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Author: Wiss

Paycheck Protection Enacted For Small Businesses

By Travis Miskowitz [Updated 4/3/2020] Congress passed “The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act” (CARES Act), which included the “Paycheck Protection Program” (PPP) for small businesses. PPP applications can be obtained from participating SBA lenders beginning today. Many banks have reported that they may be requiring submissions to come from current banking clients while others have been struggling to get all the necessary steps in place. While each bank is creating...

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Key Tax Provisions of the $2 Trillion CARES Act

By Mike Bodrato The Senate voted last night, 96-0, to approve the Coronavirus Aid Relief, and Economic Security Act or the CARES Act, which has more than $2 trillion in spending and tax breaks to assist economically and fund a nationwide effort to stop the coronavirus.  At this writing, the CARES Act is still awaiting House approval and the President’s signature, which is not expected until tomorrow. The bipartisan legislation includes about $500 billion that can be used to back...

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401(k) Plans and the Coronavirus

By Craig Erickson With the global pandemic caused by COVID-19 causing vast uncertainties in the economy, employers that sponsor employee benefit plans and the plan fiduciaries must continue to manage and administer their benefit plans, as well as address inquiries from their participants.  The following are some topics that may be helpful during these times. Hardship Withdrawals Plan sponsors may receive calls from plan participants in the near future asking for ways they can financially...

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Coronavirus Retirement Plan Review

By Craig Erickson With the continual uncertainty we are facing each day, it is important to keep in mind that changes in legislation may impact your current design of your employee benefit plan.  Following are some topics Plan sponsors and fiduciaries of employee benefit plans may overlook. 401(k) and Profit-Sharing Plans: Employer Contributions – Plan sponsors and fiduciaries may want to consider reducing or halting employer contributions.  For non-safe harbor plans (match or non-elective...

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Managing Cash Flow During Crisis

By Travis Miskowitz, Manager, Wiss CFO Advisory Cash flow is the lifeblood of your business. During this (or any) time of crisis, it is imperative to keep an eye on your cash flow and regularly monitor your cash position.  Instituting effective cash flow management may be the most important action you can take to navigate through challenging times. The Wiss team has put together this list of recommendations to help monitor your progress: Monitor your cash flow regularly With the...

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IRS Releases Official Guidance After Treasury Secretary’s Announcement

by Evan Gernant Following Secretary Mnuchin’s earlier announcement, the Treasury Department released guidance on Friday, which supersedes and expands upon the guidance issued earlier this week that gave taxpayers extra time to pay their taxes but not to file. The new guidance provides for the following relief: The filing of 2019 federal income tax returns and the payment of 2019 federal income tax (including tax on self-employment income) due on April 15, 2020, is automatically...

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Tax Filing Deadline Moved to July 15

by Evan Gernant Secretary Mnuchin announced, this morning, that the filing deadline for 2019 tax returns will be moved to July 15, 2020.  This modifies the IRS announcement from Tuesday which allowed for tax payments to be deferred to July 15, but explicitly required that tax returns be filed by April 15.  Today’s announcement is welcomed news to many taxpayers and tax professionals who felt the original relief fell short of what was needed at this time.  We will continue to monitor...

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Families First Coronavirus Response Act

President Trump has now signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, providing emergency economic relief and support to American workers who may be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.  The Act applies to businesses with less than 500 employees and will take effect on April 2, 2020. There are two main aspects of the Act as outlined below: Emergency Paid Sick Leave This portion of the Act allows eligible employees to take two weeks of paid sick leave in the event they...

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How U.S. Healthcare Organizations can Secure Their Operations to Better Support Patient Care

by Michael Castle Uncertainty still abounds on whether and how the virus could mutate as well as how many waves of the outbreak might take place. And with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warning that it’s no longer a matter of if but when the coronavirus spreads further within the United States, patient care is priority #1. Still, for U.S. healthcare organizations, business continuity management is critical, and they must have a proper risk plan in place sooner...

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U.S. Treasury Response to the Coronavirus

by Evan Gernant The Coronavirus has intruded into all facets of our lives.  As we all try to grapple with the uncertainty this situation brings we still find ourselves in the midst of tax filing season, an already stressful time for business owners and other taxpayers. The Treasury Department issued guidance yesterday clarifying Secretary Mnuchin’s announcement on Tuesday that taxpayers can delay income tax payments due April 15, 2020.  The guidance provides that for all taxpayers...

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Coronavirus Relief Update for Employers in New York and New Jersey

Like many of you, we have been working to keep up with current news regarding information for businesses and their employees. The speed at which there are changes and announcements at the federal and state levels is rapid, and our goal is always to relay that information. Federal, state and local governments are working to develop financial aid packages to help businesses that are struggling as a result of the pandemic.  As companies struggle with how to continue their business,...

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Continual Planning to Keep your Business Running Effectively During This Crisis

By David Singletary As we all continue to face the abrupt changes in the way in which we work and the pressures on all of us to keep our businesses going during this crisis, I want to share with you some key insights and things to continue to think about as we move through this “remote” time. Please know that I along with our team are here to help you in any way that we can.  There are some key elements that each of us needs to ensure are in place to create the most effective way...

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5 Questions to Prepare Your COVID-19 Readiness

By Paul Ursich Beyond the immense impacts the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is having on public health, the pandemic directly impacts economic activity and poses unique challenges to businesses across industries because of its potentially compounding and unpredictable consequences. With massive quarantines, travel restrictions and factory shutdowns, companies are struggling to quantify potential exposure. Attempting to mitigate potential losses from an unknown number of variables...

