Listen to Alliant’s webcast to learn more about managing COVID-19 related leaves.
Effective April 1, 2020 (ending December 31, 2020), the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires private employers with fewer than 500 employees (and certain public agencies with one or more employee) to provide emergency paid sick leave (EPSL) for six COVID-19 related purposes and up to 12 weeks of emergency FMLA leave (EFMLA) for school closures or where childcare is not available as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. It provides tax credits to offset the cost of these two provisions. (See Alert 2020-10.) The FFCRA also mandates that any group health plan or health insurance issuer provide coverage without cost sharing for COVID-19 testing and any office or other visits that result in an order for COVID-19 testing.
The Department of Labor (DOL) released a model posting on FFCRA leaves and clarified several key features of the law through a series of FAQs. On April 1, 2020, it released comprehensive temporary regulations. Much of the preamble to the regulations addresses how the DOL resolved numerous drafting issues and inconsistencies between EPSL and EFMLA provisions. However, the regulations clarify several other outstanding issues and reiterate or add to the basic FCRAA framework. This Alert provides a summary of EPSL and EFMLA provisions and highlights significant clarifications. Notably, many key provisions and clarifications apply to both EPSL and EFMLA and are addressed together after EPSL and EFMLA specific guidance under Common EPSL EFMLA Provisions.
Alliant also has several robust COVID-19 compliance resources they’ve made available to the public:
- Coronavirus Compliance Guide: 60 FAQs organized by the following topics: Furloughs and Layoffs, New Paid Leave Requirements, Cost Containment Issues, and Benefit Plan and Employment Practice Issues.
- Coronavirus Related Leave and Benefit Options based on Employee Status: Addresses state and federal leaves, STD, State Disability, Benefits Continuation, and Unemployment options based on the employee’s Coronavirus related circumstance
- Cost Containment Checklist: a checklist of items to consider and necessary tasks when making certain cost saving changes to your plan.