The Families First Coronavirus Response Act ("FFCRA") provides covered employees with additional paid leave if they cannot work or work from home because of the need to care for a child whose school is closed for COVID-19-related reasons.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, school districts have adopted different models for re-opening. Some have opted for all online learning, others have adopted a hybrid model of some in-school learning combined with online learning, while others have simply re-opened.
The Department of Labor ("DOL"), in response to these various school re-opening models, has added new material to its current guidance on the FFCRA to explain when employees are eligible to take leave under the various school re-opening models.
Under the DOL's new guidance, employees are eligible to take leave under the FFCRA if their child's school is closed or is only offering online learning. Employees are also eligible to take leave under the FFCRA if their child's school is offering a hybrid model, but only for the days when their child is not in school (i.e., only on remote learning days). On the other hand, employees are not eligible to take leave under the FFCRA if their child's school is open, but the employee chooses to keep their child home.
Previous guidance from the DOL, available here, has not been changed. Employers should stay up-to-date on the DOL's guidance regarding the use of FFCRA leave to ensure compliance.
Employers with questions are advised to consult with their legal counsel regarding specific questions or concerns. If you have any questions, or need assistance, please feel free to contact Jeremy D. Iosue or Jason T. Hartzell at (216) 651-0451.
This Employment Law Alert may provide an overview of specific federal and/or state laws and regulations. It is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, legal advice for any particular situation or individual.
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