Q: Is the Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) still in effect?

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A: Employers with under 500 employees are required to adhere to FFCRA through December 31, 2020. FFCRA requirements apply to leaves taken between April 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020.

Employees who have been employed for 30 days are eligible for a total of two weeks (up to 80 hours) of qualified paid sick leave. The Act also requires employers to allow an employee up to 12 weeks of expanded family medical leave for the closing of a day care or school; of which 10 weeks are paid. An employee can choose to use the FFCRA sick pay for the first two weeks of family leave.  Each employee is eligible for a maximum of two weeks paid sick leave and a maximum of 10 weeks of extended paid family medical leave. The law is currently set to expire on December 31. 2020.

Paid sick leave is for an employee who is unable to work or telework due to a need for leave for various COVID related reasons. The amount of payment is based on the reason for leave as outlined below: Payment is at 100% up to $511 per day for the qualified leave if:

  1. The employee is under a Federal, State or Local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19.  
  2. A health care provider directs or advises the employee to stay home or otherwise quarantine because the health care provider believes the employee may have contracted  or are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19; and quarantining based upon that advice prevents them from working (or teleworking).
  3. The employee is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and is seeking a medical diagnosis.

Extended Paid Family Medical Leave payment is at two thirds the employee’s wages and applies when the leave qualifies based on the following:

  1. The employee is caring for an individual subject to the conditions described in (1) or (2) above. This payment is at a maximum of $200 per day or up to $2,000 in the aggregate.
  2. The employee is caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed (or childcare provider is unavailable) for reasons related to COVID-19. This payment is at a maximum of $200 per day. For employees who use the sick pay for childcare, the aggregate is $12,000 over the 12-week period. For employees who do not use the sick pay, the aggregate is $10,000 over a 10-week period.
  3. The employee is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in consultation with the Secretaries of Labor and Treasury. This payment is at a maximum of $200 per day or up to $2,000 in the aggregate.

Employers can take credits for 100% of the payments made under the act including health insurance costs for the qualified sick leave.

Employers should refer to the following sites for information on the FFCRA and the IRS Tax Credits.

DOL Resources:

COVID-19 and the American Workplace

FFCRA Employee Paid Leave Rights Fact Sheet

FFCRA Employer Paid LeaveRights Fact Sheet

FFCRA Questions and Answers

FFCRA Poster – English

FFCRA Poster – Spanish

FFCRA Poster – Frequently Asked Questions

FMLA and COVID-19 Questions and Answers

IRS Resources:

IRS Tax Credits for Required Paid Leave Frequently Asked Questions

Instructions for Form 7200 – Advanced Payment of Employer Credits Due toCOVID-19

Form 7200 – Advance Payment of Employer Credits Due to COVID-19

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