Articles & Alerts

NJ Relief for Businesses and Individuals During the COVID-19 Crisis

As the national conversation about COVID-19 relief continues to take center stage, New Jersey businesses, nonprofits, employees and residents should not overlook the relief and changes happening right here in the Garden State.

Treasury Clarifies PPP Loan Size and Eligibility Criteria

The Treasury released a new FAQ last night that clarifies certain areas of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) under Section 1102 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act

Additional $250B May Be Headed to the Paycheck Protection Program

Just days after small businesses began applying for Paycheck Protection Program loans, the Treasury and lawmakers are pushing for an additional $250 billion to be added to the $349 billion allocated to the program under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Foundations Activate Emergency Funds for COVID-19 Relief

Foundations across the country are activating funds and other resources to help nonprofits and the communities they serve recover from the impact of COVID-19. Grassi’s Grant Compliance professionals are monitoring opportunities in every state and helping organizations secure the funding they need to fulfill their missions during and after the pandemic.

FAQ: Understanding Business Loan Options under the Coronavirus Stimulus Package

Grassi's Emergency Loan Consultants are advising small business and nonprofits on their eligibility, options and strategies when applying for COVID-19 business loans available under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions our advisors are hearing and answering.

Beware of Scams Offering COVID-19 Relief

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to new scam tactics that prey on the fear and uncertainty of taxpayers and small businesses seeking relief. Many of the latest scams circulating by phone, email and text offer assistance with the Paycheck Protection Program loans or promise early delivery of the $1,200 IRS economic impact payments.

SBA Issues Additional Guidance on Paycheck Protection Program

The U.S. Small Business Administration released additional guidance on the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) last night, making significant modifications to the loan calculation and terms for businesses seeking relief from COVID-19 losses.

Private Nonprofits Eligible for FEMA Assistance in Wake of COVID-19 Losses

Private nonprofits that have sustained disaster losses as a result of COVID-19 may be eligible to apply for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) assistance. Before reaching out to your county emergency management office, review these guidelines and four-pronged test to determine your organization’s eligibility.

Small Business Loan Applications Now Available for Paycheck Protection Program

The U.S. Treasury Department released the Paycheck Protection Program application that allows eligible small businesses and nonprofits to apply for loans of up to $10 million each to recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Relief for Employee Benefits Plan Participants in COVID-19 Stimulus Act

Among the many relief provisions included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act are benefits that impact employee benefit plan participants specifically. Plan administrators should be aware of the relief available to their participants to fulfill their fiduciary duties during these challenging times.

Valuable Employer Deduction for Employee Disaster Relief Payments

On top of the tax relief included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, employers can receive additional tax savings under IRC Section 139 for disaster relief payments made to employees during times of crisis. This often overlooked section of the tax code extends to many COVID-19 reimbursable expenses, such as work-from-home, dependent care and medical expenses not covered by insurance.

Regulators Grant Limited Emergency Relief for Investment Advisers and Other Participants in U.S. Financial Markets

In the recent days of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the four primary regulators of U.S. financial markets have shied away from a blanket moratorium of regulatory filings and compliance activities. As a result, financial markets participants can avail themselves of these limited options.

Nonprofit Checklist for COVID-19 Response

As your nonprofit plans its response efforts to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on lost programming, canceled events and your workforce, David Rottkamp, Not-for-Profit Practice Leader, outlines the most important action items that your leadership team should be considering right now.

Employer Obligations under the New COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave and FMLA Benefits

On April 1, 2020, employers with less than 500 employees will be subject to the provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which includes the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (FMLA).

Business Loan Forgiveness Included in CARES Act

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes a $350 billion loan program for small businesses and nonprofits. What makes this relief even more significant is the possibility of tax-free loan forgiveness. Our Crisis Response & Recovery team outlines how you can qualify.

Non-Essential Construction Coming to a Halt in New York State

New York State’s “pause” will now be applied to non-essential construction as announced today by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

President Trump Signs Historic Coronavirus Economic Relief Bill

President Trump has signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act today after it was passed by the House earlier today. The Act includes a historic $2 trillion of aid for Americans and businesses in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Tax Woes Continue for Cannabis Industry

Like many issues in the emerging Cannabis industry, the taxation of the production, sale and distribution of state-legalized marijuana is complicated and burdensome on the cannabis business owner. Despite significant advances in state legalization last year, tax savings strategies will remain limited as long as cannabis is classified as a federally illegal schedule 1 substance.

