Your Guide to Navigating COVID-19

The global impact of COVID-19 continues to evolve. Use these resources to stay safe and informed.


Check out our additional resources on returning to work.

Trusted Updates

CDC Guidance
Coronavirus Disease
WHO Guidance
Coronavirus Outbreak

Getting Medical Care

Find information on resources and services available to benefits-eligible members, and details on COVID-19 testing and treatment.
Justworks can support your team. Make sure your benefits-eligible employees know that they can leverage their Employee Assistance Program (EAP) through Health Advocate, or primary care provider for trusted, reliable information about COVID-19.
Per official guidance, people should also utilize telemedicine whenever possible. As a Justworks member, benefits-eligible employees can access One Medical’s virtual care and testing in major cities across the country. All employees enrolled in Aetna can also utilize Teladoc for their COVID-19 related concerns.
For employee questions on how specific medical plans cover COVID-19 testing and treatment, or additional questions involving their personal health information (PHI), they should connect with Health Advocate at 866-799-2728.
In recent weeks, major insurance carriers have also begun issuing guidance on new COVID-19 resources for their enrolled members. Justworks has communicated this guidance to your team members directly, according to their specific insurance provider. As we receive new guidance from insurance providers, we will continue to ensure your people have the information they need to feel safe and secure.
We have aggregated the Aetna, Kaiser Permanente, and UnitedHealthcare resources that are available to benefits-eligible team members below.

Utilize One Medical for digital screening, care over video chat, and help coordinating testing.

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As an Aetna member, people have access to the following services:
  • Aetna will waive co-pays for all physician-ordered diagnostic testing related to COVID-19 for the duration of the federal mandate under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
  • Aetna will waive member cost shares for all in-network outpatient behavioral and mental health telemedicine visits through December 31, 2020.
  • Aetna is waiving cost-sharing and co-pays for inpatient hospital admissions related to COVID-19 for Aetna’s commercially insured members through December 31, 2020.
  • Through existing care management programs, Aetna will proactively reach out to members most at-risk for COVID-19.
  • As of September 18, 2020, Aetna has communicated that existing prior authorizations for medications, including specialty medications, can be extemeded by an additional 90 days, up to nine months, but not to exceed the member's plan benefit year or December 31, 2020.
  • CVS Pharmacy, part of CVS Health, the parent company of Aetna, will also waive charges for home delivery of prescription medications, offer 90-day maintenance medication prescriptions for insured members, and Aetna will waive early refill limits on 30-day prescription maintenance medications for all members with pharmacy benefits administered through CVS Caremark.
As a Justworks member, you can also utilize One Medical’s virtual care with no co-pay, for your COVID-19 related concerns.

Utilize One Medical for digital screening, care over video chat, and help coordinating testing.

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As a Kaiser Permanente member, people have access to the following services:
  • Cost-sharing (deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance) will be reduced to zero dollars ($0.00) for medically necessary screening and testing for COVID-19 including the visit, associated lab testing, and radiology services in a plan hospital, emergency or urgent care setting, or medical office. This cost sharing reduction will apply to all Kaiser Permanente and other plan (participating) providers.
  • Kaiser Permanente’s National Benefit Policy was updated Friday, April 3, 2020 to now include waived member out-of-pocket costs for treatment related to a positive COVID-19 diagnosis. Members who are diagnosed with COVID-19 will not have to pay co-pays or other cost-share related to their medical care and treatment of COVID-19, even if they have to stay in the hospital.
  • As of April 1, Kaiser Permanente is waiving member out-of-pocket costs for inpatient and outpatient services when treating COVID-19. Members who are diagnosed with COVID-19 will not have to pay co-pays or other cost-share related to their medical care and treatment of COVID-19, even if they have to stay in the hospital. This waiver applies to all admissions whose date of service is from April 1 through the end of 2020 (unless superseded by government action or extended by Kaiser Permanente).
  • This waiver of member out-of-pocket costs will apply to all places of service including, but not limited to, Hospitalization, Office Visit, Telemedicine, Emergency Room and Urgent Care.
  • This waiver also applies to inpatient medical, inpatient pharmacy, outpatient medical, and transportation costs associated with the treatment of a COVID-19 diagnosis.
  • Kaiser Permanente’s updated national benefit policy applies to all fully insured benefit plans across all Lines of Business in all Kaiser Permanente regions (unless prohibited or modified by local law or regulation).
  • You can also speak to an advice nurse 24/7 at Kaiser Permanente. Call the advice number on your Kaiser Permanente membership card to speak with an advice nurse or to schedule a telephone or video appointment with your doctor. You can also email your doctor for non-urgent concerns. If you can’t find your card, visit kp.org/getcare and click on 24/7 advice.
Per official guidance, we recommend that you use telemedicine, or Kaiser Permanente’s 24/7 advice nurse, as your first line of defense in order to limit potential exposure in physician offices.
Kaiser Permanente is also providing members with access to Calm, a meditation and sleep app, at no cost. Calm is available to adult members in all regions except for Kaiser Permanente Washington members. Registration to Calm must begin at kp.org/selfcareapps.

