Short Answer: Not anymore. After December 31, 2020, all coronavirus-related acts designating the amount of sick leave an employee can take has expired. Only the regular sick leave rules apply now.
Full Answer: Previously, the Federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) allowed up to 80 hours of sick leave for full time employees or a proportionate amount for part-time workers. However, the FFRCA expired on December 31, 2020. The obligation to provide FFRCA leave expired and as of this writing has not been extended by either local legislature or Congress.
Employers under the FFRCA were granted tax credits for employees who took sick leave under the FFRCA. While this also expired on December 31, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, extended employer tax credits for paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave voluntarily provided to employees until March 31, 2021. However, this Act did not extend an eligible employee’s entitlement to FFCRA leave beyond December 31, 2020. The California equivalent, the California COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave also expired on December 31, 2020.
Employees who began their leave prior to December 31, 2020 are still entitled to their full leave under the FFRCA. Only claims after December 31, 2020 are barred. Claims for incidents that occured before the expiration date may qualify for leave under the FFRCA provided the conditions are met.
The current list of COVID-19 protections for workers comes in the form of Paid Family Leave (which requires a certified medical notice of COVID-19) and California Paid Sick Leave. Paid Family Leave provides up to eight weeks of benefit payments to eligible workers who have a full or partial loss of wages because they need time off work to care for a seriously ill family member. This pay rate can vary but averages around 60-70% of an employee’s regular pay. California Paid Sick Leave, on the other hand, is regular sick pay that typically accrues at an hour per 30 hours worked or up to 3 days per year.
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