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Everything you need to know about BMD and the industry.

IRS Provides Guidance for Payroll Tax Deferrals and Credits

Delay of Payment of Payroll Taxes Penalty and Interest Relief

                Under the CARES Act, provision was made for the delay in the payment of the employer portion of the Social Security, Medicare, and Railroad Retirement taxes for wages accrued during the period beginning March 27, 2020 and ending December 31, 2020. Instead of being due on the regular due date for the employer to deposit the taxes, one-half of the employer portion of the taxes for that period would be due on December 31, 2021, and the remaining one-half on December 31, 2022. Employers and self- employed individuals are both eligible for this relief provided they have not had indebtedness forgiven under either Sections 1106 or 1109 of the CARES Act. 

                What was not addressed was the imposition of interest and penalty for failure to make timely deposits of payroll taxes. This was resolved in Notice 2020-22 which was released on March 31, 2020.  Provided the employer pays the amounts by the due dates (December 31, 2021 and December 31, 2022), no penalty or interest will be imposed. However, this does not relieve the employer of making timely deposit of all employee withheld taxes and filing the quarterly Form 941.  

Advance Payment of Employer Credits Due to COVID-19

                On March 31, 2020, the IRS also released Form 7200, Advance Payment of Employer Credits Due to COVID-19. This form allows employers (but not self-employed individuals) who are eligible for tax credits for qualified sick and qualified family leave wages as well as the employee retention credit to request an advance payment of the credits that they will claim on the Form 941, 943, 944 series or Form CT-1. 

                This form may be filed for an advance payment of any credits that an employer anticipates receiving before the end of the month following that quarter.  Simply put, you must file this Form before you file the appropriate quarterly tax reporting form that you normally file.  It is important to remember not to file to request an advance payment for any anticipated credits if you have already reduced your deposits for those amounts. Of particular note is that Form 72 MUST be fax filed to (855) 248-0552.

Date Clarification for Payments Eligible for Qualified Sick and Qualified Family Leave Under FFCRA

                The IRS has also released Notice 2020-21 which states that the official dates between which wages earned (not paid) during the period April 1, 2020, and December 1, 2020, are those which are eligible for the credit. It was further stated in the FAQs on the IRS website that it is the date they are earned or accrued and not the date that the actual payment is made which is key. Therefore, the actual payment may occur in January 2021, but still be an eligible amount. 

For questions, or more information, please contact BMD Tax Member Priscilla Grant at pag@bmdllc.com or 330.253.5934.

Explosive Growth in Pot of Gold Opportunity for Bank (and Other) Cannabis Lenders Driving Erosion of the Barriers

Our original article on bank lending to the cannabis industry anticipated that the convergence of interest between banks and the cannabis industry would draw more and larger banks to the industry. Banks were awash in liquidity with limited deployment options, while bankable cannabis businesses had rapidly growing needs for more and lower cost credit. Since then, the pot of gold opportunity for banks to lend into the cannabis industry has grown exponentially due to a combination of market constraints on equity causing a dramatic shift to debt and the ever-increasing capital needs of one of the country’s fastest growing industries. At the same time, hurdles to entry of new banks are being systematically cleared as the yellow brick road to the cannabis industry’s access to the financial markets is being paved, brick by brick, by the progressively increasing number and size of banks that are now entering the market.

2021 EEOC Charge Statistics: Retaliation & Impact of Remote Work

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released its detailed information on workplace discrimination charges it received in 2021. Unsurprisingly, for the second year in a row, the total number of charges decreased as COVID-19 either shut down workplaces or disconnected employees from each other. In 2021, the agency received a total of approximately 61,000 workplace discrimination charges - the fewest in 25 years by a wide margin. For reference, the agency received over 67,000 charges in 2020, and averaged almost 90,000 charges per year over the previous 10 years.

Ohio’s Managed Care Overhaul Delayed – New Implementation Timeline

At the direction of Governor Mike DeWine, the Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) launched the Medicaid Managed Care Procurement process in 2019. ODM’s stated vision for the procurement was to focus on people and not just the business of managed care. This is the first structural change to Ohio’s managed care system since the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) approval of Ohio’s Medicaid program in 2005. Initially, all of the new managed care programs were supposed to be implemented starting on July 1, 2022. However, ODM Director Maureen Corcoran recently confirmed that this date will be pushed back for several managed care-related programs.

Laboratory Specimen Collection Arrangements with Contract Hospitals - OIG Advisory Opinion 22-09

On April 28, 2022, the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) published an Advisory Opinion[1] in which it evaluated a proposed arrangement where a network of clinical laboratories (the “Requestor”) would compensate hospitals (each a “Contract Hospital”) for specimen collection, processing, and handling services (“Collection Services”) for laboratory tests furnished by the Requestor (the “Proposed Arrangement”). The OIG concluded that the Proposed Arrangement would generate prohibited remuneration under the federal Anti-Kickback Statute (“AKS”) if the requisite intent were present. This is due to both the possibility that the proposed per-patient-encounter fee would be used to induce or reward referrals to Requestor and the associated risk of improperly steering patients to Requestor.

Property Owner Protection from Tax Valuation Challenges

New legislation provides significant new protections for commercial property owners against challenges to valuation primarily by local school boards and prohibiting side agreements to avoid tax valuation changes. The Ohio Legislature has approved House Bill 126 which will go into effect July 2022 but will effectively apply to the 2023 tax valuation year.