Paid Family Leave
Effective April 2, 2020 FMLA provides workers with up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave when they can’t work—either onsite or remotely—because their minor (under age 18) son’s or daughter’s school or child care service is closed due to a public health emergency. The FMLA defines “son or daughter” as a biological, adopted or foster child; a stepchild; a legal ward; or a child of a person taking the place of a parent.
The first 10 days of leave can be unpaid. An employee can request to substitute accrued vacation, personal or sick leave during this time, but an employer may not require an employee. For the other 10 weeks, eligible workers must receive two-thirds of their regular rate of pay, which will be capped at $200 a day (and $10,000 total).
Paid Sick Leave
Effective April 2, 2020 many employers will have to provide up to 80 hours of paid-sick-leave benefits if an employee:
- Has been ordered by the government to quarantine or isolate because of COVID-19.
- Has been advised by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine because of COVID-19.
- Has symptoms of COVID-19 and is seeking a medical diagnosis.
- Is caring for someone who is subject to a government quarantine or isolation order or has been advised by a health care provider to quarantine or self-isolate.
- Needs to care for a son or daughter who’s school or child care service is closed due to COVID-19 precautions.
- Is experiencing substantially similar conditions as specified by the secretary of health and human services, in consultation with the secretaries of labor and treasury.
Paid sick leave must be paid at the employee’s regular rate of pay, or minimum wage, whichever is greater, for leave taken for reasons 1,2,3 above. Employees taking leave for reasons 4,5,6 may be compensated at two-thirds their regular rate of pay, or minimum wage, whichever is greater. Part-time employees are eligible to take the number of hours they would normally work during a two-week period. Employers cannot require an employee to use other paid leave before using the paid sick time provided in the new legislation.
Under the legislation, paid sick leave is limited to $511 a day (and $5,110 total) for a worker’s own care and $200 a day (and $2,000 total) when the employee is caring for someone else.