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Latest on PPP Forgiveness

12/01/2020 2:17:14 PM

Recently the IRS solidified its position that expenses paid with PPP funds would not be deductible if you expect forgiveness on the loan. And we hadn’t heard any chatter from congress in months on this issue. We concluded that hope was fading on the issue. The same was true for PPP forgiveness applications. Many months ago there was optimism that loans under $150K would be easily forgiven under a streamlined process. Then the process was eased for PPP loans under $50K, and hope began to fade for loans between $50K and $150K.  

BUT all hope is not lost yet! At approximately 10:30 am, a bipartisan, bicameral group of Senators and Congressmen held a press conference to roll out a framework/outline for COVID emergency relief legislation.  

Will PPP expenses be deductible? Will the PPP forgiveness process for loans under $150K be simplified? It is still VERY uncertain how these 2 issues will ultimately conclude. But at least there are conversations taking place again. The intention is for something to be passed before the end of the year. Below is a chart of items being discussed for the current bill.  

 

Beyond Bitewings – 2020 Tax Planning

It’s hard to imagine, but 2020 is already almost over, which means it’s time to start making sure your dental practice tax planning is tied up for 2020.

Many dental offices are finding themselves with more cash in the books, and they’re wondering what they should do with it. Plus, everyone is trying to understand the guidelines for the loans, grants, and unemployment paid during the shutdown. Some of rules around these will not change (i.e. unemployment), and some of the policies are evolving and changing daily.

In this episode, the team from Edwards & Associates discuss where the current guidelines stand when it comes to tax planning and what you need to know as you figure out how to best spend and save your money for 2021.

The team discusses the tax implications from PPP loans and what will be forgiven, other loans, HHS grants, unemployment, and loan distributions from retirement accounts.

They also discuss a few things that you can do right now to get yourself set up for the end of the year and maximum dental tax deductions, including purchasing equipment, potentially adding children to the payroll, and getting your retirement accounts set-up and contributions added.

We understand that tax planning, especially for this year, can all be very confusing and are happy to help answer any specific questions you may have. Please feel free to email us at info@eandassociates.com any time or give us a call, and we are happy to help you navigate through your next steps.

Welcome To Beyond Bitewings

 

 

In this episode, the team at Edwards and Associates discusses why Beyond Bitewings was created and what you can expect in upcoming episodes. 

We know running a dental office isn’t easy. In fact, dentists are taught to be great at their craft, but they’re not taught about the business of dentistry. This podcast aims to help educate dentists on business matters, ideas on how they can run their business more efficiently, and to inform about general issues and current events.

Plus, you’ll be on the inside track of how the firm works together to discuss and brainstorm common scenarios brought up by clients and the best way to tackle those and create dental business solutions.

We hope you’ll join us every other week for a new episode, as we’ll have a combination of guest episodes and episodes with our team. 

We would also love to hear from you and answer any specific questions you may have. Please feel free to email us at info@eandassociates.com any time, and we may even have your question on the show!

Beyond Bitewings – COVID Update

As we wrap up 2020, many dentists are wondering how they can optimize the money they received through various grants and loans because of COVID. In this episode of Beyond Bitewings, the Edwards & Associates team discusses the loan forgiveness status and strategies for making sure you’re best prepared for whatever may come in 2021.

There are a lot of questions about PPP loan forgiveness, and the team covers everything you need to know about the timelines for rules for applying for forgiveness of the loan, how and when you needed to spend the money you received, and why the rules of forgiveness aren’t quite yet 100% clear.

The team also discusses the EIDL payment payback.  EIDL stands for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan, and why paying back this loan right away might not be the best decision as we enter 2021.

The third thing they discuss is the HHS stimulus payment and what you need to know when it comes to paying this back in addition to preparing your taxes for 2020.

We understand that these can all be very confusing and are happy to help answer any specific questions you may have. Please feel free to email us at info@eandassociates.com any time or give us a call, and we are happy to help you navigate your next steps.

