FFCRA Leave Mandate Expired 12/31/20
In March 2020, Congress passed and President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. FFCRA included mandates for up to 80 hours of emergency Paid Sick Leave for employees of employers of 500 or fewer employees impacted by COVID-19 with tax credits to defray the cost to employers of that leave, as well as expanded Family and Medical Leave Act benefits for for employers caring for dependents impacted by COVID-19.
California Governor Gavin signed AB 1867 Newsom in September 2020, which codified an earlier Executive Order closing “loopholes” in FFCRA requiring 80 hours of COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave for California-based “food sector employers” (including agricultural employers) of 500 or more employees.
Both mandatory FFCRA paid sick leave and AB 1867 supplemental paid sick leave expired on December 31, 2020. While no movement seems to be afoot in Washington to extend FFCRA leave mandate or in Sacramento to extend AB 1867 leave, the PPP package that became law in late December allows employers to continue to offer FFCRA COVID-19 paid sick leave on a voluntary basis, and to continue to access the federal payroll tax credit designed in the original FFCRA legislation to defray the cost to employers of that leave. As a result, as of January 1, 2021 FFCRA COVID-19 paid sick leave is no longer mandatory for employers of 500 or fewer employees, but employers may voluntarily continue to offer it and access the tax credit until March 31, 2021.
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