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What Utah Businesses Should Know About Employee Retention Tax Credits


The past year has caused a significant strain on the local economy, especially impacting local businesses. As a result of the pandemic, businesses have been eligible for many tax breaks to help them stay afloat during these trying times.

If your Utah business was hit hard over the last year, you might want to consider taking advantage of the employee retention tax credit. Established in March 2020 in the CARES Act, the employee retention tax credit has been expanded upon since the December relief package, and the American Rescue Plan Act signed in March 2021.

Why should your business take advantage of the employee retention tax credit? AA Tax & Accounting Services, LLC is ready to walk you through how your Utah-based business can gain substantial benefits by claiming this tax credit.

How the Employee Retention Tax Credit Works

When the employee retention credit was initially created as part of the CARES Act, it provided eligible businesses with refundable credits of 50% of up to $10,000 in qualified wages paid per employee in 2020. In summary, eligible businesses would receive a tax credit of up to $5,000 per employee last year.

Since then, some changes have been made to the employee retention tax credits to expand them even further — providing Utah businesses with even more tax breaks. In March 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act was signed into law, increasing the eligibility of businesses and adjusting the date that the credit needed to be claimed. The biggest adjustment to the employee retention credits is that eligible businesses cannot deduct up to 70% of up to $10,000 in qualified wages paid per employee per quarter in 2021. This means that eligible businesses would receive a potential annual tax credit of $28,000 per employee this year.

For businesses struggling to make ends meet, the employee retention tax credits provide a significant bonus.

Is My Utah Business Eligible?

Not all businesses are eligible to receive the employee retention tax credit — its purpose is to focus on businesses that were hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligibility for the 2020 employee retention credit is determined by if your business experiences a full or partial shutdown due to a government order limiting commerce, travel, or meetings, or if your business saw more than a 50% quarterly decline in gross receipts.

Because of the expanded parameters of the employee retention tax credit in 2021, business eligibility was also adjusted slightly. Eligibility was expanded to include businesses that underwent a full or partial shutdown or experienced more than a 20% quarterly decline in gross receipts.

Tax Consulting Services in Cedar City, Utah

Navigating business taxes is already an overwhelming process, and with the adjustments to the employee retention tax credits between 2020 and 2021, it’s even more confusing. Because of the complexity of the tax credits, we recommend consulting certified public accountants like AA Tax & Accounting Services for help making any decisions related to your business taxes.

From one-time tax consulting services to ongoing consulting services, our tax consultants work with many clients as their tax advisor and tax preparer — ensuring that your tax team understands your taxes backward and forwards. Our team has the experience to provide you with the most effective strategies for maximizing deductions and tax credits with our tax consulting services.

The AA Tax & Accounting Services team can help you execute the right tax strategies and determine if your Utah business is eligible for the employee retention tax credits. Contact us to schedule an appointment.

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435.267.0136
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