CARES Act Benefits — Are You Eligible For Tax Credits? Answer 3 Questions To Find Out

Carl Rivera
3 min readFeb 16, 2022

No responsible business owner would walk away from thousands of dollars just waiting to be claimed.

You could be eligible for up to $26,000 per employee — and if you have several employees, that could quickly add up to a lot.

So how do you know if you’re eligible?

It’s easier than you think, just answer these quick questions:

  1. Did you operate a business in 2020 or 2021?

The ERTC program is available for wages paid between March 2020 and September 2021.

2. Do you have between 2 and 500 employees?

For 2020, employers must have less than 100 full-time employees on average to qualify.

In 2021 that number was increased, so employers with up to 500 full-time employees on average can qualify.

3. Did your business suffer financial losses due to the pandemic?

There are two ways you can be eligible due to financial losses.

The first is if your business was closed at any time, or temporarily suspended, due to a government measure limiting commerce, travel, or group meetings due to the pandemic.

The second is if you suffered a significant decline in gross receipts.

For 2020, that means a 50% decline in gross receipts for any quarter, compared to the same quarter in 2019.

In 2021 the requirement was changed to a 20% decline in gross receipts for any quarter, compared to the same quarter in 2019.

What About PPP Loans?

Many employers believe, incorrectly, that if they received a loan through the Paycheck Protection Program, they are no longer eligible for Employee Retention Tax Credits.

That was true when the ERTC program was first introduced, but the requirements were changed in 2021 with the passing of the Consolidated Appropriations Act.

Now employers can enroll in both programs, even if they already received a PPP loan before the rules were updated.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

How Much Can You Claim?

Like many other parts of the ERTC program, this changed in 2021, allowing you to claim more than you could originally.

In 2020 you could claim 50% of each employee’s wage — up to $5,000 per employee per quarter.

For 2021 that amount was increased to 70%, up to $7,000 per employee, per quarter.

What If You Already Filed?

It’s not a big deal, you can still claim your benefits from 2020, even if you already filed all your paperwork.

You can contact an ERTC specialist who can help you to make the changes, or fill out a 941-X form and use it to file an amendment.

Is It Complicated To File For Tax Credits?

It certainly can be, especially with all the changes that were made between 2020 and 2021.

Any time you’re dealing with government paperwor it’s incredibly important to make sure everything is accurate — dot your i’s and cross your t’s.

If you’re not an expert, it’s a good idea to talk to someone who is.

An ERTC specialist can get you pre-qualified and deal with all the paperwork, so you just have to answer a few questions and then wait for your check.

There are thousands of dollars just waiting for you to claim them — don’t leave them on the table!



Carl Rivera

“Everything you don’t know is something you can learn.”