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Los Angeles Implements Multiple Employment-Related Measures Responding to COVID-19 Crisis (US)

Ordinances and Executive Orders require paid sick leave, provide additional protections for grocery, drug store, and food delivery employees, and mandatory face mask use Like many other US cities and counties, the City of Los Angeles – the second most populous city in the US and home to four million citizens – has taken decisive … Continue Reading

Update on Federal Agency Activity – EEOC, NLRB, OSHA, and DOL – Amidst the COVID-19 Crisis (US)

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact on all aspects of life for all Americans and we are all still adjusting to this new “normal,” which is anything but normal.  Federal administrative agencies and their employees of course have not been immune to the effects of the current crisis and they, like private sector … Continue Reading

REMINDER: Webinar on April 13 and Summary of Families First Coronavirus Response Act Analysis (US)

Throughout this past week, we have provided a comprehensive analysis of the various provisions of the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), the first ever federal law requiring the payment of paid sick leave and paid family leave for various COVID-19-related reasons.  These daily updates include consideration of employer and employee coverage; qualifying reasons … Continue Reading

SPB IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS – The Families First Coronavirus Response Act – Part Five of a Five-Part Series (US)

Previous installments of our series analyzing in detail the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and the regulations interpreting that law issued by the US Department of Labor addressed the following issues: Part One – employee eligibility and employer coverage; Part Two – the coronavirus-specific circumstances why eligible employees may take paid leave; Part Three … Continue Reading

WEBINAR – April 13: Addressing COVID-19 Practically and Legally – Part Three: What US Employers Need to Know (US)

Please join us on Monday, April 13 at 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT as Jill S. Kirila and Laura Lawless present the third webinar in our series discussing employment issues stemming from COVID-19.  We will dig deep into the recent federal regulations, including the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and will discuss the CARES Act and how … Continue Reading

Update on Most Recent US DOL Guidance on Unemployment Provisions of CARES Act (US)

The US Department of Labor (DOL) has issued a number of publications offering guidance to the states for implementing certain federal unemployment insurance provisions contained in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), including the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) programs.  As … Continue Reading

SPB IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS: The Families First Coronavirus Response Act – Part Four of a Five-Part Series (US)

The first three installments of our five-part series analyzing the US Department of Labor regulations interpreting the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) examined eligibility and coverage issues.  Part One looked at which employees are eligible to take, and which employers are required to provide, emergency paid sick leave and public health emergency paid family … Continue Reading

SPB IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS:  The Families First Coronavirus Response Act – Part Three of a Five-Part Series (US)

The first two installments of our five-part in-depth analysis of the emergency paid sick leave and public health emergency paid family leave provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) – see here and here – analyzed the statutory language and regulations governing employer coverage, employee eligibility, the circumstances under which employees can request … Continue Reading

New York State Enacts Paid Sick Leave Program and Extends PAUSE Restrictions (US)

In light of the ongoing pandemic crisis, on April 6, 2020, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he is extending the “PAUSE” restrictions in New York State, which means that non-essential businesses will remain closed until at least April 29, 2020. Additionally, last week on April 3, 2020, Governor Cuomo signed the FY 2021 Executive Budget: … Continue Reading

SPB IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS:  The Families First Coronavirus Response Act – Part Two of a Five-Part Series (US)

In the first part of our in-depth analysis of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and its accompanying regulations, we addressed employer coverage and employee eligibility issues under the new law.   In the second installment of this series, we turn to looking at the coronavirus-specific reasons upon which an employee can obtain FFCRA leave, … Continue Reading

SPB IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS:  The Families First Coronavirus Response Act – Part One of a Five-Part Series (US)

During the second half of March 2020, the US Congress passed three landmark pieces of legislation addressing the COVID-19 (a/k/a novel coronavirus) pandemic.  One of these was the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).  Under this law, employers of fewer than 500 employees are required to provide eligible employees with up to 80 hours of … Continue Reading

EEOC Reminds Employers: Antidiscrimination Laws Continue to Apply During the COVID-19 Pandemic (US)

The United States currently is experiencing an unprecedented public health emergency due to the COVID-19 virus.  The economic fallout of this crisis has been sudden and brutal on US employers, with vast numbers of businesses ordered to close and nearly 1 million new unemployment claims filed in the past two weeks alone.  In response, Congress … Continue Reading