Coronavirus Stimulus Bill Moves One Step Closer to Enactment

Overnight, the Senate unanimously passed an expanded version of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act that includes a historic $2 trillion of aid for Americans and businesses in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. The bill now moves on to the House, which is reported to be planning a vote for Friday morning. If approved, the legislation would then proceed to the President to be signed.

DOL Notice Required for Employers of 500 or Less

The Department of Labor (DOL) has published model notice WH1422 that is required to be posted by all employers with 500 employees or less. The notice outlines the expanded paid sick leave and Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) benefits available under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Coronavirus Will Cause a ‘Big Rethink’ in University Construction

Experts who spoke on Commercial Observer’s fourth annual Higher Education Construction forum, including Robert Brewer, Grassi's A&E Practice Leader, said the fallout from the global pandemic will lead universities around the country to evaluate how its spaces are designed and used even more than usual because of this.

States Announce Tax Filing and Payment Deadline Delays

In addition to the Treasury’s decision to defer federal tax filing and payment deadlines from April 15 to July 15, 2020, states are beginning to announce their own taxpayer relief for individual and business taxpayers.

NYC Nonprofits Eligible for Coronavirus Aid

The NYC COVID-19 Response & Impact Fund is now accepting applications from New York City-based nonprofits struggling with the health and economic effects of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act Proposes Significant Relief for Businesses and Individuals

The Senate is negotiating the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the third round of federal government COVID-19 aid. The proposed bill includes relief to help businesses, individuals and the economy recover from losses caused by the Coronavirus disaster.

Small Businesses Eligible for SBA Loans due to COVID-19

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are among the states that have been approved for “disaster status” by the SBA, opening the door for small businesses across the states to apply for Economic Industry Disaster Loans (EIDL) up to $2 million each. This status was determined by the level of inevitable economic injury these businesses will suffer as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

IRS Provides Additional Clarification on Tax Filing Deadline

The IRS has released Notice 2020-18, clarifying Treasury Secretary Mnuchin's announcement yesterday on the federal tax deadline delay.

IRS Delays Tax Filing Date to July 15

The Treasury Secretary confirms that the IRS will be extending the federal tax filing deadline from April 15, 2020 to July 15, 2020 at the direction of the President.

New York State Announces 100% Remote Workforce Mandate

Governor Andrew Cuomo announces that nonessential businesses must keep 100% of their workforce at home starting on Sunday, March 22.

Employers Facing More Coronavirus-Related Changes

As we all deal with disruptions to our everyday lives caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, employers are facing their own unique changes and challenges.

Transitioning to a Work-from-Home Workforce

With New York and other states mandating work-from-home arrangements in an effort to stop the spread of the Coronavirus, Grassi's HR Consulting practice provides tips for managing this transition effectively.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act Signed by President Trump

President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act shortly after it passed through the Senate on March 18, 2020.  The legislation, which goes into effect 15 days after enactment, contains significant temporary provisions that impact employers with 500 employees or less

NJ Small Businesses Eligible for Federal Aid to Cover COVID-19 Losses

Disaster Loans Available for NJ Small Businesses

New Jersey's small businesses are now eligible for SBA loans up to $2 million each to cover losses caused by the Coronavirus outbreak.

Employer Tax Credits Available in Coronavirus Response Bill

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act includes temporary modifications to  to all employers with 500 or fewer employees. However, it does include some relief for both small and mid-size business to offset the financial burden.

Structuring Your Family Office for Maximum Tax Benefit

Family Offices have long struggled with maximizing the deductibility of their asset management and operating expenses. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) eliminated the deductibility of investment, accounting, tax and similar advisory fees, which has exacerbated this issue.

Additional Changes to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act

Additional changes have been made to the proposed Families First Coronavirus Response Act as it makes its way to the Senate and possibly to the President’s desk this week. The new legislation proposes changes to the original bill that affects employers with 500 or fewer employees.

New Yorkers Receive Job Protection and Debt Assistance Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

This week, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a three-way agreement with the Legislature on a bill protecting New Yorkers’ jobs and pay during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. He also announced that the state will temporarily halt the collection of certain medical and student debt owed to the State and referred to the Office of the Attorney General.

Coronavirus Disruption: Will Losses be Covered by Insurance Policies?

As businesses continue to experience large financial losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for business owners to determine whether  insurance policies provide coverage for those losses. Insurance policies can provide coverage to protect for these types of losses, but the clauses and terms can be complicated to navigate.

