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H.R. 6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) - Signed Into Law

H.R. 6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) - Signed Into Law

H.R. 6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act

In an effort to provide economic relief to employers impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic, the President has signed H.R. 6201 – Families First Coronavirus Response Act into law. How does this impact you and your business? Let’s take a look at a few of the key provisions.

Amendments to the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993.

Employees of employers with fewer than 500 employees and government employers, who have been on the job for at least 30 days, with the right take up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act to be used for any of the following reasons:

  • To adhere to a requirement or recommendation to quarantine due to exposure to or symptoms of coronavirus;
  • To care for an at-risk family member who is adhering to a requirement or recommendation to quarantine due to exposure to or symptoms of coronavirus; and
  • To care for a child of an employee if the child’s school or place of care has been closed, or the child-care provider is unavailable, due to a coronavirus.
  • After the two weeks of paid leave, employees will receive a benefit from their employers that will be no less than two-thirds of the employee’s usual pay.

Emergency Transfers for Unemployment Compensation Administration.

Provides $1 billion in 2020 for emergency grants to states for activities related to processing and paying unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, under certain conditions. $500 million would be used to provide immediate additional funding to all states for staffing, technology, systems, and other administrative costs, so long as they meet basic requirements about ensuring access to earned benefits for eligible workers.

Those requirements are:

  • Require employers to provide notification of potential UI eligibility to laid-off workers
  • Ensure that workers have at least two ways (for example, online and phone) to apply for benefits
  • Notify applicants when an application is received and being processed and, if the application cannot be processed, provide information to the applicant about how to ensure successful processing.
    States will be required to report on the share of eligible individuals who received UI benefits and the state’s efforts to ensure access within one year of receiving the funding. The funding will be distributed in the same proportions as regular UI administrative funding provided through annual appropriations.

The Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act.

Requires employers with fewer than 500 employees and government employers to provide employees two weeks of paid sick leave 1) paid at the employee’s regular rate to quarantine or seek a diagnosis or preventive care for coronavirus, or 2) paid at two-thirds the employee’s regular rate to care for a family member for such purposes or to care for a child whose school has closed, or child care provider is unavailable, due to the coronavirus.

  • Full-time employees are entitled to 2 weeks (80 hours) and part-time employees are entitled to the typical number of hours that they work in a typical two-week period.
  • The bill ensures employees who work under a multiemployer collective agreement and whose employers pay into a multiemployer plan are provided with leave.
The Act, and the requirements under the Act, expire on December 31, 2020.

Payroll Credit for Required Paid Sick Leave.

Provides a refundable tax credit equal to 100 percent of qualified paid sick leave wages paid by an employer for each calendar quarter. The tax credit is allowed against the tax imposed by Section 3111(a) (the employer portion of Social Security taxes). Qualified sick leave wages are wages required to be paid by the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act.

The section makes a distinction between qualified sick leave wages paid with respect to employees who must self-isolate, obtain a diagnosis, or comply with a self-isolation recommendation with respect to coronavirus.

For amounts paid to those employees, the amount of qualified sick leave wages taken into account for each employee is capped at $511 per day.

For amounts paid to employees caring for a family member or for a child whose school or place of care has been closed, the amount of qualified sick leave wages taken into account for each employee is capped at $200 per day.

The aggregate number of days taken into account per employee may not exceed the excess of 10 over the aggregate number of days taken into account for all preceding calendar quarters.

Payroll Credit for Required Paid Family Leave.

Provides a refundable tax credit equal to 100 percent of qualified family leave wages paid by an employer for each calendar quarter. The tax credit is allowed against the tax imposed by Section 3111(a) (the employer portion of Social Security taxes). Qualified family leave wages are wages required to be paid by the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act.

The amount of qualified family leave wages taken into account for each employee is capped at $200 per day and $10,000 for all calendar quarters.

If the credit exceeds the employer’s total liability under Section 3111(a) for all employees for any calendar quarter, the excess credit is refundable to the employer.

Not sure whether this credit applies to you and your employees? No problem! We can help you out over a short phone call.

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