Recently enacted legislation (SB 134, Chapter 571) provides an income tax credit to certain employers with less than 15 employees which provide paid sick and safe leave to their employees. The legislation is effective July 1, 2018.
As we previously reported, effective February 11, 2018, employers of 15 or more employees are required to provide paid sick and safe leave to their employees. Employers with less than 15 employees must at least provide unpaidsick and safe leave to their employees.
Small employers offering paid sick leave may take state income tax credit
Effective July 1, 2018, certain employers of less than 15 employees that provide paid sick and safe leave to their employees may apply for a refundable credit against Maryland state income tax. In order for the employer to be eligible for the tax credit, the employer must have provided paid sick and safe leave to a qualified employee who earns 250% or less of the annual federal poverty guidelines for a single-person household (According to the bill's analysis, in 2018, 250% of the annual federal poverty guidelines for a single-person household is $30,350.)
The credit is equal to the lesser of $500 for each qualified employee or the total amount of qualified employer benefits accrued by qualified employees. A business must apply for and receive a tax certificate from the Maryland Department of Commerce to claim the credit. The Department will within 45 days approve or deny all applications that qualify for the credit on a first-come, first-served basis. The Department may issue tax certificates not exceeding $5 million annually.
SB 134 takes effect July 1, 2018, and applies to tax year 2018 and beyond.
Excerpt from Earnst and Young Article dated 7-27-2018