US Department of Labor Publishes Regulations Clarifying Various Aspects of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (US)

Some questions answered, many still remain On April 1, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released new regulations (29 CFR Part 826), attempting to clarify certain provisions in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).  As we previously reported here, under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act provision of the FFCRA, certain public employers and … Continue Reading

IRS Guidance Enables Employers to Immediately Access Tax Credits Under Coronavirus Relief Legislation (US)

Tax credits may be available to employers who are required to pay additional wages to employees under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the “FFCRA”).  Specifically, tax credits may be available to employers who are required to pay employees under the Emergency Sick Pay Leave and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave portions of the … Continue Reading

UPDATE: US Department of Labor Publishes Further Guidance Concerning Paid Sick Leave and Paid FMLA Leave under FFCRA; Finally Clarifies Small Business Exemption (US)

Since the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) became law last week (amazing how long ago that feels, right?), the US Department of Labor (DOL) has been publishing and updating guidance concerning the public health emergency paid sick leave and emergency Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave required under the law.  (See our prior … Continue Reading

US DOL Releases Additional Guidance Regarding Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) Coverage, With Special Focus on Employers Facing Furloughs and Worksite Closures

On March 25, we reported that the US Department of Labor (DOL) had begun to release informal guidance regarding its interpretation of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which requires that certain employers, including, among others, private employers with fewer than 500  employees, provide paid sick and paid family leave in certain circumstances resulting … Continue Reading

CARES Act Passes Senate—Current Version Contains Major Implications for Employers (US)

In a late night vote on March 25, 2020, the Senate unanimously passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (‘‘CARES Act’’).  The CARES Act will, among other things, inject $2 trillion into the US economy if passed by the House of Representatives and signed by President Trump.  This is widely anticipated to occur … Continue Reading

US Department of Labor Releases Required Notice of Employee Rights Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (US)

  The US Department of Labor (DOL) released on March 25, 2020 the notice to employees required under Section 5103 of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.  The Notice is available here. The DOL also published responses to frequently asked questions about the notice, including where the notice must be posted and how it must … Continue Reading

Regulations under Families First Coronavirus Response Act Not Anticipated Until April (US)         

As we previously blogged, last week Congress passed and the President signed into law the “Families First Coronavirus Response Act,” which contains sweeping provisions requiring employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide emergency paid sick leave and emergency leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to employees impacted by in specific, enumerated … Continue Reading

US Department of Homeland Security to Permit Flexibility Relating to I-9 Compliance for Hiring of Remote Employees

On March 20, 2020, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced it would exercise discretion to defer the physical presence requirements associated with Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) in relation to hiring and re-verifying employees.  Prior to this announcement, DHS policy required employer representatives to conduct the I-9 verification process in person, examining an employee’s … Continue Reading

US Issues Joint Initiatives with Canada and Mexico Temporarily Restricting Travel Across Borders

Effective March 21, 2020, the United States entered into joint initiatives with Canada and Mexico to restrict travel across the land borders with each country.  All non-essential travel across the US-Canada and US-Mexico borders is temporarily restricted.  The restrictions are to remain in place for 30 days subject to review by each of the respective … Continue Reading

Employers Can Take Advantage of Tax Credits Offsetting Emergency Leave-Related Expense Under Families First Coronavirus Response Act (US)

What a week it’s been.  As of today, March 21, it has been three days since Congress passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or the Act) and it was signed into law.  It’s also been three days during which employers have faced dwindling workforces due to employees who are self-quarantining due to exposure, … Continue Reading

OFCCP Exempts New Federal Contracts Entered Into to Provide COVID-19 Relief From Certain Equal Employment Opportunity Requirements (US)

On March 17, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) issued a temporary, three-month exemption from certain equal employment opportunity requirements for new supply and services and construction contracts “entered into specifically to provide Coronavirus relief.”  In the National Interest Exemption Memorandum (NIE Memorandum), the OFCCP provided modified equal … Continue Reading

A WARNing – Business Closings and Mass Layoffs: The Unfortunate Reality In Light of COVID-19 (US)

In light of COVID-19’s global economic impact, employers continue to face the harsh reality that significant and even perhaps permanent changes to their business, including their workforce, will be necessary.  As employers consider their options, unfortunately, closings and mass layoffs are amongst them. In the US, employers must consider the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining … Continue Reading
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