 

ADCPA Study Club Events

11/17/2020 9:31:17 AM

ADCPA Study Club Events

ADCPA to Co-present Dental Study Club Events:

As an ADCPA member, we have partnered with Dental Consultant Gary Takacs for a series of 6 virtual, continuing education opportunities, the ADCPA Study Club Events are for ADCPA clients and non-ADCPA clients and their teams. 

ADCPA (www.adcpa.org) is a world-renowned academy of accountants and its mission is to enhance its members’ expertise through the sharing of knowledge and resources to provide progressive consulting, accounting, and tax services to dental professionals.

The ADCPA has continuously strived to deliver the best learning opportunities to dentists around the world because we want our clients to succeed. In this respect, we have partnered with Gary to present a series of 6 continuing education virtual study club events. Study Club events will begin November 17, 2020, and will continue every other month thereafter.

These study clubs will be cover a wide range of topics necessary for success in today’s challenging dental environment and we are inviting you to attend at no cost.

Upcoming Topics and Dates:

  • Study Club #1: How to Successfully Reduce Insurance Dependence in Your Practice

Date: Tuesday, November 17th, 2020

  • Study Club #2: Mastering Dental Marketing & Learning to Influence

Date: Tuesday, January 5th, 2021

  • Study Club #3: 10 Elements of a Thriving Practice

Date: Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021

  • Study Club #4: 24 Systems of a Thriving Dental Practice

Date: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

  • Study Club #5: New Patient Experience & 6 Digital Photos

Date: Tuesday, June 1st, 2021

  • Study Club #6: 5 Tips to Master Scheduling

Date: Tuesday, Sep 14th, 2021

More Information:

These events will have two time-slots, Eastern: 6.00 PM to 8.00 PM (Central 5.00 PM to 7.00 PM) and Pacific: 6.00 PM to 8.00 PM (Central 8.00 PM to 10.00 PM) because we want to make this most convenient for you.

The material being presented in these study clubs was developed from Gary’s years of experience growing his own co-owned dental practice and helping dental offices achieve peak levels of performance.

These study clubs are filled with practical information that you and your team members can immediately use to strengthen and enhance your practice.

How To Register For The Study Clubs Series:

Starting with January’s event, we will email you the details of each study club one month ahead so you and your team can register for each event individually. You and your team are invited to all of these sessions but for CE reasons we require you to register for each event separately.

Each study club will be presented for 2 hours each and you will be able to earn 2 hours worth of CE Credits for attending the event in full.

The topics will cover step by step instructions to achieve the goals of each topic. There will also be a 30-minute Q&A session with 3 ADCPA members at the end of each study club.

How to Join:

Here are the links to register for the very first study club session on November 17th:

Eastern: 6.00 PM to 8.00 PM (Central 5.00 PM to 7.00 PM)  – https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/5016050922767/WN_tqVNLaH2SCePmwqZ8ndTrA

 Pacific: 6.00 PM to 8.00 PM (Central 8.00 PM to 10.00 PM)- https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/6816050922431/WN_H3rNPYq8Tl6XEdDB7oNKWg

We are excited about Gary hosting these virtual study clubs with the ADCPA as a means of thanking our local dental community for their support.

This series will be an excellent CE event and we look forward to seeing you and your team members in attendance. Finally, if you are a specialist, you can invite up to 3 additional referral sources to join these scheduled series.

2020 Yearend Tax Planning

It is that time of year again, time for 2020 Yearend Tax Planning!

What is Tax Planning Anyway?

 

Investopedia.com defines tax planning as “The analysis of a financial situation or plan from a tax perspective. The purpose of tax planning is to ensure tax efficiency.” They go on to say “Reduction of tax liability and maximizing the ability to contribute to retirement plans are crucial for success.”  Regularly participating in tax planning is a very valuable tool in planning for a stable future for you and your family.

With 2020 being such a strange year and amidst all of the Covid-19 chaos, are you wondering how your 2020 taxes will pan out? Are you thinking your taxes won’t be as high this year because your income is down? If you received any PPP or other relief, this actually may not be the case. Yearend tax planning can help flesh out the tax information you desire. And depending on your unique situation, we can most likely provide strategies to take before yearend to help minimize the 2020 tax hit.

