hesitate to contact us.

Good luck and most of all be careful and stay healthy.

To our clients: We at DFCPA applaud you

We at Diapoules & Feinstein CPAs P.C. want to applaud all of our clients for their determination & courage in these trying times.

All of us at D&F are committed to ensuring that you have success in your future.

If we stick together, we will survive and prosper together.

Now, in the words of one our client;

“Diapoules and Feinstein CPAs PC helped me cut through the banks’ bureaucratic processing of the 2020 Coronavirus Stimulus Program. If not for Marvin Feinsteins’ diligence and perseverance, I might never have received any funds at all. His speedy and concentrated efforts were instrumental in getting me approved within hours of submitting my application to the SBA. Aside from this monumental accomplishment, Marvin is a very knowledgeable CPA who often offers has great ideas for me to implement in my business. He is honest and really cares about the success of his clients.”

  • Gary Welikson, President G and G Garments, NYC

Payroll Protection Program Loans

Good Afternoon and we hope that everyone is safe and healthy.

For Some Good News!

The SBA website for processing applications for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) has been updated and streamlined. They no longer require any collateral or personal guarantees. Hopefully, this time the website will not crash or be hacked. If you had inputted your information into the website prior to it crashing the SBA is offering you free credit monitoring.

A feature of the EIDL is that a $10,000 immediate grant is being issued to each applicant. This $10,000 does not have to be repaid.

The list of the information required for an EIDL is at the end of this memo. You can go onto the SBA Website to apply. The link to the application is https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/. You can enter this information yourself or contact us and we will complete it for a slight fee.

In addition, we conferred with Daniel S Dorfman an attorney at Forchelli, Deegan and Terrana PLLP who clarified an issue that we were concerned about. You can apply for both the EIDL and the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan. However, a business can only apply for both if proceeds are not to be used for the same purpose. Their recommendation is to apply for the EIDL first to obtain the grant and then apply for the PPP. The one caveat is not to co-mingle the funds. The proceeds from the PPP loan should be kept in a separate bank account so as to meet the strict accounting requirements prescribed for forgiveness of all or part of PPP loan proceeds.

We have also attached the information required for the PPP loan. A business applying for a PPP loan needs to contact their bank to see if they are a prescribed SBA lender. If the bank is an SBA approved lender applying for the loan should be done on the bank’s website. As of yesterday, we are not aware of any bank whose website is operational and ready to accept application. Most banks that we have contacted seem to have Friday as the go live date for their PPP online applications.

There are three steps in applying for the loan and we have enclosed a spreadsheet outlining the steps and the information that is needed. Keep in mind that the PPP proceeds used for the payment of payroll costs, rent and utilities will be all or partly forgiven. If you need assistance please contact our office.

We are in a stressful and unprecedented time when we must first be concerned about our and our loved one’s health and safety and then to attend to our business. If you need any assistance or just someone to talk don’t hesitate to reach out to D&F.

Download our PPP Application PDFs here.

If you need any assistance please contact us.

Diapoules & Feinstein CPAs P.C.

Alert to all of our clients

Hold off on your Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Loan Application- There is a better alternative contained in a provision in the recently passed “Cares Act”.

The provision is the Payroll Protection Program. This a $350 billion dollar program specifically dedicated to small businesses. Although the SBA oversees this process, you must apply through a participating bank.  Contact your bank to see if they’re part of the program.  The program bypasses the SBA loan process and is designed to have a turn-around time of only 36 hours.

In addition, the program requires a minimal amount of paperwork, you will not have to sign a personal guarantee, and there is a loan forgiveness provision that can turn all or part of the loan into a non-taxable grant. There is one caveat, you cannot partake in this program if you have already submitted an application for an SBA Disaster Loan.

So please hold off on applying for a SBA Disaster Loan and contact your bank. To discuss this program, you can contact us at info@dfcpaonline.com or you can reach us at (631) 547-1040. We will be happy to assist you.

Good luck and stay safe!

We are here for you.

Diapoules & Feinstein CPAs P.C.

Important Update Regarding Disaster SBA Loans

We are here to help you.  

It disturbs us to announce that today we have learned that three clients appear to have contracted the COVID-19 Virus. None have been confirmed. So please be careful out there, especially if you have an impaired immune system.  

Important News 

SBA has declared the states of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut emergency disaster areas. Therefore, businesses are eligible for emergency loans. Also, last night the Senate approved a massive stimulus package that contains provisions to assist small businesses in their recovery.  

As in past disasters, the Small Business Administration will be processing the disaster loan requests. It is our experience, especially in cases like this, that the process for applying for assistance is time consuming due to the volume of requests.  

The SBA requires a lot of personal and business information which we may not be privy to. If we pause during this process to obtain answers to certain questions, we inevitably get thrown off the system and are unable to access the website until the following day. Therefore, it will be much faster if our clients complete the attached worksheets in full and either begin the application themselves or forward the completed worksheets to us. D&F will not start an application unless the worksheets are completed in full. 

Kindly complete the applications below to begin the process.

SBA Company Information Application

SBA Corporate Financial Information Application

SBA Personal Financial Information Application

Please be patient as the volume of businesses applying is tremendous and we need to go on during the off hours. 

