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Tell your boss about the vax tax credit. Then take some time off to get a shot

Small and midsize businesses are eligible for tax credits if they give employees paid time off to get the COVID-19 vaccine and recuperate from any side effects.

Tell your boss about the vax tax credit. Then take some time off to get a shot
[Photo: filo/iStock; rawpixel]
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Now you can get the poke without feeling the pinch.

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Some small and midsize businesses are eligible for tax credits if they give their employees paid time off to get the COVID-19 vaccine and recuperate from any side effects from the shots.

The initiative, part of the American Rescue Plan Act, makes this offer to businesses and tax-exempt organizations with fewer than 500 workers, in addition to some government employers. Self-employed people are eligible for similar credits.

What’s on the table is PTO (aka sick and family leave) between April 1 and September 30.

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“The paid leave credits under the ARP are tax credits against the employer’s share of the Medicare tax,” the Internal Revenue Service explains. “The tax credits are refundable, which means that the employer is entitled to payment of the full amount of the credits if it exceeds the employer’s share of the Medicare tax.”

Here’s the basic breakdown:

  • Paid sick leave wages: Up to two weeks, not more than $511 a day and $5,110 in the aggregate at 100% of the employee’s regular rate of pay.
  • Paid family leave wages: Up to two weeks, not more than $200 per day and $12,000 in the aggregate at two-thirds of the employee’s regular rate of pay.

Vaccination rates in the U.S. have slowed down. To date, close to 141 million people have received one dose, representing 42.5% of the population, and just under 96 million people, or about 29%, are fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s most recent data.