Get 24/7 advice through your Kaiser Permanente membership.

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As a UnitedHealthcare member, people have access to the following services:
To provide ongoing support to members and providers, UnitedHealthcare is extending many of the COVID-19 temporary program, process, and coverage changes for in-network care through Oct. 22, 2020.
Specifically, these temporary changes that apply through October 22, 2020 include:
  • COVID-19 Testing: $0 member cost-share for COVID-19 diagnostic testing (virus and antigen) and antibody testing when medically necessary, ordered by a physician or licensed health care professional and provided at approved locations.
  • COVID-19 Test-related visit/services: $0 member cost-share for COVID-19 testing-related visit and applicable services at health care providers office, urgent care center, emergency department, or through telehealth.
  • Ambulance: $0 cost-share for ground emergency and medically necessary non-emergency ambulance transportation for COVID-19 services.
Per official guidance, we recommend that you use telemedicine, or UnitedHealthcare’s 24/7 Virtual Visit capability (available through the UnitedHealthcare app), as your first line of defense in order to limit potential exposure in physician offices.
  • UnitedHealthcare will discontinue the upfront waiver of cost share for Virtual Visits through Teladoc®, Doctor On Demand™ and AmWell® as of October 1, 2020.
  • Beginning October 1, 2020, members will pay the cost share for both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 services up front.
  • The Virtual Visit cost share will revert to client specific pre-COVID cost share.
  • Non-COVID-19 Virtual Visit coverage at no cost share ends September 30, 2020.
  • UnitedHealthcare will reimburse members for Virtual Visit cost-share (copayment, deductible, and coinsurance) for COVID- 19 Virtual Visits through the public health emergency. No action is required to facilitate reimbursement to the member, the provider will be responsible for member reimbursement. Please note, the provider member reimbursement process may take up to 60 days.
As a Justworks member, you can also utilize One Medical’s virtual care with no co-pay, for your COVID-19 related concerns.

Access UHC's 24/7 Virtual Visit capability via the UHC app.

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The cost of COVID-19 testing will be covered in full by private insurance, regardless of your carrier, as mandated by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
If you are diagnosed with COVID-19 and require treatment, any associated healthcare services would be covered to the same extent as they are currently provided for in your insurance plan.
Employees seeking guidance on how their specific medical plan covers COVID-19 testing and/or possible treatment, or other matters involving their personal health information, should connect with Health Advocate at 866-799-2728.
When it comes to the fine print on testing and treatment, here’s what we know:
Federal Response:
  • On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. This new law requires private health plans to provide coverage for COVID-19 diagnostic testing, as well as the items and services furnished during a provider visit (office, telehealth, urgent care and emergency room) insofar as these are necessary to get tested. This coverage must be provided at no cost to the consumer.
  • The requirement to cover COVID-19 testing costs starts from the date of enactment, March 18, 2020, until the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) determines that the public health emergency has expired. The CARES Act, signed into law on March 26, 2020, extended similar provisions for vaccinations (once ultimately available.
Private Insurer Response:
  • Aetna: Waiving co-pays for all physician-ordered diagnostic testing related to COVID-19. CVS Health, the parent company of Aetna, announced on March 25 that it is also waiving cost-sharing and co-pays for inpatient hospital admissions related to COVID-19 for Aetna’s commercially insured members, part of several additional steps to help members access the care that they need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Kaiser Permanente: Cost-sharing (deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance) will be reduced to zero dollars ($0.00) for medically necessary screening and testing for COVID-19 including the visit, associated lab testing, and radiology services in a plan hospital, emergency or urgent care setting, or medical office. This cost sharing reduction will apply to all Kaiser Permanente and other plan (participating) providers. Kaiser Permanente’s National Benefit Policy was updated Friday, April 3, 2020 to now include waived member out-of-pocket costs for treatment related to a positive COVID-19 diagnosis. Members who are diagnosed with COVID-19 will not have to pay co-pays or other cost-share related to their medical care and treatment of COVID-19, even if they have to stay in the hospital.
  • UnitedHealthcare: Cost-sharing, including copays, coinsurance, and deductibles will be waived for COVID-19 diagnostic testing provided at approved locations in accordance with CDC guidelines for all commercial insured, Medicaid and Medicare members. UnitedHealthcare is also waiving member cost-sharing for the treatment of COVID-19 through May 31, 2020, for its fully insured Commercial, Medicare Advantage and Medicaid plans.
  • For high-deductible plans with a Health Savings Account (HSA), insurers are covering the COVID-19 test at no cost share prior to the member meeting their deductible. This should not impact HSA eligibility.
  • As the government and insurance carriers issue new guidance, we will update this page.

