Paid Sick Leave due to Coronavirus

We're going to cheat a little with this article and mostly re-post from Forbes who did an excellent job breaking this down.  Before that, though, I want to point out a few key points:

  1. This ONLY applies to coronavirus.  Having a doctor's note that says you have a cold, sinus infection, or something else is not applicable.  In fact, refusal to work due to a non-debilitating illness aside from coronavirus can be taken as a resignation or cause for termination in most states unless your company has a sick leave policy that says otherwise.
  2. Employers: you are going to be reimbursed through a payroll tax credit, so unless paying the sick leave puts your company or operations at some sort of risk (such as bankruptcy due to limited cash) there probably isn't a good reason not to pay these benefits.  With that said, there are ways small businesses with fewer than fifty employees can be exempted from having to pay sick leave.
  3. Employees: Understand this is intended for people truly sick or forced to quarantine or otherwise impacted due to coronavirus.  If your employer is still in business and you don't have to self-isolate, be glad you have a job and keep working to help keep your employer stay in business.

The following is from Forbes

 

Do you qualify for paid sick leave due to coronavirus?

Here’s what you need to know.

How To Qualify For Paid Sick Leave

This week, President Donald Trump signed emergency legislation granting paid sick leave to those impacted by coronavirus, specifically aimed to help Americans who need to take off time from work due to coronavirus. Here’s everything you need to know about how to qualify for paid sick leave:

How much paid sick leave can I receive?

If you have, are seeking a diagnosis for, or are being quarantined for coronavirus, then you can receive two weeks of paid sick leave from your employer.

What if you don’t have coronavirus, but you have to care for a family member who does have coronavirus or is being quarantined?

If you are caring for a family member impacted by coronavirus such that they have, are seeking a diagnosis for, or are being quarantined for coronavirus, then you also are eligible to receive two weeks paid sick leave.

What if my child’s school is closed due to coronavirus and I need to stay home to care for my child?

If your child’s school is closed due to coronavirus, and you need to stay home and care for your child, you can receive 12 weeks of paid sick leave.

How much money can I receive for paid sick leave?

The maximum amount you can earn each day depends on your particular situation. If you have coronavirus, are seeking a diagnosis for or are being quarantined for coronavirus, you can receive a maximum of $511 each day. If you are caring for a family member who has coronavirus, is seeking a diagnosis for or is being quarantined for coronavirus, you can receive a maximum of $200 each day. If you are caring for a child whose school has closed due to coronavirus, the maximum you can receive each day is $200 of paid sick leave.

How do I apply for paid sick leave?

Paid sick leave is administered through your employer. You can contact your employer for more information and to determine if your employer provides this benefit because not every employer is required to pay sick leave under this legislation.

Well, then how do I know if my employer will pay me sick leave?

Not every employer is required to pay these sick leave benefits. Generally, qualification under this new legislation may depend on the number of employees at your employer.

I work at a small company with less than 50 employees. Will I get paid sick leave?

It depends. Small businesses with 50 or fewer employees may be exempted under this new legislation if paying sick leave would cause material financial harm to the business. What does that mean? Think of it this way: if paying sick leave to all employees would cause the company to go bankrupt, for example, the company would be exempted from this paid sick leave requirement. Check with your employer to determine if these paid sick leave benefits are offered.

My company has 300 employees. Will I qualify for these paid sick leave benefits?

If you have been employed with your company for at least 30 days, and your company has between 50 and 500 employees, then you would qualify for these paid sick leave benefits.

My company has more than 500 employees. Do I get these paid sick leave benefits?

This law does not require your company to offer these paid sick leave benefits.

What if I work at an employer that is not required to pay sick leave benefits under this new legislation?

It’s still possible that your employer may voluntarily pay at least some paid sick leave benefits, even if your employer is not required. Check with your employer for more details.

Wait. I’m only employed part-time. Am I out of luck?

No, part-time employees are eligible to receive paid sick leave benefits under this new legislation.

Wait. I’m self-employed. Am I eligible?

Yes. Freelancers too.

How can companies afford to pay all these sick leave benefits?

Businesses who pay paid sick leave will be reimbursed in full within three months through a payroll tax credit.

Are these paid sick leave benefits permanent?

No. Currently, these paid sick leave benefits are temporary and last through December 31, 2020 (unless they are extended).

This original article can be found at the following link: https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2020/03/21/do-you-qualify-for-paid-sick-leave-during-coronavirus/#75f44cb547ce

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