The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) includes provisions for charitable contribution deductions and student loan repayments made on behalf of employee by employer.
Beginning in 2018 most taxpayers lost the chance to itemize their deductions due to the standard deduction being almost doubled. Therefore, there was no benefit to making charitable contributions if the taxpayer was not able to itemize.
The CARES Act includes a provision that will allow a total of $300 to be deducted above the line against adjusted gross income for payments made to qualified charitable organizations.
The CARES Act allows student loan repayments made on behalf of an employee by an employer. Total educational benefits, including student loan repayments as well as other educational assistance (tuition, fees, books, etc.) cannot exceed $5,250.
Amounts exceeding $5,250 must be included in box 1 of the employees Form W-2.