Are you a current E&A client?  Then you should have already received your tax planning email with the information we need to get started. If you didn’t receive this email please reach out to Meka Edwards meka.e@eandassociates.com and ask her to resend it. Are you not yet engaged as an E&A client but you want or think you need tax planning?  Then please contact Kristi Smith kristis@eandassociates.com she will help you determine if yearend tax planning is right for you. 

The deadline to participate in 2020 Yearend Tax Planning is November 20th when we must have all of your information in our hands for processing. Let us help you end this crazy year with a little peace of mind. Still have questions? Please contact us.

Unemployment Fraud

10/22/2020 8:44:32 PM

Unexpected notification of benefits 

Throughout the pandemic, relief and stimulus funds have been vital to sustaining the business and individual sectors of our society.  Unfortunately, this has also created a breeding ground for new fraud.  This is especially coming to light currently in the area of unemployment fraud.  We’ve heard from several of you, as business owner-employers, with similar stories.  You’ve been unexpectedly approved for unemployment benefits!  Except…you didn’t apply for those benefits.  Some of you have even received unemployment checks out of the blue.  Your practices are up and running and generally thriving, so we’re past the time to apply for unemployment benefits.  This could be an error on the part of the State Unemployment Tax Associations.  But it is equally likely that someone has applied fraudulently under your information.

How to respond

There is no great answer to remedy the situation. As you can imagine, the SUTA offices are overwhelmed with claims.  They have not been able to devote much time to educate us on the protocol for the situation. But here are our best recommendations:

  • Respond to any questionnaires from your SUTA office, as requested, indicating that you are not unemployed.
  • Do not cash any unemployment checks received in error.
  • Retain copies of all correspondence and checks for future support for your SUTA office, if needed.
  • Report the possible fraud to your SUTA office.  For more information on unemployment fraud in Texas click here.  For a direct link to the fraud reporting page in Texas, click link. 

Simplified PPP Forgiveness App

10/09/2020 11:14:17 AM

GREAT NEWS! The SBA has released a simplified PPP forgiveness app for loans of $50K or less. There is now a simple 1-page form. The original application is complex. So, this simplified form will save you much time and money! You will still have to submit documentation to confirm the use of PPP money on qualified items. But gathering the required documentation will be the hardest part of the process! 

You can learn a lot by simply reading the new application, so take a look.  

We will post a list of the required documentation to submit with the application soon. In the interim, you can find the instructions here, which contains the list of required documentation.  

There was previously talk of a simplified application for loans under $150K. We now have the simplified PPP forgiveness app for PPP loans of $50K or less. We don’t know yet if there will be a further simplification for loans between $50K and $150K. We’ll keep you posted!

HHS Phase 3 Relief Announced

10/03/2020 12:43:45 PM

HHS Phase 3 Relief Announced

The Department of Health and Human Resources has announced a new round of relief funding. The portal will be open from October 5 through November 6, 2020. Apply early if you’re eligible!  

So, who’s eligible?

The new round is primarily to benefit two groups that were previously excluded:

  • Practices that opened between January 1 and March 31, 2020.  You were not previously eligible to apply because you had no prior year patient fees.
  • Practices that received a small payment under the general distribution (phase 1).  Round 2 payments were much larger—2% of prior year revenues.  But if you received a phase 1 payment, you weren’t eligible for a phase 2 payment.  You missed out on the more substantial relief.  The new distribution supplements the first payment up to the 2%-of-revenue amount.

Add-on Payment

Also, practices that have already received benefits can apply for an add-on payment for lost revenue.  This is over and above the 2% payment described above, or that you’ve already received.  But approach this add-on with caution! 

Current HHS guidance indicates this may mean reduced net income rather than straight patient fees.  Using that definition, many practices will not ultimately show a decrease in net income for 2020 because expenses paid with PPP funds must be excluded from the calculation.  Many practices are also reporting patient fees trending over 2019.  But they’re reporting lower expenses.  They’re running leaner since the start of the pandemic.  Again, this results in higher net income, not lower.  And if the calculation is truly based on patient fees, and if your practice is one that is trending up from 2019, you won’t qualify for the relief even under the more relaxed definition. 