Utilize One Medical for digital screening, care over video chat, and help coordinating testing.

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Call your doctor. If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop symptoms, such as a fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice. Your doctor will be able to recommend a course of action that is right for your specific risk-factor circumstances.
Per official guidance, we recommend that you use telemedicine to contact your doctor in order to limit potential exposure in physician offices.
Telemedicine resources for Justworks members:
  • For Aetna members, cost-sharing is now waived for all video visits through the CVS MinuteClinic app, Aetna-covered Teladoc offerings, and in-network providers delivering synchronous virtual care (live video-conferencing).
  • As an Aetna or UnitedHealthcare member, people can also utilize One Medical’s virtual care and testing in major cities across the country with no co-pay, for your COVID-19 related concerns.
  • Kaiser Permanente members should call the advice number on your Kaiser Permanente membership card to speak with an advice nurse or to schedule a telephone or video appointment with their doctor. They can also email their doctor for non-urgent concerns. If someone can’t find their KP membership card, visit kp.org/getcare and click on “24/7 advice.”
For more information, we recommend reading the following posts from our friends at One Medical:
COVID-19 Testing at One Medical
I Tested Positive For COVID-19. Now What?
Your Guide To Self-Isolation And Quarantine

Learn about getting tested for COVID-19 through One Medical.

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Staying Healthy

Learn how to protect yourself and others from getting sick, as well as tips to manage anxiety and stress during the outbreak.
The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the coronavirus.
That’s why government officials are recommending that everyone practice social distancing measures at this time. The White House & CDC have issued official guidelines.
Even if you are young, or otherwise healthy, you are still at risk and your activities can increase the risk for others. It is critical that we all do our part to slow the spread of the coronavirus:
  • Work or engage in schooling from home whenever possible.
  • Avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people.
  • Avoid eating or drinking at bars, restaurants, and food courts—use drive-thru, pickup, or delivery options.
  • Avoid discretionary travel, shopping trips, and social visits.
  • Do not visit nursing homes or retirement or long-term care facilities unless to provide critical assistance.
  • Practice good hygiene by washing your hands, especially after touching any frequently used item or surface.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Sneeze or cough into a tissue, or the inside of your elbow.
  • Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.
Per CDC guidance, older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness. They should consult with their health care provider about additional steps they may be able to take to protect themselves.
For more information on what you and your team can do to stay healthy, we recommend the following resources from our friends at One Medical:

Review the official guidelines issued by the White House & CDC.

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People can—and often do—experience strong feelings of anxiety when it comes to developing health crises, especially when our normal routines have been upended as a result.
In the workplace, leading and creating a sense of physical and intellectual safety starts with making sure your team knows where to go to get trustworthy, up-to-date, and accurate information. Maintaining it requires that you also listen to people’s individual concerns and respond in kind.
Our friends at Shine have also collected some great resources to help you and your team navigate stress and anxiety from the coronavirus outbreak. Care for Your Coronavirus Anxiety.
Aetna’s employee assistance program, Resources For Living, is also offering support and resources to individuals and organizations who have been impacted by COVID-19, whether or not they have RFL included as part of their benefits.
Individuals and organizations who don’t have RFL can contact the service at 1-833-327-AETNA (1-833-327-2386). Employers may contact the specialized support line at 1-800-243-5240.
For individuals and organizations that don’t have RFL, measures include: In-the-moment phone support to help callers cope with the emotional impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Community resource referrals, including support services in the local area, and Management consultation to help organizations respond to the needs of their employees, even if they are not RFL customers.
Kaiser Permanente is also providing members with access to Calm, a meditation and sleep app, at no cost. Calm is available to adult members in all regions except for Kaiser Permanente Washington members. Registration to Calm must begin at kp.org/selfcareapps.
Below are some other resources the Justworks team has benefitted from. We hope that you, or someone you care about, will find comfort in them too.

Our customer Shine has created a great resource for managing anxiety and stress related to the COVID-19 outbreak.

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Remote Work Tips

Find helpful Work From Home resources from Justworks, ideas on how to support your team, and remote productivity tips.
We’re glad you asked! We’ve created a public, collaborative list of helpful links for anyone working (and living) from home and looking for great ideas and accessible resources for staying happy, healthy, and safe during this crazy time. Whether you’re home alone, working alongside a roommate, a spouse, or your kids — we’ve got something for you.
All new ideas are welcome, so please consider suggesting new resources or sections in the comments. Feel free to share this wide and far. We’re all in this together!

Stay happy, healthy, and safe with the Justworks guide to remote life resources.

