Emergency Coronavirus Bill Signed into Law

Legal Update on Coronavirus

Guest Blog By Terin Cremer, Esq.

On March 18, 2020 President Trump signed US House of Representatives’ Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201).  

The bill applies to employers with fewer than 500 employees. The following is a summary of some of the highlights that will affect these employers:

  • 12 weeks of job-protected paid FMLA for Employees who have worked for the Employer for at 30 days. 
    • Employees may elect to use accrued PTO during the first 10 days.
    • Employees may use the leave to care for a child under 18 whose school or daycare has been closed as a result of COVID-19.
    • Following the first 10 days of leave, employers must compensate employees by at least 2/3 of the employees’ regular rate of pay with a $200 per day cap and $10,000 aggregate.
  • Emergency Paid Sick Leave 
    • Employers must provide full time employees with 80 hours of paid sick leave for circumstances related to COVID 19.
      • Part time employees are entitled to the number of paid sick time equal to the number of hours they work over an average 2-week period calculated from a 6 month look back.
    • Paid sick time must be at the regular rate of pay with a cap of 
      • $511 per day per employee and $5,110 max if the employee has COVID-19.
      • $200 per day per employee and $2,000 max if the employee is caring from children under 18 whose school or daycare has been closed
  • Employers must post notices of Employee’s leave rights.
  • These provisions will be effective no later than April 2, 2020 and expire December 31, 2020.

To alleviate some of the financial burden, the bill provides for a limited refundable employment tax credit equal to the amount that an employer pays to an employee under this provision, i.e., up to $511, or $200 respectively, to a maximum of ten days per employee for the year.

As you face the day to day questions of balancing business concerns, the law, and health and safety, the firm is here to assist in any way we can: tcremer@barbascremer.com

Terin Cremer is the managing partner at Barbas Cremer, PLLC, a boutique employment and business law firm. There she helps employers and senior level executives with everything from finding the right person for an open position, firing the wrong person, and every contract and policy a business could encounter along the way.  Terin is a member of our Key Women’s Leadership Forum. She works with businesses across the country on issues related to human resources and client contracting. Prior to forming Barbas Cremer, Terin was the Chief Human Resources Officer and Associate General Counsel of a St. Petersburg financial services company employing over 20,000 employees. While at that company Terin joined the C-suite at the age of 29. There Terin led HR strategies and operations. She also managed a variety of legal matters including litigation, transactional, governance, and employment matters.