Construction Industry Resources to Help Contractors Manage Coronavirus Risk

Planning is critical to address any risks deemed significant and potentially harmful to Construction organizations as they face the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19.

IRS Delays Tax Payment Deadline for Individuals and Businesses

The Treasury announced today that individuals and businesses will be allowed to defer their 2019 tax payments for up to 90 days in light of the disruption and losses caused by the Coronavirus outbreak. This moves the due date for payments from April 15 to July 15.

Changes to FMLA and Paid Sick Leave Proposed for COVID-19 Patients and Caregivers

Within the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which passed the House of Representatives on March 12, are significant provisions that impact mid-sized employers. The Act is now working its way through the Senate and, if approved, will be in effect 15 days thereafter and remain in place until the end of 2020.

PCAOB: Unloved by Administration and Congressional Republicans Alike

President Trump’s proposed 2021 budget includes a proposal to merge the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) into the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This marks the latest attempt by Republicans to loosen the PCAOB’s grip on the broker-dealer community. Our Financial Services professionals explain this latest development and what has led up it.

Millennials & Equity Ownership: A New Generation of Buyers in the A&E Market

For architecture and engineering firms in New York, succession planning is often complicated by the state mandate that requires either 100% of the ownership to be held by licensed design professionals or more than 75% ownership if the firm has applied to be a design professional corporation. This not only limits the types of third-party buyers A&E companies can entertain, such as private equity firms, but also limits the internal candidate pool of buyers for an internal sale.

Coronavirus Highlights Need for Businesses to Plan for Health Risks

Many business response plans and insurance policies do not cover business interruption caused by an epidemic. It may not seem a likely scenario in this age of advanced healthcare, but as the Coronavirus proves, risk assessments and business continuity plans should include regional health risks throughout the world.

IRS Announces New Focus on High-Income Non-Filers

High-income taxpayers with overdue tax filings or payments have a new reason to address these delinquencies. The IRS announced last week that it will be stepping up efforts nationwide to visit taxpayers who earn more than $100,000 annually and did not properly file prior-year tax returns.

New Jersey's Commuter Benefit Law Takes Effect on March 1

Last year, New Jersey became the first state to mandate employee transportation fringe benefits. Employers with as few as 20 employees are required to comply by March 1, 2020.

New York Tax Disaster for New Jersey Residents with NYC Pied-a-terre

A decision by the New York Division of Tax Appeals is the most recent example of New York's aggressive approach to proving statutory residency for taxpayers with secondary residences in New York City and the rest of the state.

Tax Savings Your Construction Company Might Have Missed

It's not too late for construction companies to save more on their 2019 tax returns. Construction Tax Partner, Joseph Molloy, explains some of the most commonly overlooked tax credits and incentives that are available to contracftors up until the day returns are filed.

Drive More Tax Savings to Your Construction Business with the Fuel Tax Credit

One of the lesser known tax credits in the Construction industry is the fuel credit, which offers eligible contractors a dollar-for-dollar deduction of their company’s tax obligation.

IRS Clarifies How to Claim Refund of Nonprofit Transportation Fringe Benefit Tax

Now that the 21% tax on nonprofits for employer-provided transportation fringe benefits has been repealed retroactively, the IRS has issued guidance on how organizations that paid the tax in 2017 and 2018 on Form 990-T can get these tax dollars back.

Kiddie Tax Reverts to More Favorable Rate

The SECURE Act, signed into law on December 20, 2019, had an impact on a wide range of taxpayers – from retirees all the way down to children.

Avoiding Unnecessary Contractor Risk and other Insights from the 2020 Construction Forecast

The construction industry has many risks that cannot be controlled, but many contractors are taking on more of it than necessary.  Construction Partners Michael Hochman and WIlliam Hughes explore the ways to mitigate the most common areas of contractor risk.

How Annual Trust Accountings Can Help Trustees Minimize Risk

It is in the best interest of trustees to take proactive measures to protect themselves against potential lawsuits and other liabilities. One of the most effective ways of accomplishing this is through annual trust accountings.

Tax Alert: Repeal of the Cadillac Tax and other ACA Changes

Among the many provisions included in the end-of-year federal budget bill were the eliminations of three excise taxes imposed in the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Tax Alert: NJ Softens the Blow of SALT Deduction Cap

Owners of New Jersey pass-through entities have a new way to get around the $10,000 cap on state and local tax (SALT) deductions imposed by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

Sign-up for Revenue Recognition Resources for the Construction Industry

Grassi has partnered with CICPAC to provide construction companies with the resources they need to experience a smooth and effective transition to the new Revenue Recognition standard.