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Employer Concerns in the Wake of the Coronavirus

The Coronavirus is on everyone’s mind, and while news channels continue to report on the speed in which the virus is spreading, fear and panic has started to set in.  Employers should take proactive steps to not only communicate to their employees, but to also develop contingency plans should an outbreak disrupt their normal business operations.  Your employees want to know that you care about their safety and have a plan in place, so if your business has not yet started discussions...

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New Jersey’s Changing Laws Regarding Independent Contractors

New Jersey continues down the path of strengthening employee rights in the workplace, with recent legislation designed to help and protect workers. Last month Governor Murphy signed several bills into law to combat worker misclassification.   Below is a summary of newly enacted laws which New Jersey businesses should pay close attention to: Penalties for Misclassification New Jersey employers that misclassify workers as independent contractors may be liable for a fine of up to $250...

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Elective Business Alternative Income Tax for Pass-Through Entities to Address Federal Limitation on State and Local Deduction

On January 13, 2020, Governor Phil Murphy signed into law Senate Bill 3246 establishing the business alternative income tax, an elective New Jersey business tax for pass-through entities. A corresponding refundable state gross income tax credit is allowed for the owners of the pass-through entities to offset personal or corporate income tax liability.  The pass-through entity tax applies to tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2020.  The intent of the new legislation is to...

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Rising to the Challenge: How Wiss Responded to Historic Tax Legislation

An interview with Michael LaMotta, Partner-in-Charge, Tax Services at Wiss & Co. LLP On December 22, 2017, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was signed into law. It presented the most significant changes to the tax code in over thirty years, and its effects were wide-ranging. Everyone from individual taxpayers and business owners to accountants and financial advisers had to learn the ropes. Now, two years after the bill was passed, many are still playing catch-up. “When the tax reform...

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Nonprofit News Special Update: Parking Tax Repealed and Single Rate Excise Tax for Private Foundations

by Linda Curro The government funding legislation passed by Congress in December 2019 includes the repeal of the Internal Revenue Code § 512(a)(7), commonly referred to as the “Parking Tax.” The legislation was signed by the President on December 20th, 2019. The original provision, enacted as part of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Acts, required tax-exempt organizations to include in unrelated business income the amounts they pay or incur on qualified transportation fringe benefits. ...

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Employee Perspective: Stephanie Hughes on Financial Strategies for the Second Generation

by Stephanie Hughes All employees have financial concerns, but for those who are also parents, these concerns can be especially overwhelming. From childcare to higher education, financial worries can spill over into other areas of life, including work. While this type of stress can adversely affect the health and well-being of individuals and their families, it can also hinder employees’ happiness, engagement, and productivity at their jobs. Therefore, it’s in employers’ best interest...

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Important 2019 Year-End Tasks: HR and Payroll, Including New Form W-4

by Laura Melville The end of the year marks an ideal time for employers to take inventory and prepare for the transition to the New Year. As 2019 comes to an end, we put together this checklist to help make sure you are prepared and suggest taking the following action steps: Have your employees review their personal information, including name, address and social security number, and make any updates before Form W-2s are prepared; Review your records and determine if there is any...

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A Breakdown of the Opportunity Zones Program as the Deadline for Investment Nears

Interview with Alex Narcise and Stephanie Hughes The Opportunity Zones program, created by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, offers private equity firms, family offices, and asset managers the chance to make an investment with up to 100% exemption of capital gains taxes. The deadline, however, is fast approaching: December 31, 2019. In this post, we’ll provide a breakdown of the program, as well as lay out the possible advantages and disadvantages of investment. Let’s dive in. What...

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A message to CEOs: When a CFO joins or leaves your company, it’s an ideal time to conduct a Business Process Review

by Paul Ursich A CFO entry or exit event, especially when it comes to mid-sized companies, is often an opportune time to conduct a Business Process Review. When a mid-sized company decides to bring on a CFO, it’s an indication of an important company life cycle shift.  Making the investment into this critical CFO role is a major one. It’s the perfect time to conduct a Business Process Review to provide valuable insight into this new hire. An immediate and independent review can drastically...

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New HRA Option for Businesses Beginning January 1, 2020

Businesses that have struggled with wanting to provide an alternative to a group health plan for their employees will now have a new option to consider with an Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangement (ICHRA), which will be available beginning January 1, 2020.  This benefit allows employers to reimburse employees tax-free for health insurance coverage bought on the individual market, thus allowing companies to provide benefits without having to offer a traditional group...

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NJ Employment Law Update: Salary History Ban

In yet another step toward strengthening equal pay protections among workers, New Jersey joins the list of states that will now prohibit companies from asking prospective employees about their salary history. The new law, which will take effect in January 2020, makes it illegal for employers to ask about an applicant’s salary, commission or benefits history during the hiring process.  Companies may only consider this information if voluntarily offered by the applicant without coercion,...

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The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017

by Mary Vasilescu In December 2017 the U.S. passed a comprehensive tax reform package focused on supporting U.S. investments and the repatriation of foreign profits. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA) lowered the corporate federal tax rate from 35 to 21 percent and made significant changes as to how foreign generated income would be taxed going forward. The TCJA enacted a “territorial” tax system and at the same time introduced provisions aimed to prevent U.S. companies from...

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