Consider whether you need it to operate your practice at this point before applying.  HHS relief not used according to the requirements must be returned.

When October 5 arrives and we can see the actual application, we hope to be more enlightened! Click here for the full news release.

HHS Reporting Requirements Finally Issued

09/28/2020 9:31:40 AM

HHS reporting requirements were finally issued on September 19, 2020.  The full disclosure is here.  Like we’ve seen with other Covid-19 related laws this year, the disclosure raised as many questions as answers.  This is a summary of what the requirements mean to most dental practices who received HHS relief funds, as we understand them to this point.

Dates

  • Reports must be submitted before 2/15/2021 for the calendar year 2020.
  • If you’ve used all your HHS funds on allowable items (discussed below) during 2020, no further reporting is required.
  • If you haven’t used all funds on allowable items by the end of 2020, you have until 6/30/2021 to do so, with a second report due by 7/31/2021.

Uses

Allowable use of funds is where the questions arise.  The reporting requirements indicate two permitted uses—healthcare related expenses and lost revenue.  Clarification is definitely needed!  Fortunately, they’ve already got it planned…for “sometime” before the reporting deadline.  In other words, who knows when.  But here’s how it appears:

Healthcare Related Expenses

  • Healthcare related expenses will cover the expenditures you made to comply with all the standards of care the pandemic demanded.  These include things like:

Plexiglas partitions                             UV lighting
Air filtering systems                            PPE—but not PPE that was reimbursed by patients or insurance
Suction machines for air particulates                 

But it also includes General and Administrative expenses that allowed you to “maintain healthcare delivery capacity.”  It lists examples such as:

Rent                                                      Insurance 
Nonclinical staff costs                           
Utilities

Again, these can’t include anything that was reimbursed by another source.  So some of your nonclinical staff costs paid with PPP funds, for example, will be tossed out.  But potentially the remainder of these costs for the period of approximately 3/15-12/31/20 will count.  Since these are all items you pay in a normal year, not just a pandemic year, we would expect there to be some limit on these—the amount above what you would normally spend, for instance.  But the guidance doesn’t indicate any limitation.

And that’s good because the second item is going to be surprisingly hard to meet:  lost revenue.

Lost Revenue

  • Lost revenue was originally announced as lost patient fees.  You were mostly closed for at least 6 weeks.  Easy peasy to prove lost patient fees, right?  But the new guidance changed the requirement to lost net income.  And so far, that is not materializing.  It’s true that in most cases total 2020 revenues will be down from 2019.  BUT the trend we’re seeing is that total expenses are even more down.  That makes net income actually higher than the prior year.  Additionally, expenses reimbursed by PPP costs must be excluded from the calculation.  Throwing out those expenses raises net income even higher.  If adjusted net income for 2020 ends up higher than 2019, there will be no lost revenue under this rule. 

Beyond those requirements, the actual reporting is looking as complex as bureaucracy can make it.  You will have to report specific expenses according to HHS rules which don’t line up with normal financial statement accounts.  In addition, you will have to report personnel metrics and patient metrics…and possibly promise your first-born child.  Hopefully, clarification will come soon.

How To Take Control of Your Practice

09/21/2020 09:32:51

Taking Control of Your Practice

Are you looking for a little more control over your practice but don’t have tons of extra time to make it happen? What if we told you it only takes 15 to 20 minutes each morning to take control of your practice? Our favorite practice management consultant, Dr. Sharon Tiger, explains how in this blog brought to you by our friends at Surety Dental Solutions.

READ THE BLOG

 

RPC Senate Update on Coronavirus Response

07/30/2020 9:32:01 AM

RPC Senate Update on Coronavirus Response

As part of our membership in the Academy of Dental CPAs, we are in close contact with our friends at the American Dental Association. The latest RPC Senate paper dated July 28, 2020, was shared with us from Megan Mortimer, Congressional Lobbyist for the ADA.  

