President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) into law on March 11, 2021. Along with providing financial relief for individuals, state and local governments, schools, businesses and for other purposes, the law contains the following measures of special interest to employers and their employees:

  • A subsidy for COBRA premiums, funded through employer tax credits (Highlights of the COBRA provisions can be found here »)
  • Extension of employer tax credits for FFCRA employee leave voluntarily provided through Sept. 30, 2021
  • Expansion of employee earnings eligible for the FFCRA tax credit
  • Inclusion of testing and immunization as reasons for FFCRA leave
  • Extension of $300 increase in weekly unemployment benefits
  • Extension of weekly unemployment benefits for workers who otherwise wouldn’t qualify for these benefits
  • Expansion of subsidy for ACA premiums
  • Increase in Dependent Care Assistance Program (DCAP) contribution limits
  • Extension and expansion of the employee retention tax credit

Action Steps for Employers

Employers should review the ARPA’s provisions to identify any requirements and opportunities that apply to them. Employers are also advised to watch for official guidance on the implementation of the law.

For more information read the full compliance bulletin linked below. You can also read an in-depth analysis of the benefits-related provisions in the ARPA here ».

If you have questions related to this update, please contact your North Risk Partners advisor. Don’t have an advisor? No problem. We’ll help you find one.

This regulatory update is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel for legal advice.