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Today’s near-necessity to work from home has pushed remote operations into the spotlight. Even without that push, the rise of remote work and the trend of in-house and remote teams for many companies have led to employers finding new ways to manage and support remote employees.
Consider a few of these tactics when leading your remote team.

Shifting to remote work? Get practical tips for workers and employers.

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Establish consistency. Consider setting and socializing a cadence for when your team can expect updates from you. Follow through even if it’s just for a quick check-in. This can help to reduce the noise and create a degree of certainty around which business operations can continue more normally. As new information about COVID-19 becomes available, check trusted sources before acting on it.
Level set that the situation is fluid and will be for some time. You are likely making many decisions daily. One way you can help alleviate some of the associated stress is to make sure you communicate any changes in policy or planning and inform people about the reasoning behind these changes, too. As a rule of thumb, providing context for your decisions is especially important in times like these—and enhanced by the inability to interact face-to-face. Context helps to align your team and will enable people to respond more effectively to new and unexpected developments on their own down the line. (They will happen.)

Help your team stay informed about COVID-19 with trusted updates from Health Advocate.

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Many teams have made the move to remote work in the midst of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. If your team has made the switch to working from home, check out these tips and best practices to help your team stay productive, maintain trust, and keep the lines of communication open as your business shifts toward remote operations.
Bonus: Many of us now also find ourselves working at home alongside a partner or loved one for the first time. Try these tips for working from home with your partner. We've also written about cybersecurity in the midst of COVID-19 on our blog. Find out what to look out for to keep your valuable information safe during this time.

Make the most of your time with these WFH productivity tips.

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Employer Requirements

Find answers to important questions about running your business, how to address COVID-19, and navigate other business considerations. We're here to help, 24/7.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, you have an obligation as an employer to provide a safe workplace, free from known hazards.
In order to provide such a workplace, employers can take a page from the official OSHA recommendations. Precautions include promoting a healthy and sanitized workplace, educating employees on protective behaviors, like cough and sneeze etiquette and hand hygiene, and minimizing or eliminating in-person interaction between employees and/or with customers.
Employers should follow guidance from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to understand if additional workplace disclosures or protections apply.
Beyond any requirements, it’s a best practice to keep your employees updated. As we published on our blog, one of the most important things you can do is to communicate openly with your team about what’s happening.
Here are some other tips on how to keep your team safe and informed.
  • Provide Trusted Resources: Given the outbreak’s international nature, we suggest sharing both the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) resources as trusted references. In addition to providing your employees with resources, be human. Let people know that you’re up-to-speed and monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely.
  • Establish Consistency: Consider setting and socializing a cadence for when your team can expect updates from you. Follow through even if it’s just for a quick check-in. This can help to reduce the noise and create a degree of certainty around which business operations can continue more normally. As new information about COVID-19 becomes available, check trusted sources before acting on it.
  • Talk About Hygiene and Plan for Continuity: We also suggest that you review the CDC’s interim guidance for employers. It details proactive steps you can take, especially regarding sick employees. The CDC guidance for employers also provides business continuity planning considerations.
  • Explain Your Actions: Make sure you communicate any changes in policy or planning and inform people about the reasoning behind these changes too. As a rule of thumb, providing context for your decisions is especially important in times like these. It helps to align your team and will enable people to respond more effectively to new and unexpected developments on their own down the line.

Get more tips on how to communicate about the COVID-19 pandemic to your employees.

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As of March 16, 2020, the White House’s official guidance is for all people to work or engage in schooling from home whenever possible. If you haven’t done so already, you should assess or reassess which roles absolutely require the employee’s physical presence in order to perform the essential job functions of that role.
Some states have issued even stricter guidance and mandates in some cases. In New York, for example, beginning on March 22, 2020, Governor Cuomo mandated that 100% of the workforce must stay home, excluding essential services like Medical facilities, Pharmacies, Grocery & liquor stores, and Restaurants (take-out and delivery only).
The requirements impacting your office will continue to shift daily. As such, we recommend that you check your state’s website regularly for the most up to date guidance.
Per OSHA’s Hazard Recognition page, employers that remain open are required to assess the hazards to which their workers may be exposed; evaluate the risk of exposure; and select, implement, and ensure workers use controls to prevent exposure. Control measures may include a combination of engineering and administrative controls, safe work practices, and personal protective equipment.
  • If you choose to close your office, you should communicate to your employees as far in advance as possible.
  • Even if you see remote work as a last resort for your business, start requiring that your employees bring all necessary equipment home with them each night. The situation could evolve rapidly and new mandates, like a “shelter in place” order, could come into effect after business hours. Make sure your people are ready to go remote.
  • You should clearly outline whether “closing the office” means employees should cease working, or if it means they should begin working remotely.

Visit OSHA’s Hazard Recognition page to understand if special considerations apply to your business.

