What You Need to Know About New and Evolving Programs in NYC

Things are changing rapidly in light of the COVID-19 pandemic that is sweeping the globe. The Drucker & Mattia team is committed to serving our clients throughout this hectic time, as well as to providing NYC business owners and families important information that may be relevant to them. In today’s blog posts, we’re looking at a few different programs that the City and State are rolling out to provide relief for New Yorkers. We will also answer some common questions we’ve been fielding as a result of the current crisis.  

Zero-Interest Loans for Small Businesses

If you operate a business with less than 100 employees and have seen a sales decrease of 25% or more as a result of COVID-19, you will be eligible for a zero interest loan of up to $75,000 to help mitigate your profit losses. If you are interested in this program, you can call 311 for assistance, and as always, our team is here to help.

Payroll Grants for Small Businesses

If you operate a business with fewer than 5 employees, the City is offering payroll grants. These cover 40% of payroll costs for two months (an average of $6,000) to help retain employees. Once again, if this applies to you, and you are interested, call 311 for assistance.  You can also sign up at on.nyc.gov/COVID19Biz to get more information as it becomes available.

What if I get sick or one of my employees gets sick?

Under the NYC Paid Safe and Sick Leave Law, employers with five or more employees who work more than 80 hours per calendar year in New York City are required to provide paid safe and sick leave to employees. This is important to keep in mind, especially now! Employers with fewer than five employees must provide unpaid safe and sick leave. Covered employees have the right to use safe and sick leave for their own care and treatment or that of a family member. Employers and employees can visit nyc.gov/sbs or call 311 (212-NEW-YORK outside NYC) for more information. 

In this unprecedented time, what if I’m forced to consider laying off employees?

In response to the current emergency, Governor Cuomo has passed the Emergency COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave Law.  Details on the program can be found by visiting https://www.governor.ny.gov/paid-sick-leave-covid-19-impacted-new-yorkers/emergency-covid-19-paid-sick-leave, however, some highlights are included below.

To address the immediate need of those employees affected by COVID-19 who are subject to mandatory or precautionary orders of quarantine or isolation, the new law provides the following:

Employers with 10 or fewer employees and a net income less than $1 million will provide their workers:

  • Job protection for the duration of the quarantine order
  • Guaranteed access to Paid Family Leave and disability benefits (short-term disability) for the period of quarantine including wage replacement for their salaries up to $150,000. 

Employers with 11-99 employees and employers with 10 or fewer employees and a net income greater than $1 million will provide their workers:

  • At least 5 days of paid sick leave
  • Job protection for the duration of the quarantine order
  • Guaranteed access to Paid Family Leave and disability benefits (short-term disability) for the period of quarantine including wage replacement for their salaries up to $150,000. 

Employers with 100 or more employees, as well as all public employers (regardless of number of employees), will provide their workers:

  • At least 14 days of paid sick leave
  • Guaranteed job protection for the duration of the quarantine order

The provisions of the quarantine legislation took effect immediately upon the Governor’s signature, ensuring that New York workers are able to take advantage of these benefits now.

If you are quarantined but are working from home you do not qualify for these benefits.

If an employer is closed due to COVID-19 or a quarantine order, employees may immediately apply for Unemployment Insurance.

Who can help me navigate these issues?

Now as always, our team at Drucker & Mattia is here to help you with all business law needs. We can also help you with other matters facing New Yorkers including real estate law, family law, and estate planning. Like all New York businesses, we are adjusting to these new circumstances and finding ways to meet with clients virtually, so don’t hesitate to contact us for guidance.  Although it may have to be at a distance for now, we are still here for you. 

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Drucker & Mattia PLLC

When you’re facing legal issues or pursuing a lawsuit, skilled legal counsel makes a big difference. At Drucker & Mattia, PLLC, we specialize in a wide range of legal areas to meet the needs of a diverse client base.

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