Today the President signed the CARES Act which is the Phase 3 response to the Corona-virus pandemic. Understanding the total impact of the bill will be evolving over the next few days. The big news seems to be that we will get some relief for employee payroll and benefit costs for the next 8 weeks. DON’T LAY PEOPLE OFF QUITE YET!
If we read the bill correctly, employers will be able to get a $10,000 grant within 3 days of applying for relief. Use it for payroll, benefits, rent and other necessary expenses and it will not have to be paid back. Then you may qualify for two and a half times your normal payroll as a loan. Demonstrate that you use it for payroll, benefits and rent and it too can be converted to a grant that does not require repayment.
This is all in addition to the disaster loans that you can apply for under the provisions of the phase 2 relief bill that was passed last week.
The long and short of it: don’t lay off necessary staff until you fully understand the implications of the CARES act. It looks like the goal of the legislation is to allow companies to keep critical employees on board so as to speed the recovery when we get out of quarantine.
We will stay on top of the information and continue to provide updates. Of course, this applies to employers with fewer than 500 employees.
Stay safe out there.