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Adelberg Rudow attorney Oren Saltzman discusses the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021

Congress recently passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (“CAA”) dealing in part with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) which expired as of December 31, 2020.  Under the FFCRA employers with fewer than 500 employees were given tax credits to provide employees with paid sick leave, either for certain health needs of the employee or for an employee to care for family members for certain COVID-19 related health issues. The CAA allows FFCRA covered employers to voluntarily extend the paid sick leave provided for in FFCRA through March 31, 2021, and at the same time, if the employer elects to extend paid sick leave, the employer may take the tax credits which were provided for in FFCRA.

Additionally, CAA does not expand the amount of leave available to employees under FFCRA. As such, employers cannot claim the tax credit for employees who have already utilized all of their FFCRA leave entitlement. Employers should be mindful of additional paid sick leave and paid family leave requirements under state and local laws and should continue to comply with their own paid leave policies.

CAA also provides direct payments to individuals, an expansion of unemployment insurance benefits, and additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program. CAA does not include liability or employment law protection for employers who are sued by employees after contracting COVID-19 while working in the employer’s premises.

Employers with employment law questions should contact Adelberg Rudow attorney Oren Saltzman today.

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