David McDowell, Rose Law Group partner and litigation department director explains what the new family leave law does — and doesn’t — do.

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The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced today its first round of published guidance to provide information to employers and employees about how each will be able to take advantage of the protections and relief offered by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) when it takes effect on April 1.

The guidance – provided in a Fact Sheet for Employees, a Fact Sheet for Employers and a Questions and Answers document – addresses critical questions, such as:

  • How an employer must count the number of their employees to determine coverage;
  • How small businesses can obtain an exemption;
  • How to count hours for part-time employees; and
  • How to calculate the wages employees are entitled to under this law.

The FFCRA will give all American businesses with fewer than 500 employees funds to provide employees with paid leave, either for the employee’s own health needs or to care for family members. The legislation will ensure that workers are not forced to choose between their paychecks and the public health measures needed to combat the virus while at the same time reimbursing businesses.

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“The FFCRA helps workers and provides leave and pay for time they are out due to Covid19 or related issues, this law does not help the business affected by the illness of its employees and it does not ‘give all American businesses with fewer than 500 employees funds to provide workers with paid leave.’ The law gives the employer a tax credit for monies paid but tax credits are not the same as cash to pay wages. Maybe the new stimulus plan will provide more help to the small businesses, but small businesses will suffer greatly from this new law and this pandemic.” ~David McDowell, Partner and Director of Litigation at Rose Law Group

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