Full Update HERE

 

 

Forgiveness Applications on Hold

07/30/2020 8:42:56 AM

Forgiveness Applications on Hold Until at least August 10

 

The SBA is not accepting forgiveness applications until August 10, 2020, and this date will be subject to extension if any new legislative amendments to the forgiveness process necessitate changes to the system. Further, final Treasury guidance concerning PPP Forgiveness Applications, which was expected in early July, is now not expected until after related federal legislation is resolved.

PPP Forgiveness Update

07/28/2020 3:12:05 PM

Please see the following update regarding the PPP Forgiveness process from our friends at First Citizens Bank:

Legislative Developments:

There continues to be legislative developments, and a preliminary agreement has been reached on the Phase IV/CARES Act 2.0 Coronavirus package. A few provisions – which are subject to change because negotiations are ongoing – are:

  • The proposal includes a streamlined loan forgiveness process for small loans under $150,000 and an intermediate forgiveness process for loans under $1 million.
  • Loan forgiveness will be expanded to include certain supplier costs, operating expenses, and damage caused by rioting.
  • There will be a more generous PPP calculation for farmers and ranchers based on their 2019 gross income.

SBA Guidance on Forgiveness:

Procedures for Lender Submission of PPP Loan Forgiveness Decisions and SBA Forgiveness Loan Reviews were released Friday afternoon. We are currently reviewing these procedures to understand how they impact our process. The SBA’s PPP Forgiveness Platform is slated to go live and begin accepting Lender submissions on August 10, 2020. However, it was also noted in the guidance that based on the legislative developments above, if any new legislative amendments to the forgiveness process necessitate changes to their system, that this date would be subject to an extension.

As of now, August 10th is the earliest ‘target’ date for the SBA’s platform to go live however it is highly likely to get extended due to additional legislative changes. First Citizens is confident our submission system will be ready whenever the SBA platform does go live.

Several major news outlets have reported some discussions included in the Cares Act 2.0 package regarding the possibility of a second PPP loan for severely impacted businesses however nothing has been finalized as of yet so I don’t have any information on that program at this time.

REPOST: HHS Relief for All Qualifying Dentists

07/20/2020 4:59:51 PM

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO August 3, 2020

New Funds Available – CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Expanded to Include More Dentists/Doctors

As of July 10, 2020, the US Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) released a new Provider Relief Fund for Providers. We have been supplied with General Information and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). After a review of this information and collaboration over the weekend with the ADA and members from the ADCPA we believe that dentists, even if they have not billed Medicare/Medicaid/CHIP programs, in the past, may be eligible for this new HHS Stimulus funding. Based on the information we have, right now, we feel that it may be worthwhile for all dentists to initiate the application process to determine if they are eligible for this money. Be aware that the deadline for applying is now August 3, 2020. Details of what we know, now, are below.

  1. On June 10, 2020 HHS released a new stimulus funding and in it, they expanded eligibility to dentists who previously billed Medicaid and State Medicaid (CHIP) programs. Generally speaking, this expanded money to Pediatric dentists and Orthodontists. This money and all other, previous, HHS Stimulus money was all based on healthcare providers having billed Medicare/Medicaid/CHIP programs.

2. On July 10, 2020 the “Dental Distribution FAQs” section of the HHS website was updated. https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/cares-act-provider-relief-fund/faqs/dental-distribution/index.html

a. In this section, HHS seems to state that dentists who have not billed Medicare or Medicaid may be eligible if they are on a “curated list of providers” created by HHS. Their first FAQ states:

i. Many dental providers have already successfully applied for funding under the Medicaid-focused General Distribution. To support payments to dental providers who may not bill Medicare or Medicaid, HHS has developed a curated list of dental practice TINs from third party sources and HHS datasets. Providers with TINs on the curated list must meet other eligibility requirements including operating in good standing and not be excluded from receiving federal payments. As a next step, HHS will work with states and its vendors to authenticate dental providers not on the curated list.

b. Going through the rest of their FAQs, it seems clear that the only way to know if your dental practice is on their list of eligible providers is to start the application process. The fourth FAQ states:

i. When a dental provider applies, the first step of the application process is to validate that their Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is on a curated list of known dental providers. HHS will work to validate applicants that are not on that list. If you are concerned you were not on the curated provider list, please ensure you have an active, verifiable dental provider TIN and submit your information to the Provider Relief Fund application portal. You will be notified if you are permitted to continue your application for PRF payment. Any eligible dental providers not on the curated list will undergo additional review and if validated will be permitted to apply for funding.

