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Work-life Balance Considerations Post Coronavirus   

The coronavirus pandemic has sparked one of the largest social experiments in history. Virtually overnight, businesses across the world have been forced to rethink how they operate. Decisions made during this uncertain period will resonate for years and may serve as the base for a new, remote lifestyle post-coronavirus. Employee work-life balance is especially important for employers to consider—namely, how old standards play into new working arrangements and how employers can help relieve potential employee burdens. Old Standards, New Problems The classic, white-collar 9-to-5 work shift has been around for decades—an employee works their eight hours a day, then goes home. This standard...

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May 22 – Client Call

Mark Jones is joined by Brian Taylor and John Lester of Atlantic Union Bank to discuss PPP loans and loan forgiveness. Brian, a Business Banking Market Manager, and John, a Commercial Banking Relationship Manager work closely with bank manager and retail leadership to support business owners. Together Mark, Brian and John shed light on what we know today of the PPP and expectations for the loan forgiveness process. View the playback here....

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May 15th Client Call – Financial and Legal Perspective as Virginia Returns to Work

SIMA founder and CEO Mark Jones was joined by John Selbach, Esq. and Betsy Davis, Esq., both of Whiteford, Taylor, & Preston to discuss employer impacts as Virginia looks toward returning to work.  If you missed it, be sure to catch the replay here.  John, Betsy and Mark all welcome your questions as they enable their teams to know how best to research issues facing businesses and employers.  Please don't hesitate to send them to  Kerri will compile all questions for the team. SIMA is grateful for the partnership Whiteford, Taylor & Preston have provided as we grapple with the consequences of...

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Mid-Year Elections Permitted to Change Health Plan Enrollment or FSA Contributions

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the IRS has relaxed the irrevocable election rule and strict list of permitted election change events normally accompanying a Section 125 plan, which are required when a group takes employee pretax contributions for health care or provides an employee cash option.  The new guidance allows employees to make five additional prospective mid-year election changes during the 2020 calendar year. 1.    Mid-Year Health Plan Enrollment for Waived Employees Employers may amend their Section 125 cafeteria plan to allow employees who originally waived health plan coverage to make a new election, in calendar year 2020, for employer-sponsored health...

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Repayment Extension Granted by the SBA

Question: FAQ #31 reminded borrowers to review carefully the required certification on the Borrower Application Form that “[c]urrent economic uncertainty makes this loan request necessary to support the ongoing operations of the Applicant.” SBA guidance and regulations provide that any borrower who applied for a PPP loan prior to April 24, 2020 and repays the loan in full by May 7, 2020 will be deemed by SBA to have made the required certification in good faith. Is it possible for a borrower to obtain an extension of the May 7, 2020 repayment date? Answer: SBA is extending the repayment date for...

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Coping with Market Volatility: Understand How Your Biases Can Affect Investment Decisions

When it comes to your finances, "go with your gut" might not be the wisest adage to follow. In fact, it may work against you, particularly in periods of market turbulence. Before jumping to conclusions about your finances, consider what biases may be at work beneath your conscious radar. Recency bias refers to the tendency for recent events to have a stronger influence on your decisions than more distant events. For example, when the market was in the midst of an 11-year bull run, you may have increased your investments in equities, hoping to take advantage of any further gains. By...

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Market Update from Ashley Vice, CFA, CFP(r)

Last quarter was unprecedented in many ways. Global economic activity basically stopped as the world sought to slow COVID-19 infections and protect the health care system by ‘flattening the curve’. The efforts seem to be working, with strong evidence that the worst of the contagion has passed. Virus-induced deaths will likely turn out to be orders of magnitude less than initially predicted. We’re all thankful for that. I won’t spend much time discussing the virus since the updates come so rapidly. Nor will I expound on the fiscal responses, other than to say that they have been large and necessary, and...

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CARES Act: Retirement Plan Relief Provisions

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on March 27, 2020. This $2 trillion emergency relief package represents a bipartisan effort to assist both individuals and businesses in the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and accompanying economic crisis. The CARES Act provisions for retirement plan relief for individuals under federal tax law are discussed here. For those seeking access to their retirement funds, these include special provisions for coronavirus-related distributions and loans. For those seeking to preserve their retirement funds, certain required minimum distributions from retirement funds have been suspended. Coronavirus-related distributions A 10% penalty tax generally applies to...

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