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If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Employees exposed to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should refer to CDC guidance for what to do. This resource is being updated regularly and is based on the latest available information.
If your office is still open, separate the sick employee. The CDC recommends that employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately.
Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify you or their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.

CDC's exposure response page is updated regularly, start here.

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We suggest that you review the CDC’s interim guidance for employers. It details proactive steps you can take now, especially regarding sick employees, as well as how you can tailor your approach as the situation unfolds.
OSHA’s existing guidance on continuity planning for a pandemic is also relevant to COVID-19.

Get OSHA's resource on continuity planning for a pandemic.

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If you haven't already, to ensure people’s safety, and based on the CDC’s guidance for travelers, we strongly suggest that you take steps to cancel or postpone all nonessential employee travel and promote alternatives like video meetings.

Review and follow CDC's guidance on travel.

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State and local government websites are being updated on a daily basis to introduce and clarify new emergency legislation that has been passed, and to highlight existing programs that will be helpful to workers during this time. You should check state and local sites as they apply to your business, and confer with legal counsel to determine how these may apply.
ThinkHR has also developed a COVID-19 Crisis Response Center with an extensive state and local resource directory. Resources on this page also include various communication and policy templates and an FAQ section.

ThinkHR has developed an extensive state and local resource directory.

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Business Loans & Relief

Get support and resources to tackle tough financial challenges, retaining employees, and navigate deferred taxes.
Under the CARES Act, a new business “Paycheck Protection Program” was created via a $349 billion lending facility modeled on the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) existing 7(a) program.
Under this new program, eligible small businesses can get a loan to cover costs incurred between February 15, 2020, and June 30, 2020. This window of time is referred to in other areas of the law, and below, as the “covered” period.
Proceeds can be used during the 8-week period after loan origination for payroll costs (including costs related to the continuation of group health care benefits, among other things), mortgage interest payments, rent, utilities, and interest on prior debt. Qualifying expenses may be eligible for forgiveness.

Get the full details of the Paycheck Protection Program and apply.

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Under the CARES Act, businesses that meet the SBA’s “small business concern” definition, as well as businesses with up to 500 employees, are eligible (subject to affiliation rules, which may include the employees of affiliated companies when determining whether a company is under an applicable employee threshold). Otherwise, for the purposes of this program, your total number of “employees” includes your full-time and part-time employees, in addition to individuals who work with you seasonally or on a temporary basis.
Using a PEO does not impact the way you count your total “employees” or your eligibility. 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations are also eligible for these loans.
Certain hospitality and foodservice companies, whose NAICS code begins with “72,” are afforded special considerations. For these businesses, if they have 500 or more total employees across multiple locations, they are eligible to look at each discrete physical location with under 500 employees and apply for a loan accordingly. This special consideration is not extended to other industries.
The loans will be issued via the SBA’s network of 7(a) program lenders and will be 100% guaranteed by the SBA. If you have available credit from other sources that does not disqualify you. 

You should review the SBA's affiliation rules, which may include the employees of your affiliated companies for the purposes of applying for a PPP loan.

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What is available: Under the CARES Act, the maximum amount you can borrow is 250% of your average monthly “payroll costs” (based on a 12-month look back), not to exceed $10 million.
“Payroll costs” include compensation paid to employees capped at $100,000 per year per individual (prorated over the “covered” period). Compensation above $100,000 per year (prorated over this same period) is excluded for the purposes of making this calculation. 
In addition to compensation, “payroll costs” can be interpreted according to the existing SBA definition. This means that your calculation in applying for a loan amount can also include cash tip equivalents, the cost of health benefits (including premiums), the cost of retirement benefits, the cost of leave (e.g., vacation, family, and sick leave), and the payment of state or local taxes assessed on employee compensation.
Fees: The loans will be issued via the SBA’s network of 7(a) program lenders and will be 100% guaranteed by the SBA. If you have available credit from other sources that does not disqualify you. There are no application fees or closing costs allowed and there is no collateral or personal guarantee required.
Loan terms: The CARES Act set the maximum interest rate lenders can charge at 4% and the maximum loan term at 10 years. However, the Treasury's interim final rules have since set the interest rate at 1% and the term at 2 years for all PPP loans. The first 6 months of payments (principal and interest) are automatically deferred. This deferral period can be extended up to a year.

See the interim final rules for the Paycheck Protection Program.