3. Key items to know before applying for the funds:

a. The money received is taxable income. The ADA is lobbying for this to be non-taxable but we recommend you assume it will be taxable and you will receive a 1099.

b. This is not a loan. You do not pay this money back to the government.

c. The amount of money you receive is 2% of Gross Revenue on the most recently filed tax return.

d. The funds you receive will be made public so if privacy is a concern to you then you may not want to apply for the Relief Funds. Anyone reading the list will be able to estimate your annual Collections. For example, if you Gross $1 million you are eligible for $20,000.

e. If you already received Relief Funds from HHS, you are not eligible for another round of Relief Funds.

f. It appears you will be required to attest to the fact that you have treated patients who either likely had Covid or you know had Covid at time of visit. We have addressed this attest statement in previous blogs. Some believe that any patient you see could likely have Covid and this does not have to be a confirmed case.

g. Currently the conditions of receipt of the funds state that you cannot use the money for the same expenses you used the EIDL and PPP money on and you cannot use it to pay yourself.

h. Before you apply PLEASE READ the terms and conditions to the program found in the below link. https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/terms-and-conditions-medicaid-relief-fund.pdf

4. What you will need if you want to apply:

a. You will need an Optum ID. See link below. If you already have an Optum ID, you can click on “Sign In”. If you do not have already, please click on “Set Up Optum ID” and follow the prompts.

http://cares.linkhealth.com/#/

If you’d like assistance, contact support at 1(855)819-5909 or OptumSupport@optum.com.

b. There are 3 steps to the application process once you have your Optum ID. You cannot move to Step 2: Revenue and Tax Information until you have successfully completed Step 1: TIN verification (verification should come via email, usually within 24-48 hours)

i. Step 1: TIN verification

        1. You will need your organizational NPI number, Legal business name as reported on your tax return and your Taxpayer Identification number (TIN)

ii. Step 2: Revenue and Tax Information

        1. Please follow the instructions as laid out in the below link. These instructions are extremely helpful and will walk you through each “Field” of the application

https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/medicaid-provider-distribution-instructions.pdf

2. You will need:

    1. Most recent business federal tax return filed
    2. First Quarter 2020 Form 941
    3. FTE Worksheet (link provided in the HHS instructions)
    4. Lost revenues due to COVID (please see explanation in HHS instructions)
    5. Total of increased expenses due to COVID
    6. Payer Mix (% of patients that are self-pay, commercial insurer, medicare, etc)
    7. Amount received on your PPP Loan, if applicable
    8. Business bank account information

3. After submitting the application & info, the link will still say “Get Started” in case you need to re-apply due to incorrect information on the initial application. This warning does not mean that your application was not submitted.

iii. Step 3: Attest to Payment and Terms

        1. This step will not be completed until you receive the funds. You will need the check number and the Relief Fund Payment Amount received.

Knowing that they have opened up eligibility to many more dental practices and that previously having billed Medicare/Medicaid now seems to not be a requirement, it seems as though all interested dental practices should start the application process to see if their TIN is on the curated list. Please remember the deadline if you want to apply is August 3, 2020 so you will want to start this application process right away.

We will continue to monitor the Relief Fund, as well as other opportunities, and share the latest news with you.

HHS Relief for All Qualifying Dentists

07/13/2020 4:45:58 PM

New Funds Available – CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Expanded to Include More Dentists

As of July 10, 2020, the US Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) released a new Provider Relief Fund for Providers. We have been supplied with General Information and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). After a review of this information and collaboration over the weekend with the ADA and members from the ADCPA we believe that dentists, even if they have not billed Medicare/Medicaid/CHIP programs, in the past, may be eligible for this new HHS Stimulus funding. Based on the information we have, right now, we feel that it may be worthwhile for all dentists to initiate the application process to determine if they are eligible for this money. Be aware that the deadline for applying is now July 24, 2020. Details of what we know, now, are below.

