Good afternoon everybody. Stressful times are certainly upon us
As you may be aware, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act was just recently passed.
On March 18, 2020, President Donald Trump signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the “FFCRA”). The FFCRA seeks to assist employees impacted by novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”) and applies to employers with fewer than 500 employees. The U.S. House of Representatives originally passed the FFCRA on March 14, 2020; however, the House later made “technical corrections” to the bill, many of which were substantive—such as adding caps on the paid leave—prior to passing it to the U.S. Senate for approval. The pared down House version of the FFCRA approved by the Senate and signed by President Trump provides for, among other things, (1) one new category of paid FMLA leave related to child care disruption due to the current public health emergency and (2) paid sick time for certain reasons related to COVID-19. These provisions will take effect not later than 15 days after enactment, i.e., April 2, 2020, and are scheduled to terminate December 31, 2020. The FFCRA also includes related employer tax credits.
SHRM just posted on its website today (March 25, 2020), several U.S. Dept. of Labor, Wage & Hour Division information sheets: 1 for employees, 1 for employers, and a combined Q&A sheet. This is probably the most definitive and “official” information concerning how to comply with the FFCRA. Note: if you find out about this via a SHRM e-mail, you probably won’t be able to follow its links/URLs to get to those sheets; I found it easier to go to the SHRM website directly, and even then it was a little slow loading, probably due to heavy demand/viewing.
SHRM will be having another webcast this Friday, specifically pertaining to the FFCRA. From various employment law firms’ emails, it looks like a lot of them will be offering their own webcasts/webinars on this subject, too.
If interested in the ENTIRE Bill under the Act, you can find it here:
The official US Department of Labor briefing on the Act can be found here:
Another source of information on the topic is this article that has some great information to assist employers in complying with the new legislation. In the article, there’s a link to a free webinar on the topic that gives extensive coverage.
Another source of free information is from ComplyHR:
We’re all in unchartered territory here, and unfortunately even the U.S. Dept. of Labor, SHRM, and our various employment law firm partners will not have all the answers, but from what I’ve seen they’ve taken a huge first step and I believe there will be more information/guidance to come.
If you need guidance and support with these new regulations, we are prepared to assist. Contact Randy Lumia at Paradise Workplace Solutions: 908-723-4609.