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On June 17, the SBA and U.S. Treasury posted a revised, borrower-friendly Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness application implementing the PPP Flexibility Act of 2020, signed into law by President Trump on June 5, 2020.
In addition to revising the full forgiveness application, SBA also published a new EZ version of the forgiveness application that applies to borrowers that:
  • Are self-employed and have no employees; OR
  • Did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%, and did not reduce the number or hours of their employees; OR
  • Experienced reductions in business activity as a result of health directives related to COVID-19, and did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%.
The EZ application requires fewer calculations and less documentation for eligible borrowers. Details regarding the applicability of these provisions are available in the instructions to the new EZ application form.
Both applications give borrowers the option of using the original 8-week covered period (if their loan was made before June 5, 2020) or an extended 24-week covered period. These changes intend to create in a more efficient process and make it easier for businesses to realize full forgiveness of their PPP loan.
When you're ready to apply for forgiveness of your Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan, you will need to use either the new Form 3508EZ application, if you qualify according to its instructions, or complete the full application, as directed, and submit it to your Lender.

On June 17, in addition to revising the full forgiveness application, SBA also published a new EZ version.

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Under the CARES Act, all lending institutions are approved by the SBA to issue these loans. As of April 2, 2020, the SBA has issued its interim final rules on the paycheck protection program. 
The SBA has also posted an application form for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans authorized by the CARES Act
When can I apply?  
Starting April 3, 2020, small businesses can apply for and receive loans to cover their payroll and other qualifying expenses.
Who can apply?
The application form indicates that the submission of all requested information is required to make a final determination on eligibility for financial assistance. We've also summarized the key eligibility requirements on our blog. Of course, each situation will be unique and you should ultimately consult the SBA's affiliation rules, as well as your tax professional and legal counsel. 
Where can I apply?
Your completed application form can be submitted to any SBA Participating Lender or FDIC-insured depository institution. You can find a list of the 100 most active SBA 7(a) lenders here. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. We suggest consulting with your existing bank first to confirm it is participating. Banks may lend to their pre-existing customers before new customers.
We recommend that you also monitor the Treasury Department’s CARES Act website and the SBA's PPP page directly, as they are adding information almost daily.
We built a new report in Justworks that makes it easy for customers to calculate their Average Monthly Payroll (AMP) and verify their loan amount to their lender. You can learn more about it in our help center.

Use this form to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program.

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Thi Paycheck Protection Program’s intent is for you to be able to keep your people on payroll. If you rehire employees that you previously laid off after February 15, 2020 and/or you restore the salary for those employees that may have seen a wage reduction, no later than June 30, 2020, any corresponding reduction in loan forgiveness can be avoided.
The CARES Act provides eligible small businesses with various tax relief opportunities. There are a few ways these programs can be applied to your business, subject to the varying eligibility requirements of each program.
Eligible employers cannot take advantage of both PPP loans and employee retention tax credits.
Per recent IRS guidelines, employers may defer Social Security taxes while they await for a decision from their lender as to the forgiveness of their PPP loans.
Based on changes under the PPP Flexibility Act of 2020, employers can now take advantage of Social Security tax deferral provision under section 2302 of the CARES Act through the end of 2020, regardless of whether they obtain a PPP loan or if they obtain forgiveness under a PPP loan.
Social Security tax deferral: This gives you the option to defer payment of the employer share of Social Security taxes for the period beginning on March 27, 2020 and ending before January 1, 2021. The deferred amounts would then be 50% due by December 31, 2021, and the remaining amount by December 31, 2022. Under the CARES Act, and in the eyes of the IRS, employers would retain sole liability for the eventual payment of these deferred taxes, regardless of whether they use a PEO/CPEO. Once an employer receives a final decision from their lender that their PPP loan is forgiven, they will become ineligible to continue deferring payment of Social Security taxes due after the date of the decision.
Employee Retention Credit: This is a fully refundable 50% tax credit applicable to the employer’s share of payroll taxes on wages up to $10,000 per employee. To be eligible, you must demonstrate that your operations were suspended because of an official government order related to COVID-19, or that your gross receipts declined by at least 50% compared to the same quarter in 2019. If you elect to receive these tax credits, you cannot seek a PPP loan or loan forgiveness.
Customers can take advantage of the Social Security Tax Deferral and the Employer Retention Tax Credit in Justworks.

Take advantage of tax relief under the CARES Act in Justworks.

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On March 17, 2020, the Treasury Secretary announced that businesses can defer up to $10 million of payments owed to the IRS, interest-free, for 90 days. You can find more details here.
States have also announced similar considerations on taxes owed. The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants is tracking state changes on its website.
This information is changing rapidly. We recommend that you check local sources for the most current information and consult your tax professional.

Visit the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants' page to track state-specific changes to taxes that owed.

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On March 12, 2020, the Small Business Association (SBA) also announced that it would implement new COVID-19 disaster relief lending.
  • SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.
  • These loans may be more flexible than those issued under CARES Act and can used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can't be paid because of the disaster's impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.
  • SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower's ability to repay.
  • To access these emergency loans, you should contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center directly. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.
  • There is an online application portal for EDIL loans here. These are NOT PPP loans.