  1. On June 10, 2020 HHS released a new stimulus funding and in it, they expanded eligibility to dentists who previously billed Medicaid and State Medicaid (CHIP) programs. Generally speaking, this expanded money to Pediatric dentists and Orthodontists. This money and all other, previous, HHS Stimulus money was all based on healthcare providers having billed Medicare/Medicaid/CHIP programs.

2. On July 10, 2020 the “Dental Distribution FAQs” section of the HHS website was updated. https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/cares-act-provider-relief-fund/faqs/dental-distribution/index.html

a. In this section, HHS seems to state that dentists who have not billed Medicare or Medicaid may be eligible if they are on a “curated list of providers” created by HHS. Their first FAQ states:

i. Many dental providers have already successfully applied for funding under the Medicaid-focused General Distribution. To support payments to dental providers who may not bill Medicare or Medicaid, HHS has developed a curated list of dental practice TINs from third party sources and HHS datasets. Providers with TINs on the curated list must meet other eligibility requirements including operating in good standing and not be excluded from receiving federal payments. As a next step, HHS will work with states and its vendors to authenticate dental providers not on the curated list.

b. Going through the rest of their FAQs, it seems clear that the only way to know if your dental practice is on their list of eligible providers is to start the application process. The fourth FAQ states:

i. When a dental provider applies, the first step of the application process is to validate that their Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is on a curated list of known dental providers. HHS will work to validate applicants that are not on that list. If you are concerned you were not on the curated provider list, please ensure you have an active, verifiable dental provider TIN and submit your information to the Provider Relief Fund application portal. You will be notified if you are permitted to continue your application for PRF payment. Any eligible dental providers not on the curated list will undergo additional review and if validated will be permitted to apply for funding.

3. Key items to know before applying for the funds:

a. The money received is taxable income. The ADA is lobbying for this to be non-taxable but we recommend you assume it will be taxable and you will receive a 1099.

b. This is not a loan. You do not pay this money back to the government.

c. The amount of money you receive is 2% of Gross Revenue on the most recently filed tax return.

d. The funds you receive will be made public so if privacy is a concern to you then you may not want to apply for the Relief Funds. Anyone reading the list will be able to estimate your annual Collections. For example, if you Gross $1 million you are eligible for $20,000.

e. If you already received Relief Funds from HHS, you are not eligible for another round of Relief Funds.

f. It appears you will be required to attest to the fact that you have treated patients who either likely had Covid or you know had Covid at time of visit. We have addressed this attest statement in previous blogs. Some believe that any patient you see could likely have Covid and this does not have to be a confirmed case.

g. Currently the conditions of receipt of the funds state that you cannot use the money for the same expenses you used the EIDL and PPP money on and you cannot use it to pay yourself.

h. Before you apply PLEASE READ the terms and conditions to the program found in the below link. https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/terms-and-conditions-medicaid-relief-fund.pdf

4. What you will need if you want to apply:

a. You will need an Optum ID. See link below. If you already have an Optum ID, you can click on “Sign In”. If you do not have already, please click on “Set Up Optum ID” and follow the prompts.

http://cares.linkhealth.com/#/

If you’d like assistance, contact support at 1(855)819-5909 or OptumSupport@optum.com.

b. There are 3 steps to the application process once you have your Optum ID. You cannot move to Step 2: Revenue and Tax Information until you have successfully completed Step 1: TIN verification (verification should come via email, usually within 24-48 hours)

i. Step 1: TIN verification

        1. You will need your organizational NPI number, Legal business name as reported on your tax return and your Taxpayer Identification number (TIN)

ii. Step 2: Revenue and Tax Information

        1. Please follow the instructions as laid out in the below link. These instructions are extremely helpful and will walk you through each “Field” of the application

https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/medicaid-provider-distribution-instructions.pdf

2. You will need:

    1. Most recent business federal tax return filed
    2. First Quarter 2020 Form 941
    3. FTE Worksheet (link provided in the HHS instructions)
    4. Lost revenues due to COVID (please see explanation in HHS instructions)
    5. Total of increased expenses due to COVID
    6. Payer Mix (% of patients that are self-pay, commercial insurer, medicare, etc)
    7. Amount received on your PPP Loan, if applicable
    8. Business bank account information

3. After submitting the application & info, the link will still say “Get Started” in case you need to re-apply due to incorrect information on the initial application. This warning does not mean that your application was not submitted.

iii. Step 3: Attest to Payment and Terms

        1. This step will not be completed until you receive the funds. You will need the check number and the Relief Fund Payment Amount received.

