COVID-19: Government Relief for Businesses

By Linda Worton Jackson

Author’s note: Recently, I collaborated with Overproof to present a webinar about how businesses in the hospitality and beverage alcohol industry could better prepare for the legal and economic impacts of COVID-19. The information below was included in that webinar, as well as additional insights. You can view a recorded version of the presentation here.

While there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and its subsequent impacts on individuals and businesses, what we do know is that the federal government, along with state and local governments and charities, are all stepping up to help provide relief to those in need. Here is what you need to know about relief for businesses.

Immediate Relief Measures

The federal government already has taken some steps to provide immediate relief. For example, tax day has been moved to July 15 from April 15, so businesses do not have to file an extension. There also are tax credits available for small to mid-size employers. Be sure to talk to your accountant about these credits and other potential ways to save on or delay paying taxes. Additionally, your business may have changed since last year and you may now be eligible for new opportunities. 

Be sure to ask about how these items may affect your taxes:

State and Local Relief Measures

States also are ramping up small business loans, and organizations are specifically working to help bartenders, restaurant workers and other employees in the food and beverage industry. You may be able to receive cash donations, food donations or loans from private and trade organizations.

Alternative Employment Opportunities

Finally, if you are looking to make money for yourself during this period of upheaval, look for temporary work in industries that are seeing an increase in business. There is a growing need for delivery drivers and you may be able to work part-time and still collect unemployment.

Where to Find Additional Information

  • To find the latest information, contact your insurance company, lawyer and/or accountant with questions about your options. Things are changing quickly, but they should be able to answer your questions.
  • Trade associations are hard at work advocating for small businesses, especially in the food and hospitality industries. Keep up with their efforts and offer support in any way you can.

While we don’t know when this pandemic will end, there already are relief options available to businesses. Be sure to stay up-to-date as the federal government continues to roll out new stimulus packages and aid, and contact your local government, trade associations and charities for help.

Editor’s note: To watch Overproof’s webinar, How to Prepare for the Economic & Legal Impact of COVID-19, with a presentation by Linda, click here. After this webinar aired, the U.S. passed a $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill, for more information on this stimulus package, click here.

For more information contact Linda Worton Jackson at or visit