On March 18th, the Senate passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
Two week paid sick leave for ill or quarantined workers:
· Who gets it? Not everyone. Only people being tested or treated for the disease, or have been diagnosed with it. Additionally, those who have been told by a doctor or government official to stay home because of potential exposure or are displaying symptoms.
· What does it pay? The maximum amount is $511 per day.
· Who pays for it? Employers are on the hook, but they can recoup the cost with a federal tax credit.
Two week paid sick leave for other workers:
· Who gets it? Workers with family members affected by coronavirus and those whose children’s school have closed.
· What does it pay? These workers will receive up to two-thirds of their pay and it’s limited to $200 per day.
· Who pays for it? Once again, employers are on the hook and can apply for federal tax credits to recoup the cost.
Paid family leave:
· Who gets it? Those whose children’s schools have closed.
· What does it pay? People who can’t work would still receive up to two-thirds of their pay with a limit of $200 per day.
· How long does it last? This benefit lasts up to a total of 12 weeks.
· Who pays for it? As before, employers are on the hook but can apply to be reimbursed by the federal government through tax credits.
What if an employer can’t pay?
· Small businesses (fewer than 50 employees) can apply for a financial hardship waiver from the leave provisions that encompass workers whose children are out of school.
What about businesses with more than 500 employees?
· They are exempt because most provide some sort of paid leave.