Knowing that they have opened up eligibility to many more dental practices and that previously having billed Medicare/Medicaid now seems to not be a requirement, it seems as though all interested dental practices should start the application process to see if their TIN is on the curated list. Please remember the deadline if you want to apply is July 24th so you will want to start this application process right away.

We will continue to monitor the Relief Fund, as well as other opportunities, and share the latest news with you.

We’ve been busy!

07/09/2020 06:00:00 AM

Have you been missing us? No worries, we’re still here and we’ve been busy! Not only are we preparing mountains of tax returns while still keeping up with all things related to Covid-19, we’ve been participating in conversations about reopening dental practices and practice management in general. Check out the latest blog brought to you by our friends at Surety Dental Solutions, written by our favorite practice management consultant, Dr. Sharon Tiger. Also listen to the latest edition of The Art of Dental Finance Podcast with Art Wiederman featuring both Sharon and Robert. You won’t be sorry you tuned in! 

When to File PPP Forgiveness Applications

06/24/2020 3:40:04 PM

We finally received a TINY bit of guidance on the PPP loans and when to file PPP forgiveness applications. 

It’s true! The details are below. BUT we are not recommending you be in any big hurry to file for forgiveness. Why?

  • We do NOT recommend using the 8-week covered period because of the complex application process. Only if you have extenuating circumstances would we recommend this path. For instance, if you are planning to sell your practice and need forgiveness first, or you know your FTE count will be too low at the later 24-week date, then this might be recommended. 
  • We are still HOPEFUL there will be blanket forgiveness for PPP loans under $150K. This would negate the application process entirely for many recipients. It could be wishful thinking certainly. Nonetheless, why spend energy on something that may turn out to be unnecessary?  

With that said, here are the updates…

Recent guidance released by the Treasury Department has clarified when PPP borrowers can apply for forgiveness.

Here are some scenarios:

  1. Submit your forgiveness application before the Covered Period ends.
    • If there are Salary/FTE reductions, you must account for those reductions for the full 8 or 24-week period. Borrowers are not allowed to prorate reductions when applying before the Covered Period ends.
    • The forgiveness amount requested must be spent or incurred in the period stated on the application. For instance, a borrower applying 2 weeks before the Covered Period ends cannot include anticipated costs for the remaining 2 weeks.
  2. Submit your forgiveness application as soon as the Covered Period ends. 
    • This option is ideal for borrowers who didn’t reduce wages or FTE during the Covered Period, and who don’t need to wait for the Safe Harbor date.
  3. Submit your forgiveness application within 10 months after the Covered Period ends.
    • This option gives borrowers a chance to restore wage and FTE amounts by 12/31/2020, thus limiting forgiveness reductions.
  4. Submit your forgiveness application after the 10-month deferral period.
    • If borrowers do not apply for forgiveness within 10 months after the Covered Period ends, payments on principal and interest will begin.
    • Even if payments have been made after the deferral period, borrowers can still apply for forgiveness before the loan matures.
  •  

Apply for HHS Provider Relief Now

06/24/2020 9:31:56 AM

The HHS Medicaid/CHIP Provider Relief Fund application deadline is a little less than a month away. But it’s vitally important to start the application process sooner rather than later! 

The first step in applying for payment is registering an account through the HHS Provider Relief Fund Portal. Once you create the account, you will have to provide necessary nonfinancial information to HHS to validate eligibility for the Fund. Validation can take up to 15 days per HHS, so starting soon is important. Submit validations no later than by July 5 to meet the July 20 deadline. 

Once validated, you will provide HHS the practice’s financial information needed to calculate your relief payment amount. After payment is received from the Fund, you will have 90 days to accept the payment by attesting to Terms and Conditions.