As enacted, the FFCRA required employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide paid sick leave and expanded Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19.
If enacted, the second coronavirus relief bill will provide the following as it relates to the FFCRA:
Given the foregoing, employers must take certain actions now. First, employers should determine whether they will provide FFCRA paid leave in 2021 and/or require employees on FFCRA leave in 2020 to return to work immediately in 2021, even if the life circumstances that made them eligible for FFCRA leave in 2020 remain. In making these determinations, employers should consider the impact the determinations could have on employee morale, the likelihood that ill employees will report to work out of a need to earn their paychecks and the employer’s bottom line as employers compare the need for employees to report to work versus the benefit the employer could receive from the tax credits. Second, employers must consider the fact that, while FFCRA-covered employers will no longer be required to provide paid leave under federal law as of January 1, 2021, many state and local governments enacted laws requiring paid COVID-19 related leave and those laws may extend beyond December 31, 2020.
For additional information, read our previous alerts on the FFCRA:
Federal Government Passes Paid Sick Leave and Family Leave Expansion Into Law: What Employers Need To Know
DOL Issues Regulations For New Federal Paid Sick and Family Leave Law
The Coronavirus Task Force at Klehr Harrison stands ready to assist you in your business and legal needs. We will continue to provide additional information and guidance as the COVID-19 situation develops.
Author Lee Moylan is chair of the labor & employment practice at Klehr Harrison.