COVID-Related Changes

“I haven’t been paying furloughed employees the emergency paid sick leave but just heard I might need to do it. Am I in trouble?”

Your HR Survival Tip

We have been subjected to ever-changing opinions and rules about COVID-19 since February…and now we have more. Most of these changes have not been backdated so you shouldn’t get in trouble for following the guidance current at that time. The latest changes include:

FFCRA for Non-Working Employees — Originally, only employees actively working were eligible to receive the FFCRA (Families First/CARES) money for emergency paid sick leave or emergency paid childcare leave. Now, anyone still in your employ may qualify for FFCRA money even if there is no available work for them (e.g., furloughed or sitting employees). Note: We don’t believe this applies to employees on a leave of absence.

FFCRA Documentation — You may not require documentation for a COVID-related leave PRIOR to the employee starting the leave. The employees will still need to provide documentation but they may begin the leave and then provide backup as soon as it’s practicable.

CDC Quarantine — The CDC is now only recommending a quarantine of 10 days after a positive test (rather than the original 14 days), assuming mild to moderate effects. However, the employee must also be symptom-free for at least 24 hours.

Intermittent FFCRA Leave — The original rules allowed you to approve or deny the employee’s request for intermittent leave. Now, you must approve it unless the intermittent leave poses a higher risk of infection to others. This change will usually only affect employees using the emergency childcare leave.

Healthcare Provider Definition — The Department of Labor’s (DOL) definition of healthcare providers included everyone working at a healthcare organization, regardless of position. This definition has been narrowed to those actually providing healthcare…but check with your attorney if this might affect your company.

We understand how hard it is to know what the current guidance might be because it has changed so many times. Tracking all the changes related to COVID is even harder than keeping up with California laws. Please contact us if you have a specific question.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>





This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.