2021 Employee Retention Credit (ERC) Guidance

Guidance on Employee Retention Credit
(First and Second Calendar Quarters of 2021)

Below you will find updated guidance from the IRS on the ERC (Employee Retention Credit). Additional information will be shared at a later date on how to deal with Q3 & Q4 as a result of the extension in the American Rescue Plan.
Employers can claim a refundable tax credit against the employer share of Social Security tax equal to 70% of the qualified wages they pay to employees after Dec. 31, 2020, through June 30, 2021.
  • Qualified wages are limited to $10,000 per employee per calendar quarter in 2021. Thus, the maximum employee retention credit available is $7,000 per employee per calendar quarter, for a total of $14,000 for the first two calendar quarters of 2021.
Employers can access the Employee Retention Credit for the 1st and 2nd calendar quarters of 2021 prior to filing their employment tax returns by reducing employment tax deposits.
  • Small employers (i.e., employers with an average of 500 or fewer full-time employees in 2019) may request advance payment of the credit (subject to certain limits) on Form 7200, Advance of Employer Credits Due to Covid-19, after reducing deposits. In 2021, advances are not available for employers larger than this. Further details on how to calculate and claim the employee retention credit for the first two calendar quarters of 2021 can be found in Notice 2021-23.
Under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, enacted March 11, 2021, the Employee Retention Credit is available to eligible employers for wages paid during the third and fourth quarters of 2021. The Department of the Treasury and the IRS will provide further guidance on the Employee Retention Credit available under the ARPA.

Updated Guidance Notice: click here

Thank you,

The Payville USA / Lift HCM Team