The Small Business Administration (SBA) announced today that it has reached the $349 billion lending cap for the Paycheck Protection Program that was established by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Small Businesses who have filed loan applications will have to wait while congress debates whether to approve additional funding for the program. Additional details
Governor Cuomo issued an executive order on April 15th, 2020 that New Yorkers must wear a mask or cloth covering mouth and nose when in public and when social distancing can’t be maintained. The order applies to anyone over the age of two who can medically tolerate a face covering and takes effect at 8 pm on April 17th, 2020. Additional details
Governor Cuomo has issued a new executive order for essential businesses in New York. Beginning at 8 pm on April 15th, 2020 these businesses must provide free face masks for employees who have direct contact with customers or the general public. Additional details
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act included language that restores the ability to use HSAs, FSAs, and HRAs to buy certain over-the-counter drugs and medical supplies without a prescription. It also adds menstrual products to the list of qualified medical expenses for the first time.
The Affordable Care Act had removed OTC drugs from the list of qualified medical expenses. Additional details
On April 2, 2020, Excellus announced that it will “waive out of pocket costs for COVID-19 medical testing, diagnosis and treatment for its fully insured employer groups, individual market qualified health plans and Medicare Advantage members for the next 60 days.”
Effective April 1st, 2020 through December 31st, 2020, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires businesses with fewer than 500 employees to provide paid sick leave or expanded family medical leave for specific situations related to COVID-19.
Employers are reimbursed through tax credits for employee wages and for health premiums to maintain employee coverage during qualifying leave.
Covered employers must post a notice of employee rights in the workplace or email the notice to employees who are working remotely.
The CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act, signed into law on March 27th, 2020, provides relief to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Loans and grants through the Small Business Administration (SBA) are intended to help employers retain employees and pay rent/mortgage and utilities.
On March 18, 2020 Governor Cuomo signed legislation for emergency paid sick leave for New Yorkers who are quarantined because of COVID-19.
The law provides job protection and employer-paid leave for those who are quarantined by the Department of Health or other government entity or those who are caring for a quarantined family member.
On Monday, April 6th, 2020, Governor Cuomo extended the New York State on PAUSE executive order for 2 additional weeks. The 10-point policy closing schools and non-essential businesses and encouraging social distancing will continue through April 29, 2020.
On April 8th, 2020 New York State issued an emergency regulation which requires all health insurance carriers to defer premium payments by individuals and small group plans until June 1st, 2020 if they demonstrate financial hardship due to COVID-19.
The carriers must also continue to pay claims and to work with those who need assistance in transitioning to alternate coverage. Additional details