COVID-19-Related Tax Credits: Determining the Amount of the Tax Credit for Qualified Family Leave Wages FAQs

 

This FAQ is not included in the Internal Revenue Bulletin, and therefore may not be relied upon as legal authority. This means that the information cannot be used to support a legal argument in a court case.

25. What is included in “qualified family leave wages”?

Qualified family leave wages are wages (as defined in section 3121(a) of the Internal Revenue Code for social security and Medicare tax purposes) that Eligible Employers must pay eligible employees for periods of leave during which they are unable to work or telework due to a need for leave to care for a child of such employee if the child’s school or place of care has been closed, or because the child care provider of the child is unavailable, due to COVID-19 related reasons. The first ten days for which an employee takes leave for this reason may be unpaid. However, during that 10-day period, an employee may be entitled to receive qualified sick leave wages as provided under the ESPLA or may receive other forms of paid leave, such as accrued sick leave, annual leave, or other paid time off under the Eligible Employer’s policy. After an employee takes leave for ten days, the Eligible Employer must provide the employee with qualified family leave wages for up to ten weeks.

For more information, see the Department of Labor's Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Questions and Answers.

26. How much credit may an Eligible Employer receive for qualified family leave wages?

An Eligible Employer may claim a fully refundable tax credit equal to 100 percent of the qualified family leave wages (and allocable qualified health plan expenses and the Eligible Employer’s share of Medicare tax on the qualified family leave wages) it pays.

For more information about how to determine the amount of family leave wages for which an Eligible Employer may receive credit, see How does an Eligible Employer determine the amounts of the qualified family leave wages it is required to pay?

27. How does an Eligible Employer determine the amounts of the qualified family leave wages it is required to pay?

The Eligible Employer is required to pay the employee qualified family leave wages in an amount equal to at least two-thirds of the employee’s regular rate of pay, multiplied by the number of hours the employee otherwise would have been scheduled to work, not to exceed $200 per day and $10,000 in the aggregate for the calendar year.

28. What is the rate of pay for qualified family leave wages?

An Eligible Employer must pay qualified family leave wages for up to ten weeks at a rate that is 2/3 of the employee’s regular rate of pay (as determined under section 7(e) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938).

29. Are amounts other than qualified family leave wages included in the tax credit for required paid family leave?

Yes. The credit also includes the amount of the Eligible Employer’s share of Medicare tax imposed on the qualified family leave wages and any qualified health plan expenses allocable to those wages. Qualified health plan expenses are amounts paid or incurred by the Eligible Employer to provide and maintain a group health plan to the extent that the amounts are excluded from the employee’s gross income under section 106(a) of the Internal Revenue Code. The qualified family leave wages are not subject to the employer portion of social security tax.

Note: The credit for the employer’s share of Medicare tax does not apply to Eligible Employers that are subject to Railroad Retirement Tax Act (RRTA) because qualified family leave wages are not subject to Medicare tax under RRTA.

For more information about the additions to the tax credit for allocable qualified health plan expenses, see Determining the Amount of Allocable Qualified Health Plan Expenses.

For more information about determining the Eligible Employer’s share of Medicare tax, see What is the Eligible Employer’s share of Medicare tax on qualified leave wages?

30. Is a similar tax credit available to self-employed individuals?

Yes. The FFCRA also provides a comparable credit for self-employed individuals carrying on any trade or business within the meaning of section 1402 of the Internal Revenue Code if the self-employed individual would be entitled to receive paid leave under the Expanded FMLA if the individual were an employee of an employer (other than him or herself).

For more information, Specific Provisions Related to Self-Employed Individuals.

 

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