FFCRA Update

January 12, 2021

At this point in time, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) has not been renewed.  Kay Osvig, Whitfield & Eddy Legal said the main takeaway is that there is no mandate that employers offer paid leave related to COVID-19 in 2021. She outlined the following clarifications:  

Emergency Paid Sick Leave. Your council may continue to provide EPSL (2 weeks paid leave), but you are not required to. Employees are not eligible for a second two-week period. In other words, if John received 2 weeks of EPSL in 2020, he does not get another 2 weeks in 2021. If John works 40 hours/week, and only used 30 of his 80 hours in 2020, you may choose to allow him to use the remaining 50 hours in 2021 (if he meets the eligibility criteria – see the Dept. of Labor's FFCRA Poster).

Expanded FMLA. Your council may continue to provide paid family leave for employees caring for their minor children whose school or place of care is closed. You are not required to provide this leave. Employees do not receive an additional 12 weeks of paid time unless your organization provides FMLA on a calendar year basis. 
 
What does this mean for your organization or your employees? If you choose to continue to cover the FFCRA leave, you should do so on a non-discriminatory basis. Your organization may want to post an addendum on the FFCRA poster regarding your organization’s decision whether or not to provide leave.