Nonprofit Alert: Transportation Benefit Tax Repealed

Nonprofits received a long-awaited win in the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2019 that included the repeal of the 21% tax on nonprofits for employer-provided transportation fringe benefits.

Phantom Stock: A Real Solution to One of the Biggest Problems in the Construction Industry

As the current labor shortage continues, it is time for construction executives to think outside the box and consider new ways to attract and retain key people. One of those vehicles is the concept of phantom stock, a unique method to engage key personnel and to vest them in the long-term profitability and health of the construction company.

Tax Alert: 179D Deduction Extended for Energy-Efficient Buildings

The Energy-Efficient Commercial Building Deduction (179D) was extended through 2020 when the president signed the year-end government spending bill on December 20, 2019. This valuable tax deduction of up to $1.80 per square foot is achieved through the installation of energy-efficient HVAC, building envelope and lighting assets.

Year-End Charitable Giving Strategies

With only a few days left in 2019, keep these tax-savings strategies in mind when planning your last-minute charitable contributions.

SECURE Act Signed into Law to Help Taxpayers Save More for Retirement

Last week, Congress passed some of the most significant retirement legislation in more than a decade. The SECURE (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement) Act is designed to help Americans save more for retirement and to enable small employers to offer more retirement savings options.

IRS Delays Some New Partnership Tax Reporting Rules

S Corporations Not So Fortunate

The 2019 draft form 1065 imposed a heavy burden on partnerships to report additional partner-specific information. Recognizing that these changes would cause a hardship for most partnerships to adopt in their 2019 tax filings, the IRS is providing interim relief for partnerships, but not yet for S-Corporations.

Understanding the New Meal and Entertainment Expense Deduction

The M&E expense deduction changed dramatically with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Here's what you need to know about what meals and entertainment are still deductible and how your expenses can qualify.

IRS Issues Final Regulations on Increased Estate Tax Exemption

The IRS has issued final regulations that protect gifts made under the TCJA's increased estate tax exemption from being “clawed back” into a taxpayer’s estate after the provision expires.

Revenue Recognition Resources for the Construction Industry

Grassi has partnered with CICPAC to provide construction companies with the resources they need to experience a smooth and effective transition to the new Revenue Recognition standard.

Qualified Opportunity Zones: A Family Office Perspective

Principal Shashi Singal outlines the unique advantages, strategies and risks that a family office should keep in mind when considering an investment in a Qualified Opportunity Fund.

A Review of "A Report on the Current State of the NYC Construction Industry"

Construction Accounting and Taxation magazine pointed to Grassi's 2019 construction industry survey findings to give readers a clear picture of the direction in which the industry is going and how leaders are feeling about these emerging trends.

Is an ESOP the Right Succession Plan for Your Construction Company?

Construction Partner Steven Goldstein outlines a recent case study that demonstrates the benefits, strategies and risks that companies should understand when considering an Employee Stock Option Plan.

The Sleeping Bears Awake, Grumpy - Bad News for Cryptocurrency

Victoria Pellegrino and Roger Lorence of Grassi's Financial Services were published in HFMWeek for their insights into the new hurdles regulators are introducing for the management of cryptocurrency.

Panel: Lack of Guidance Means Cannabis Industry Tax Planning Often Depends on Clients' Risk Tolerance

John Pellitteri, Cannabis Practice Leader, was featured in The Trusted Professional for his contributions to the Foundation for Accounting Education's 2019 Cannabis Conference panel.

What Every New York Business Needs to Know about Cybersecurity

Crain's New York Business asks Carl Oliveri, Grassi's NYC market leader, about the cybersecurity challenges and opportunities that exist for NYC businesses looking to protect their sensitive data against the latest digital threats.

Grassi Ranked among 30 Largest Accounting Firms by Crain's New York

Grassi was named one of the 30 largest accounting firms in the New York City Area by Crain's New York Business.

Union Trends, Compliance and Cybersecurity Top-of-Mind for New York Contractors

Carl Oliveri, Construction Practice Leader, was published in Construction Executive magazine for his insights into the trends revealed by Grassi’s 2019 Construction Industry Survey.

NJBIZ Manufacturing Panel Explores Hiring, Succession and Legal Issues

Robert Grote, Partner and Manufacturing & Distribution Practice Leader, was featured in NJBIZ for his contributions to the publication’s manufacturing panel discussion on September 24, 2019.

