Last week the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced more guidance to provide information to workers and employers about how each will be able to take advantage of the protections and relief offered by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) which took effect on April 1, 2020.
The new guidance includes questions and answers addressing critical issues such as what documents employees can be required to submit to their employers to use paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave; whether workers can take paid sick leave intermittently while teleworking and whether workers whose employers closed before the effective date of the FFCRA can still get paid sick leave.
This guidance adds to a growing list of compliance assistance materials published by WHD, including a Fact Sheet for Employees, a Fact Sheet for Employers and an earlier Questions and Answers document. Available are two new posters, one for federal workers and one for all other employees, that will fulfill notice requirements for employers obligated to inform employees about their rights under this new law, Questions and Answers about posting requirements and a Field Assistance Bulletin describing WHD’s 30-day non-enforcement policy.
“The Wage and Hour Division is delivering necessary information so that American workers and employers can receive this much needed relief,” said Wage and Hour Division Administrator Cheryl Stanton. “We are working to ensure that workers and employers have the tools they need to maximize the benefits they are entitled to when this law goes into effect on April 1, 2020.”
FFCRA, signed by President Trump, offers American businesses with fewer than 500 employees tax credits as reimbursement for providing employees with paid leave, either for the employee’s own health needs or to care for family members. The legislation will enable employers to keep their workers on their payrolls, while at the same time ensuring that workers are not forced to choose between their paychecks and the public health measures needed to combat the virus.
WHD provides additional information on common issues employers and employees face when responding to COVID-19 and its effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic
For more information about the laws enforced by the WHD, call 866-4US-WAGE, or visit https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd.
For further information about COVID-19, visit the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.