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Federal Court Expands FFCRA Paid Leave

August 7, 2020

This week, a New York district court set aside several U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) rules that interpreted and restricted eligibility for paid leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), finding them inconsistent with the underlying FFCRA statute.

Read this analysis from OMA Connections Partner Thompson Hine, which says the ruling means the emergency paid sick leave and emergency family medical leave under the FFCRA are — at least temporarily — available to more workers, subject to whether the DOL appeals the decision.

Also, see this summary of the court action as analyzed by OMA general counsel Bricker & Eckler. 8/5/2020

COVID-19 Lawsuits Against Employers Continue to Grow

August 7, 2020

At last check, employees from across the country had filed more than 430 COVID-19-related lawsuits against their employers. Not all of the claims have focused on the Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) — the federal legislation governing paid sick leave and family leave requirements — but rather a substantial number of lawsuits have alleged employer impropriety using COVID-19 as a factual backdrop.

How should employers prepare for potential litigation? Read this update from OMA Connections Partner Fisher Phillips. 8/5/2020

Politics and the Workplace in 2020

August 7, 2020

A new national survey by the Cato Institute — a libertarian think tank — provides insight into today’s political climate. The poll found that nearly two-thirds (62%) of Americans are reluctant to openly discuss their political beliefs, especially at work. Nearly one-third say they fear their political views could harm their employment.

Substantial numbers of respondents said they would support the firing a business executive who donated his/her own money to a particular presidential candidate. Half of “strong liberals” supported firing Trump donors, while 36% of “strong conservatives” supported firing Biden donors. 8/3/2020

New Employment Issues Raised by the Pandemic

July 31, 2020

OMA Connections Partner Thompson Hine will host a free webinar Thursday, Aug. 13, at 1 p.m. (ET) to provide guidance on COVID-19-related employment issues. Topics will include:

  • COVID-19-related absences and requests for leave, including for quarantines and the re-opening of schools;
  • Requests for COVID-19 accommodations such as those for employees with underlying health conditions or those who are pregnant;
  • Federal and state COVID-19-related orders that are impacting employers and the workplace; and
  • Updates from the Department of Labor regarding OSHA, wage and hour, and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Register for this important webinar. 7/30/2020

DOL Releases Updated FMLA Forms

July 31, 2020

OMA Connections Partner Dinsmore has published this update following the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) release of streamlined forms employers may use to coordinate leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Dinsmore’s experts note that “although employers are not required to use the WHD forms, employers should be sure to include all relevant information as required by the FMLA and its regulations.” 7/28/2020

Let’s Chat About Your Employee Health Care Plan

July 31, 2020

If you have 30 minutes on Wednesday, Aug. 5 at 1:30 p.m. (ET), you can learn how the OMA helps members offer their employees affordable, comprehensive health care plans similar to what much larger companies offer. Register here for the free webinar.

The collaboration of the OMA, the National Association of Manufacturers, Mercer, and UnitedHealthcare, allows members to offer an easy, Fortune 500-type benefits buying and enrollment experience to employees and their families. 7/29/2020

Addressing ‘Invisible Disabilities’ in the Era of COVID-19

July 31, 2020

During the COVID era, more employers have questions about accommodating employees with high-risk underlying disabilities and mental health impairments, ADA experts say. This article by HR Dive addresses steps employers can take to accommodate workers with disabilities, including those that are not obvious. 7/27/2020

NLRB Poised to Make More Changes to Union Elections

July 31, 2020

This week, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced another round of rule changes that would impact representation election procedures in two significant ways. OMA Connections Partner Benesch has summarized the latest NLRB developments in this analysis. 7/30/2020

Updated Guidance on Sick Leave, Family Leave Laws

July 24, 2020

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has updated its guidance regarding COVID-19 protections under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). According to DOL, the new guidance provides plain-language questions and answers addressing critical issues under all three laws.

The agency has also published this fact sheet for employers, as well as FAQs, about paid sick and expanded family and medical leave under the FFCRA. Available guidance includes this poster to fulfill notice requirements for employers obligated to inform employees about their rights under the FFCRA. 7/22/2020

Managing PTO Donation Requests During COVID-19

July 24, 2020

As the pandemic continues, some employees have expressed an interest in donating their own PTO to help co-workers and community members adversely impacted by COVID-19. OMA Connections Partner Fisher Phillips has published this guidance on how employers can provide employees with an opportunity to donate leave to assist pandemic victims. 7/20/2020