Crain's Names Two Grassi & Co. Principals as Notable Women in Accounting and Consulting

Crain's New York Business has named Elizabeth Gousse Ballotte and Sareena Malik Sawhney to its 2019 Notable Women in Accounting and Consulting list.

Some Contractors Don’t Give Themselves Enough Credit

If you are a specialty contractor responsible for functions such as plumbing, HVAC, electric or sheet metal work, or if you are a contractor that performs value engineering, you may be able to take advantage of some often-overlooked tax incentives.

Alert: DOL Expands Retirement Plan Options for Smaller Businesses

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released a final rule which should make it easier for smaller businesses to provide retirement plans to their employees. According to the DOL, the rule will enable more small and midsize unrelated businesses to join forces in multiple employer plans (MEPs) that provide their employees a defined contribution plan such as a 401(k) plan or a SIMPLE IRA plan. Certain self-employed individuals also can participate in MEPs.

Warning to Americans Investing In Certain Canadian Cannabis Stocks That Have A U.S. Presence

You could be (up to) 33% worse off than compared with investing in U.S. stocks because of taxes! Learn the rules on minimizing the additional taxes before you invest.

Alert: Major News For Nonresident Real Estate Holders in the State of CT

In a ruling by the Department of Revenue Services for the State of Connecticut, new tax legislation was recently passed concerning nonresidents owning real estate in Connecticut.
 

CEO Athlete Toolkit to Soften the Blow of the TCJA of 2017

This past tax season was an especially demanding one as it was the first one under the new sweeping tax legislation, the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017,” which passed 12/22/2017—professional athletes and coaches felt its impact deeply.
 

Alert: IRS Removes Regulations on Advance Payments for Goods and Long-Term Contracts

On July 15, 2019, the IRS issued final regulations to remove existing regulations regarding advance payments for goods and long-term contracts. These final regulations apply for taxable years ending on or after July 15, 2019 and affect accrual method taxpayers who receive advance payments for goods, including those that may be inventoried.
 

Alert: The Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprise Program Extended!

On June 16, Governor Cuomo reauthorized the Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprises (MWBE) program, due to expire at the end of 2019, for five more years. The reauthorization of the law includes enhancements that will enable even more MWBEs to participate in and benefit from the program.     

Alert: The U.S. Supreme Court Ruled Today that States Cannot Tax Nonresident Trust Payments

Great news for Trusts and Trustees! The Supreme Court in North Carolina ruled today that the state violated the due process clause by taxing an out-of-state trust whose beneficiary was a NC resident— making that the only connection between the state and the trust.
 

Alert: IRS Wheels Out Additional Guidance on Company Cars

The IRS has updated the inflation-adjusted “luxury automobile” limits on certain deductions taxpayers can take for passenger automobiles — including light trucks and vans — used in their businesses. Revenue Procedure 2019-26 includes different limits for purchased automobiles that are and aren’t eligible for bonus first-year depreciation, as well as for leased automobiles.

IRS Updates Rules for Personal Use of Employer-Provided Vehicles

The IRS recently announced the inflation-adjusted maximum value of an employer-provided vehicle under the vehicle cents-per-mile rule and the fleet-average value rule. 

What a Contractor Should Know About the Gross Receipts Test

One of the positives that came out of The Tax Cuts and Job Act is the change in the small contractor’s exemption of Average Annual Gross Receipts (AAGR) test from $10,000,000 to $25,000,000. 

“Style Drift” a Big Problem for Fund Managers, Says SEC Investment Management Division (“SEC”)

It is standard practice for counsel drafting offering documents for investment funds, whether registered with the SEC or not, to describe the fund’s investment strategy.  Failure to describe the strategy would make the fund a type of “dark pool” (investing in a fund vehicle about which the investors are told nothing about what they are investing in).  

How Do Your Profits Erode?

While your inclination is to provide your best, there are certain types of customers who can literally drain your bottom line without you, or them, even realizing it.

Alert: Qualified Opportunity Zones - New Proposed Regulations

The second round of proposed regulations issued on April 17, 2019 provide additional guidance on some of the questions and issues that remained unclear after the initial round of proposed regulations that were issued in October 2018.

Alert: Change to New York State Estate Tax

On Friday April 12, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York Fiscal Year 2020 Budget.  This budget bill includes changes to the NYS Estate Tax Provisions.

Accounting Methods for Construction Contracts

Joseph Molloy, Principal of Tax Construction Services, explains the different accounting methods available for construction contracts and the unique tax benefits of each one.

View Articles & Alerts Archives