Read more about SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loans and how they can help your business.

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State and Municipal Support:
States and cities are rapidly deploying resources and programs to assist businesses and workers impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Given the rapidly shifting guidance, we recommend that you check local sources for the latest in your state.
In New York City, for example, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on March 8 that the City will provide relief for small businesses across the City seeing a reduction in revenue because of COVID-19. You can get the latest details about these programs and apply here.

Check local sources for the latest program updates in your state. If your business is based in New York, get the details about the NYS programs and apply here.

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Tough times call for creative solutions. When your business is caught in a difficult staffing situation, what are your options? If you need guidance, reach out to your account manager and schedule time with one of our HR experts. On our blog, we’ve also explored different considerations employers should take into account.
For workers facing layoffs, furlough, or reduced hours as a result of COVID-19, we have assembled a hub of resources here.
Note: The Paycheck Protection Program’s intent is for you to be able to keep your people on payroll. If you rehire employees that you previously laid off after February 15, 2020 and/or you restore the salary for those employees that may have seen a wage reduction, no later than June 30, 2020, any corresponding reduction in loan forgiveness can be avoided.

COVID-19 has caused many business owners to face difficult decisions when it comes to staffing. In this post, we hope to help you understand some of your options.

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Filing for unemployment has become increasingly more common due to COVID-19. It’s important to act fast, and we've outlined the process on our blog.
In light of COVID-19, a new federal law was passed allowing states to extend unemployment benefits to self-employed and gig workers, and to provide an extra $600 per week as well as an additional 13 weeks of benefits. Some states have also waived their unemployment insurance program’s mandatory waiting period and relaxed some of the eligibility requirements.
Unemployment eligibility varies by state, however, the general requirements include: being out of work through no fault of your own (not terminated “for cause”), being able to work, and meeting your state’s requirements for minimum earnings or length of time worked.
To file for unemployment, former employees will need to file a claim with the unemployment insurance program of the state worked in at the time of termination. Generally, the state will request information including the dates and location of employment. It can typically take 2-3 weeks from the time of filing to receive your first unemployment check.
Visit the Department of Labor's Unemployment Benefits Finder for more information, and to find links for your state's unemployment program.

Visit the Department of Labor's Unemployment Benefits Finder for more information, and to find links for your state's unemployment program.

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Many of the government relief programs put in place for small businesses are also accessible to small non-profit organizations. For additional specifics, we suggest consulting the National Council of Non-profits' guide to COVID-19.

Get the National Council of Nonprofit's resources that nonprofits can use to respond to COVID-19.

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Paid & Unpaid Leave

Get the latest information COVID-19 paid and unpaid leave requirements, including H.R. 6201.
On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Among other provisions, it contains several paid leave provisions related to the coronavirus pandemic that employers should be aware of. These provisions went into effect on April 1, 2020.
  • It requires employers with fewer than 500 employees provide emergency family and medical leave, or up to 12 weeks (10 of which would be partially paid) of job-protected leave to employees who are unable to work or telework due to their child’s school or daycare closing.
  • It requires those same employers to provide full-time employees with 80 hours of emergency paid sick leave if they are unable to work or telework for specific qualifying reasons related to the coronavirus (with special rules for part-time employees).
  • It provides tax credits for required paid sick leave, paid family and medical leave and certain health plan expenses. The law also permits the Department of Labor to exempt small businesses with 50 or fewer employees if providing paid leave would put them out of business.
  • Our team has broken down H.R. 6201 and its implications in more detail here.
  • The Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) administers and enforces the new law’s paid leave requirements. These provisions will apply from the effective date through December 31, 2020. You should review the DOL’s guidelines for employers and employees, as well as their responses to frequently asked questions. You should also consult IRS guidance regarding the tax credit provisions of FFCRA.  Businesses should also consult their legal advisor if they have questions regarding their obligations under the FFCRA.

Schedule FFCRA leave and claim tax credits within Justworks.

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Yes! On April 1, 2020, we launched a new tool to help businesses manage FFCRA paid leave. Customers can now seamlessly schedule FFCRA leave and claim the applicable tax credits directly in the Justworks platform. More information on the tool and an explanation of how it works can be found in the Justworks help center.

Schedule FFCRA leave and claim tax credits within Justworks.

