REMINDER – Employee Notice Obligations PLUS the U.S. DOL Addresses Small Business Exemption, Interplay of FMLA and Emergency FMLA, and other Issues In Updated FAQs on Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
As a reminder, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the “Act”) goes into effect today, April 1, 2020. That means employers are obligated to provide their employees with notice of the Act’s leave opportunities. The DOL’s poster, which, if distributed by email or via company website or intranet, satisfies this notice requirement, can be found here.
Additionally, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued updated FAQs concerning the Act Notably, the DOL has provided guidance regarding the Act’s small business exemption (available to employers with less than 50 employees) and addressed the interplay with “regular” FMLA leave and emergency FMLA leave provided for in the ACT. For example:
Guidance on the Small Business Exemption (see FAQs #58 and #59): The DOL has outlined how employers with less than 50 employees are exempt from providing paid sick leave and emergency FMLA leave under the Act. Namely, a small business will be exempt if an authorized officer of the business has determined that:
Interplay of FMLA leave and Emergency FMLA leave (see FAQs #44 and #45): The DOL has also clarified that an employee may take a total of 12 workweeks during a 12-month period between both FMLA and the Act’s covered reasons. Thus, if an employee has taken some leave under FMLA, but not all 12 workweeks, the employee may take the remaining portion of leave available under the emergency leave provisions. Therefore, if an employee has already exhausted his or her FMLA leave for the relevant period, the employee may not take additional emergency family and medical leave.
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