For our NYC clients NYC has two programs to assist small businesses: 

NYC Employee Retention Grant Program: 

  • NYC is offering small businesses with fewer than 5 employees a grant to cover 40% of payroll costs for two months to help retain employees 

NYC Small Business Continuity Loan Fund: 

  • Businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have seen sales decreases of revenue of 25% or more will be eligible for zero interest loans of up to $75,000 to help retain employees and ensure business continuity 

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/businesses/covid19-business-outreach.page 

To begin your application please visit the above website.  

Remember to practice social distancing and above all please protect your health. 

We are here for you.  

Diapoules & Feinstein CPAs P.C. 

 

To all of our clients and acquaintances- We are here for you.

 

To all our clients and acquaintances- We are here for you: 

Yesterday, Governor Cuomo ordered all non-essential businesses to operate remotely and while accounting firms are considered an essential business, out of an abundance of caution and for the safety of our employees, our physical office will be minimally staffed for the immediate future. 

However, all of our staff have been equipped to work remotely. We will be answering our phones and communicating via phone or email.  

If you have sent in your 2019 tax information, we will complete your return and forward it to you via our portal.  

If you have not yet sent in your tax information, we would appreciate it if you could upload it onto our portal.  

Also, you will be able to pay your D&F invoice using our portal. 

Please contact our office if you are not portal enabled. 

As a reminder the tax filing deadline has been extended to July 15,2020. 

For our business clients, 

Please be advised that funding programs are available through the Small Business Administration, New York State, New York City and various other states.  

Please contact us to get the process started.  

 Above all please be safe. Let’s get through this together.  

 Sincerely,  

Diapoules & Feinstein CPAs P.C. 

Important Update from DFCPA

From: Diapoules & Feinstein CPAs P.C.

Important Update:

House Passes Bill Providing Testing, Employment Relief; 90-Day Waiver of Penalties and Interest on Tax Payments

-On March 13, 2020, President Trump declared a national emergency, which frees up $50 billion in funding for state and local governments to use in fighting the pandemic.

– On March 14, 2020, the House, after working closely with Administration officials, passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201) and later an amended version of the bill was passed by the House on March 16, 2020 by unanimous consent,

The President has indicated his support for the bill. The Senate is expected to take up the bill, but is also considering significant changes to it while also considering an even larger stimulus or relief package.

The bill as passed increases funding for testing and extends paid sick leave to employees all over the country affected by the pandemic.

PAID LEAVE

The bill passed by the House requires employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide paid sick leave to employees who are forced to stay home due to infection or to care for a family member (“qualified paid sick leave”) or due to quarantining (“qualified family leave”). The bill compensates employers and the self-employed for this paid leave in the form of a tax credit.

COMMENT.

Only a very small portion of the bill provides tax changes. The bill is largely focused on funding for increased coronavirus testing, ensuring free testing for everyone, and continuing student lunch programs when schools are closed.

In the case of sick leave wages paid by an employer to an employee, the employer receives a refundable credit against its share of the FICA and Medicare portion of the payroll tax.

The credit can be claimed on a quarterly basis, equal to 100 percent of the amount of sick leave wages paid under the new law. The amount of the credit is limited to $200 per day. However, the credit is increased to $511 per day if the employee is on leave because he or she:

  • is subject to a federal, state or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
  • has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19; or
  • is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis

The amount of total hours of paid sick leave is limited by the new law.

For family leave wages paid by an employer, a separate refundable payroll tax credit applies, with different limitations. The 100 percent credit against the employer’s share of the payroll tax is limited to $200 per day, up to an aggregate of $10,000.

For self-employed persons, the credit is allowed against regular income taxes. The limit on sick leave wages is determined by multiplying the number of days (subject to limitation) the self-employed person is unable to perform services in the trade or business by the lesser of 67% of the taxpayer’s average daily self-employment income, or $200 ($511 in the case of the three scenarios that also apply to the employer payroll tax credit). The same calculation is made for family leave wages, with days unable to perform services (no more than 50) multiplied by the lesser of 67% of the taxpayer’s average daily self-employment income, or $200.

The new law provides numerous requirements, limitations and definitions relating to the application of the mandate, as well as the credit.

COMMENT.

As mentioned above, these provisions are all temporary. The credits are applicable from the date selected by the Secretary of the Treasury (which must be within 15 days of the date of enactment) until December 31, 2020. The tax provisions do not make changes to the Internal Revenue Code.

PENALTY AND INTEREST WAIVER

On March 17, 2020, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced that, while the due date for filing 2019 tax returns would not be postponed, the IRS would waive penalties and interest on tax payments for 90 days. The waiver only applies to individual taxpayers owing up to $1 million in taxes and corporations owing up to $10 million in taxes. At the time of publication, the IRS and Treasury had not yet issued guidance on how the waiver would be implemented. Secretary Mnuchin stated that taxpayers are encouraged to still file timely returns, as the IRS is still processing them and many taxpayers receive refunds, which could be beneficial during the current crisis.

ADDITIONAL GUIDANCE

The IRS announced in Notice 2020-15 that a health plan that satisfies the requirements of a high deductible health plan (HDHP) under the Internal Revenue Code, and thus allows individuals to deduct contributions to a health savings account, will not cease to be qualified as an HDHP if it allows for COVID-19 testing. This includes testing to be done with deductibles below the minimum deductible for an HDHP, including a $0 deductible.