Law Alert: Additional COVID-19 Relief Legislation
“On December 21, 2020, Congress came to an agreement on additional COVID-19 relief, providing assistance to businesses and individuals. Among the many provisions of the over five-thousand page bill, are provisions relating to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, stimulus payments to individuals, additional monies for the Paycheck Protection Program, and unemployment insurance supplements. Despite Congressional approval, whether or not this bill will go into effect remains unknown, as it must be signed by the President to become law.
Significantly for employers, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) is set to expire on December 31, 2020. This new bill allows for covered employers to voluntarily provide the leave provided for
under the FFCRA (paid sick leave and emergency paid Family and Medical Leave) and to take the tax credits associated with these leaves through March 31, 2020. This means that employers will no longer be required to provide paid sick leave and paid emergency Family and Medical Leave as of January 1, 2021. However, if an employer voluntarily provides these paid leave benefits, they will still be eligible to take the tax credit through March 31st. Please be aware, this does not alter an employers’ obligations to provide paid sick leave under New York or other local laws, or to provide standard FMLA leave.”