The City of Chicago has enacted an anti-retaliation ordinance effective immediately aimed at protecting employees from retaliation if they refuse to work at an employer’s premises in compliance with a public health order issued by the City or the State of Illinois. The ordinance also protects employees from adverse employment actions if they do not report to work at the employer’s worksite due to direction from their healthcare provider to stay at home or to care for an individual who has been directed to stay at home.
Continue Reading Chicago’s Anti-Retaliation Ordinance Protects Some Employees from Reporting to Work

Thousands of businesses nationwide are trying to reopen after shutting their doors because of statewide stay at home orders due to COVID-19. Without question, this has created a significant burden on employers whose financial obligations – employee wages and benefits, rent and mortgage payments, among others – have not ceased despite economic uncertainty and decreased consumption across the board.
Continue Reading To Terminate or Not to Terminate? How PPP Loans Impact Termination Considerations for Employers Seeking Loan Forgiveness

Businesses across the country are facing challenges, including lawsuits, as they grapple with how COVID-19 has impacted their operations, work forces, and supply chains. The wave of litigation is rising, and it appears that no industry is immune. Schiff Hardin’s Coronavirus Task Force is publishing this series to identify of-the-moment issues and potential liabilities facing businesses as they begin to re-open, transform their processes, and adapt to the new reality.

As businesses start to reopen across the country, customer-facing companies should consider best practices to reduce the risks of customer and employee exposure to the novel coronavirus, the cause of COVID-19. The right approach will differ based on the type of business, the state and local government guidelines and orders in place, and the geographic region in which the business operates. A hair salon in New York City, for example, will need to take different precautions than an outdoor nursery in Anchorage. Companies should develop a thoughtful plan to reduce the chance of exposure to the virus at a business given the ever-evolving scientific understanding of the disease. Here are five ideas that businesses can use to help ensure that their customers and employees remain safe.
Continue Reading Five Approaches to Keep Customers and Employees Safe When Reopening

Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, Congress created a federal unemployment supplement program, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which extends emergency jobless benefits to gig workers and others who may be ineligible for benefits under existing programs, but are out of work because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Continue Reading DOL Issues Guidance on Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Benefits Under CARES Act

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) continues to update its guidance on the interplay of COVID-related issues and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

The EEOC added new FAQs on April 9 (view our summary) addressing issues of confidentiality, reasonable accommodation, hiring, and harassment. On April 17 and April 23, the EEOC added additional FAQs addressing numerous topics, including the permissibility of widespread COVID-19 testing for employees entering the workplace and additional topics involving requests for accommodations during the pandemic and other issues.
Continue Reading EEOC Updates ADA/COVID Guidance Allowing for COVID Virus Testing and “End Dates” to Some Accommodations

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued updated FAQs on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) issues relating to confidentiality, reasonable accommodation, hiring, and other pandemic-related topics. The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Division (OSHA) also remains active, and has updated employer recordkeeping and reporting requirements regarding workplace transmissions of COVID-19.
Continue Reading EEOC and OSHA Update Prior Guidance on COVID-Related ADA Issues and Workplace Transmission Reporting

Another day, another round of guidance from the federal government on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). This time, it is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that has issued long-awaited FAQs for those employers looking to take advantage of the new law’s tax credits. The FAQs also include insights for employers with under 50 employees seeking an exemption from the law.

Continue Reading Give the IRS Some Credit: IRS Issues Families First Coronavirus Response Act FAQs Ahead of April 1 Effective Date

On March 27 and 28, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released additional question-and-answer style guidance on the emergency paid sick and family leave provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which we first reported here. We look below at seven key issues addressed in the DOL’s updated guidance.

Continue Reading Updated Guidance for Employers on Paid Leave Requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act

On March 24 and 25, the U.S. Department of Labor released guidance on the implementation of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which we wrote about here when it passed last week.

Among other things, the FFCRA requires covered employers to provide paid sick leave and expanded partially paid family and medical leave to certain employees affected by the coronavirus. The FFCRA’s provisions are summarized in the table below and go into effect on April 1, 2020.

The guidance provides further detail concerning various aspects of the new law, including employers’ notice posting obligations and calculations of: (1) number of employees for purposes of determining covered employer status, and (2) employee rates of pay and hours worked for purposes of calculating leave obligations.
Continue Reading Department of Labor Issues Clarifying Guidance for Employers Concerning the Families First Act’s Employee Leave Requirements

On Wednesday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed A10153, a bill designed to provide paid sick leave and wage replacement for workers who are affected by the coronavirus pandemic. While the bill provides public assistance for employees affected by the pandemic, it requires certain employers to provide additional paid sick leave to employees impacted by COVID-19. The new law’s provisions took effect immediately once Governor Cuomo signed it on Wednesday.

Continue Reading New York Law Now Requires Employers to Provide Additional Paid Sick Leave to Employees Affected by Coronavirus