The Illinois Business & Tax Law Blog

The Illinois Business and Tax Law Blog is maintained by attorney David Lynam of Lynam & Associates.

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On March 25, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division published workplace posters that small and midsize employers can use to fulfill their obligations to notify employees of their rights to expanded paid sick leave and expanded paid Family and Medical Leave Act leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). A notice is to be posted in each workplace or emailed to all workers. Here is the link for the private sector poster:  https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/WHD/posters/FFCRA_Poster_WH1422_Non-Federal.pdf. Here is the link for U.S. DOL Q & A on the new poster/Notice requirements: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-poster-questions. Should you need assistance…
Among the paid-leave requirements under the FFCRA: Eligible employers must provide two weeks (up to 80 hours) of paid sick leave at 100 percent of an employee’s pay if the employee is unable to work because he or she is quarantined or experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis. Eligible employers must provide two weeks (up to 80 hours) of paid sick leave at two-thirds of an employee’s pay if he or she is unable to work because of a need to care for someone subject to quarantine, if he or she must be absent to care…
Please note that U.S. DOL has established that the effective date of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act is now Wednesday, 4/1/20. Here is the text of the U.S. DOL guidance: DEFINITIONS “Paid sick leave” – means paid leave under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act. “Expanded family and medical leave” – means paid leave under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act. QUESTIONS & ANSWERS What is the effective date of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which includes the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act? The FFCRA’s paid leave provisions are…
On March 18, 2020, The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201) became law, effective on April 2nd, 2020. While this act has extensive provisions in response to COVID-19, the following areas are important for employers to note: EXPANDED FMLA What is expanded? The Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act amends the current Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), allowing leave for eligible employees who can’t work (or telework) because their minor child’s school or childcare service is closed due to a COVID-19 emergency declared by a federal, state or local authority. Who is eligible? Eligible employees include employees…
As of Wednesday, March 18th, Illinois has been declared eligible for the SBA’s federal emergency loan program, through which the SBA is directly making funds available to eligible small businesses who do not have existing access to working capital in order to help ease the economic impact of the Coronavirus. Based on the currently available SBA information, here is how the process works: Any such Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance declaration issued by the SBA makes loans available statewide to small businesses and private, non-profit organizations to help alleviate economic injury caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). This will apply to…
We are in the midst of unprecedented events, and I am writing to apprise you of the actions we are taking to serve and protect our clients. While news pertaining to the coronavirus continues to evolve rapidly, we continue to serve our clients from our offices in Chicago and Barrington. Connecting virtually We continue to be here to serve our clients and colleagues. If you wish to meet with us via video conference, we have the capability to do so via Ringcentral, which provides an application for your use to establish a videoconferencing link with us. Helping you prepare for an in-person…
The U.S. House just passed a revised version of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act with approval from the White House.   “Division C – Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act” “Division E – Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act” “Division G – Tax Credits for Paid Sick and Paid Family Medical Leave”  The Senate has yet to act on the bill, but action may come quickly. Emergency FMLA  Business coverage: Private-sector businesses with 500 or more employees are not covered, because emergency FMLA (and paid sick leave) covers only government employers and companies with fewer than 500 employees. Exemptions may be available to…
As our firm heads into year 2020, we take a moment to reflect on our clients’ and our  successes of 2019. Local Illinois craft brewer opens new location in Lockport, Illinois, eyes Chicago location. Tangled Roots Brewing Company, an Illinois craft brewery startup and one of Lynam and Associates newest clients, is expanding its operations with our assistance with the addition of a new brewpub location in Lockport, Illinois and through the launch of its app-based “Brew Club.” Currently in the negotiation stages of opening yet another location in Chicago, Lynam & Associates has been proud to be involved in…
Did you know you can use your IRA funds to purchase investments closer to home without the need to go through a broker or investment advisor? Most people don’t. Experienced in this area, we help clients facilitate these complex transactions, ensuring compliance with the various laws and regulations governing tax deferred retirement programs.   What is a Self-Directed IRA? A self-directed IRA is not a unique type of IRA. The term self-directed simply refers to the way the account is administrated and the greater choice of investment options available to the account owner. Unlike more conventional retirement accounts, self-directed IRAs…
Workplace violence is one of the primary causes of all homicide incidents in the U.S., and the devastation after a violent incident in the workplace is costly to persons and the entities exposed to this type of violence. The business impact of workplace violence can result in low employee morale, loss of productivity, worker’s compensation claims, expensive litigation, and permanent damage to a business’s reputation. On average, the annual cost of workplace violence to American businesses is estimated to be over $120 billion. Workplace violence has the potential to involve gun violence and it is an unfortunate reality that workplace…
Owning a home can be a long-term proposition, so it is not a surprise that older Americans are more likely than their younger peers to have paid off their mortgages. On average, 36% of owner occupied housing units in the United States do not have a mortgage, and for homeowners who are 65 and older, the rate is more than 65%. Even if you still have mortgage payments, the equity in your home is a valuable asset. If you are happy with your home and don’t need to tap the equity, living free of a monthly mortgage could make a big difference…
You are cordially invited to a presentation at The Union League Club of Chicago on the day after Labor Day -May 28th, 2019 at 6PM- on the Power of Micro Finance Entrepreneurship. Micro-Finance lending is changing lives and empowering entrepreneurs in Developing Countries like never before. We will feature a presentation on micro-finance by Jeffrey L. Hartman.  Jeff is a long-time entrepreneur and recently retired from his latest start up. To become President of the CareLink Foundation, (CareLinkFoundation.org) a non-profit that provides micro-finance capital to entrepreneurs in Honduras.  Jeff will provide information on how micro-finance works, the impact it is having…
The DOL has issued its much-anticipated proposed rule on white-collar overtime exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA). This rule replaces the prior Obama-era rule that has been enjoined by a federal court judge since 2016. The DOL’s proposed rule increases the annual salary threshold employees must meet to qualify as “exempt” from $23,660 to $35,308. In comparison, the Obama administration’s rule had increased the threshold from $23,660 to $47,476. The newly proposed rule’s preamble states that the threshold should be increased every four years, though unlike the Obama Administration rule that included an automatic adjustment mechanism,…
The Illinois Biometric Privacy Act (BIPA) requires all Illinois companies to notify and obtain consent when collecting biometric information. In a new BIPA case, the Illinois Appellate Court found that employees of the Four Seasons Hotel in Chicago who had brought a class action suit against the hotel were not required to pursue arbitration as sought by the Four Seasons. The arbitration clause signed by each employee required that “wage and hour” violations were to be decided by an arbitrator, and not in court. Each BIPA violation (which can be multiple times a day) subjects an employer to $1000 for negligent violations, or…
The beneficiary form could pose a serious danger to your financial and estate plan because its importance is frequently overlooked. Unless the estate is the beneficiary, a result which is not recommended as it results in all of the IRA being subject to income tax at the death of the IRA owner, the IRA will not pass through a client’s will. Instead, it will pass through the direction in the beneficiary form. The beneficiary of an IRA is entitled to a use an extended withdrawal period for minimum distributions from the IRA which is typically the lifetime of the beneficiary.…