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The FFCRA temporarily requires covered employers (generally, companies with fewer than 500 employees), to provide eligible employees with two new forms of leave between April 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020:
  • Emergency paid sick leave (EPSL): roughly two weeks (80 hours for full-time employees or the number of hours a part-time employee typically works in a two-week period) for employees who are unable to work or telework due to certain qualifying reasons relating to their own COVID-19-related care or quarantine or to care for another.
  • Emergency family and medical leave (EFML): 12 weeks (first two are unpaid, the remainder are paid) for employees who are unable to work or telework due to the need to care for a child whose school is closed or care is unavailable for COVID-19-related reasons.
Employees may use EPSL or other available PTO during the two-week unpaid portion of EFML to avoid a gap in pay.
Keep in mind that the regulatory landscape around COVID-19 is fluid and may change quickly. The DOL and IRS are frequently adding to and tweaking their guidance regarding the FFCRA and CARES Act.
Additionally, some states, such as New York, have also passed COVID-19-specific paid leave laws and others are likely to follow. Justworks customers can read more on the New York law here. Employers should be mindful of existing paid and unpaid leave requirements under federal, state, and local law, and should consult with their attorney about how these laws interact.

Get the details on the New York law guaranteeing job protection and pay for New Yorkers who have been impacted by COVID-19.

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There are six qualifying reasons for eligible employees to utilize emergency paid sick leave (EPSL), and one qualifying reason for eligible employees to utilize emergency/extended family and medical leave (EFML). Employers can read more about the covered reasons on the federal Department of Labor’s (DOL) employer resource page.
Notably, per the DOL guidance, FFCRA leave is generally not available to employees who do not have work available to them due to a full or partial business closure due to COVID-19-related economic reasons or a government closure of non-essential businesses. According to the DOL, this circumstance generally does not meet the qualifying reason of being unable to work or telework because the employee is subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19. Other programs under the CARES Act may be available to your business to keep employees on payroll when they do not qualify for FFCRA leave.
To learn more about the eligibility requirements under the FFCRA and other considerations for employers regarding COVID-19, visit the DOL’s COVID-19 website, which includes FFCRA guidance for employers and employees, and answers to frequently asked questions about the FFCRA. Businesses should also consult their legal advisor if they have questions regarding their obligations under the FFCRA.

With our infographic, review the eligible reasons employees may take leave, per the FFCRA.

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Yes, any leave taken under the FFCRA for qualifying reasons is subject to pay caps:
  • $511 per day for EPSL taken by an employee for their own care.
  • The lesser of two-thirds the employees normal pay (or minimum wage if more) or $200 per day for EPSL or EFML for an employee taking FFCRA leave to care for another.
Employers can “top up” these amounts and provide additional pay to their employees, but cannot claim tax credits beyond the pay caps under the FFCRA.

Check out the Department of Labor's FFCRA FAQs to get answers to your COVID-19 paid leave questions.

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Generally, the FFCRA allows covered employers to claim certain employer payroll tax credits to cover wages and certain other expenses paid for leave that they were required to provide employees under the FFCRA. Employers can access these tax credits immediately by reducing their payroll tax deposits.
Importantly, employers cannot claim FFCRA tax credits unless the leave was required under the FFCRA, so it’s important that all employers understand the FFCRA’s requirements regarding covered employers, eligible employees, and qualifying reasons for taking FFCRA leave. Additionally, the IRS has issued specific guidance regarding the documentation employers must collect to substantiate their claim for FFCRA tax credits.
For more information on FFCRA tax credits, employers should review the IRS’s guidance and consult with their tax advisor or attorney.

Learn what documentation and other eligibility requirements are necessary for claiming FFCRA tax credits.

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Each situation is unique and you should ultimately consult legal counsel. Here are several factors to keep in mind:
  • Employers should allow employees to utilize sick leave, per their company policy and applicable federal, state, or local law.
  • Where employees do not qualify to use sick leave, employers may want to consider, where feasible, providing employees with more flexibility in using their own judgement to work from home.
  • Employees may be entitled to take time off under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or other similar state/local laws to attend to a) their own serious health condition or b) a family member’s serious health condition. (Note: Simply contracting the virus may not necessarily be a serious health condition.)
  • Employees with pre-existing health conditions that put them at heightened risk for contracting COVID-19 may need to be provided with accommodations (like time off, or remote work arrangements) if and when the disease poses a high risk of transmission in your area.
  • Employees may not be required to be paid if taking a leave of absence, and you should refer to your internal policies and legal counsel on how you should approach this.
States and cities are rapidly deploying resources and programs to assist businesses and workers impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Given the rapidly shifting guidance, we recommend that you check local sources for the latest in your state.
In New York, for example, the state has enacted new protections, effective immediately, for workers who have been quarantined as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, including job protection, paid and unpaid leave, and extensions of the state’s disability insurance and paid family leave programs. Justworks customers can read more on the New York law here.
Other states and cities are focusing their efforts in a similar manner and are looking to adjust existing laws or pass new ones, while some jurisdictions have already done so. San Francisco, for example, has, among other changes, extended their paid sick leave ordinance regulations to include additional covered reasons during this time.

Learn about H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and its implications.

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Note: This information is changing rapidly. We will update this page as we learn more.