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Tax Monitor

Eighth SBA Interim Final Rule Addresses PPP Eligibility Questions on Non-discrimination and Student Workers

May 6, 2020

By: Mark A. Mangano

On May 5, 2020, the Treasury Department issued its eighth interim final rule (IFR) related to the Paycheck Protection Program, “Business Loan Program Temporary Changes; Paycheck Protection Program-Nondiscrimination and Additional Eligibility Criteria.” The IFR answers two questions related to eligibility; non-discrimination and student workers.


Recipients of PPP loans are entitled to exemptions on the grounds provided in Federal nondiscrimination laws for sex-specific admissions practices, sex-specific domestic violence shelters, coreligionist housing, or Indian tribal preferences in connection with adoption or foster care practices.

Also, religious nonprofit entities are not barred from making decisions with respect to the membership or the employment of individuals of a particular religion to perform work connected with the carrying on by such nonprofit of its activities.

Student workers

Student workers count as employees for determining PPP eligibility unless:

  • The applicant is an institution of higher education, as defined in the Department of Education Federal Work-Study regulations, and
  • The student worker’s services are performed as part of a Federal Work-Study Program or a substantially similar program of a State or political subdivision thereof.

Qualifying work study students must be both excluded from the number of employees counted toward eligibility and the payroll costs associated with work study students must be excluded from calculations of the PPP loan amount.


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