Virginia COVID-19 Worker Protection Rule Takes Effect

On July 27, Virginia became the first state in the United States to implement a COVID-19 workplace safety rule.  The new rules require employers covered by the Virginia Occupational Safety and Health (VOSH) program to immediately comply with guidance from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state-issued regulations. The standard applies to most Virginia workplaces, including retail employees, office workers, and persons...
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CDC Issues New Guidance On Cloth Face Coverings and Face Shields

Eric Paltell
Eric Paltell
07/14/2020
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ("CDC") has issued new guidance on the use of cloth face coverings, including recommendations for when face coverings may not be appropriate in the workplace.   The CDC guidance supplements  OSHA's 'Frequently Asked Questions" on the use of cloth face masks that were published in early June. According to the CDC, cloth face coverings "are recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory...
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OSHA Publishes Faqs For Workplace Safety During Covid-19 Pandemic

Jeffrey Maylor
Jeffrey Maylor
07/07/2020
Before the July 4th weekend, the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published frequently asked questions  and answers about best practices for preventing the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace.  The FAQs cover topics from cleaning and disinfecting to personal protective equipment.  The answers include links to relevant OSHA publications like OSHA’s Guidance on Returning to Work and an OSHA Alert...
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DOL Clarifies Rules for FFCRA Usage Due to Summer Camp Closure

Bernadette Hunton
Bernadette Hunton
06/30/2020
This past Friday, the DOL issued a Field Assistance Bulletin (No. 2020-4) that clarifies circumstances under which an employee may take leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) due to closure of a summer camp or other program. As a refresher, the FFCRA requires most employers with fewer than 500 employees to offer paid leave for reasons related to the COVID-19 pandemic.  This includes situations where an employee is unable to...
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EEOC Clarifies That Employers Cannot Require Antibody Tests For Employees Returning To Work

Vincent Jackson
Vincent Jackson
06/22/2020
As businesses begin the challenge of reopening and ensuring the safety of employees in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic , the EEOC issued important guidance last week regarding the use of antibody testing.   Antibody tests look for signs in the blood to determine whether the person being tested was ever infected with COVID-19—even if that person never showed symptoms.  While antibody tests do not test for immunity, they may nevertheless help...
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EEOC's Updated COVID-19 Guidance: Employees Not Entitled To Accommodations Because They Live With High-Risk Individuals; Treat Older Workers Equally Despite Risk

In an updated guidance on COVID-19, the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws, the EEOC has clarified an employer need not accommodate an employee's request to telework who is not high risk but lives with high risk individuals.  The EEOC has also clarified that companies may not mandate exclude older workers and pregnant employees from the workplace even though public health authorities advise they are a higher risk group for severe cases...
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EEOC, DOL, and OSHA Activity For Employers To Note

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
06/09/2020
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has delayed the submission of this year's EEO-1 forms until March 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Each year, employers must submit demographic workforce data by March 31 for the prior calendar year.  The EEOC determined to collect both 2019 and 2020 data in March 2021 given the challenging compensation data of these past few months. The Department of Labor (DOL) published updated COBRA notices...
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President Trump Signs Law Easing PPP Forgiveness Restrictions

Sarah Longson
Sarah Longson
06/08/2020
On June 5, 2020, President Trump signed the PPP Flexibility Act  into law.  The Act is intended to address some of the flaws in the Payroll Protection Program and subsequent guidelines that were revealed after borrowers attempted to navigate the requirements for use of loan proceeds in order to qualify for loan forgiveness. The PPP Flexibility Act consists of seven changes related to forgiveness, itemized below. PPP borrowers can choose to...
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Remember the Employee Retention Credit

Clifford Geiger
Clifford Geiger
06/04/2020
Earlier this year laws were passed to provide small businesses and their employees with relief from the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Most seem to be aware that employers receive tax credits for the paid sick and family leave required under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”).  But the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”) also provides a tax credit opportunity designed to...
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The SBA Releases PPP Loan Forgiveness Application, Instructions and Formal Guidance

Sarah Longson
Sarah Longson
05/28/2020
The SBA released the long-awaited PPP loan forgiveness application form and instructions, as well as Formal Guidelines replacing previous guidance on loan forgiveness. Loan Forgiveness Process A borrower must submit the Loan Forgiveness Application (SBA Form 3508) to its lender, together with necessary documentation identified in the application.  The lender will decide regarding loan forgiveness sixty (60) days from receipt of the application and...
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