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DOL Clarifies Paid Leave (FFCRA) for Returning to School

Hello, GO-HR friends, clients, and supporters.

As we continue to navigate the complexity of paid leave (including Paid Sick Leave and Expanded Family and Medical Leave) with schools going back into session, here are a few helpful bits of information released by the DOL last week:

  • First, remember that the FFCRA goes until December 31, 2020, so you must continue to be compliant with this (if it applies to you) and to track paid leave time if you’re submitting for the tax credits. (Remember to discuss this with your payroll company or CPA on what’s best for your company.)

  • If an employee used a full allocation of paid leave, you are not currently required to give more under the FFCRA.

  • This updated information applies to item #5 on the FFCRA poster. (See attached)

  • The updates cover 3 areas (at least one of these are likely to happen, so you may as well be prepared):

    • A child attends a school operating on an alternate day basis; (In a nutshell: Your employee can take paid leave intermittently to coincide with when the student is NOT in school and the employee does not have any other “suitable” solutions for when the child is at home.)

    • A parent chooses remote learning when in-person instruction is available; and (In a nutshell: If in-person schooling is available, as well as remote, and the parent chooses remote, rather than sending the child back to school, the employee is not eligible for paid leave (unless the child concurrently falls under one of the other qualifying reasons listed on the poster)).

    • A school begins the year with remote learning but may shift to in-person instruction if conditions change (In a nutshell: If the school is all remote, it’s closed. If it converts to in-class later, it’s open.)

  • You can see a full list of FAQs here and you should review them for full details The DOL updates these so that the most recent updates (in this case on 7/20) are at the end of the list.

  • You’ll need to monitor the situation regularly and it may vary from employee to employee (depending on their school districts).

We understand that this continues to be challenging and ever-changing. Your best option is to always first have a discussion before responding. It is also recommended that you have employees provide you with updates from the school districts so you have the documentation you need to make the best determinations.

Finally, we have attached another “Quick Tips” poster you may find helpful as a guide.


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GO-HR (a dba of BoldlyGO Career and HR Management, LLC)

[O] 614-473-0122  ▪  [C] 614-233-1522

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