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Credit Available NOW for Keeping Employees on Payroll

Employee Retention Credit

May 17, 2021

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have been lasting for many in Greater Des Moines (DSM), but none more so than small businesses. The Employee Retention Credit (ERC) can help! The Biden-Harris Administration ERC will deliver cash flow to your small business as soon as it’s claimed, and it can be claimed for every quarter of 2021. If you’ve kept employees on payroll, you can qualify for the credit — and the longer they’re on the payroll, the more benefits you qualify for as a business owner. The tax credit is 70% of the first $10,000 in wages per employee in each quarter of 2021, making the credit worth up to $7,000 per quarter and up to $28,000 per year for each employee.


To be eligible for the ERC, your business must have been fully or partially shut down due to a governmental order during any part of the quarter, the business’s gross receipts in a quarter must have declined more than 20% compared to the same quarter in 2019 or the immediately preceding quarter in 2020 or 2021. Your business must also have 500 or fewer employees.

Did you receive a PPP loan in 2020 or 2021? You can still claim the ERC! Consider the following if you wish to apply: wages used to apply for a PPP loan cannot be claimed for an ERC, but remaining wages (for the last two quarters of 2021) can be claimed for up to $50,000 per quarter if your business has less than $1 million in annual gross receipts.

Download the ERC flyer here.

Find more information at treasury.gov/coronavirus, including information on the Paid Leave Credit, Emergency Capital Investment Program and more.

The Greater Des Moines Partnership has also put together employment resources for those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic for both employers and employees. Learn more on the small business resources page and the employment resources page.

Count on the Greater Des Moines Partnership for economic recovery information and business and industry recommendations as the region moves forward from the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more about current impacts and future trends from the DSM Forward playbooks here.

Christina Moffatt

Christina Moffatt serves as director of small business resources at the Greater Des Moines Partnership. She most recently served as Regional Director for the Iowa Small Business Development Center (SBDC), overseeing Dallas, Polk, Jasper, Warren and Marion Counties. She is also the owner of the award-winning Crème Cupcake + Dessert, which she founded in 2010.