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Leave of Absence

House Amends and Clarifies Emergency Coronavirus Employment Measures

Scott Witlin, Los Angeles Attorney

Scott J. Witlin

Partner
Wage and Hour Co-Chair

Just two days after passing sweeping emergency legislation to address the impact of COVID-19, the U.S. House of Representatives moved to amend that legislation to address some issues that were found in the original bill.  

The most significant changes appear to be:

  1. Reduce the unpaid period of Family & Medical Leave from 14 days to 10, to coincide with the length of the Emergency Paid Sick Leave allotment
  2. Cap the amount of Paid Family Leave at $200 per day and $10,000 in the aggregate
  3. Clarify that Emergency Paid Sick Leave applies where the employee is unable to work or telework due to a quarantine or isolation order of a governmental authority
  4. Permit employers of healthcare employees to exclude those employees from the emergency leave and sick pay provisions

The changes harmonizing the paid leave and emergency sick pay provisions now make clear that the plan is to allow employees to receive full pay for the first two weeks of any leave before being put at a reduced two-third pay rate for the remainder of the leave.

The bill is now in the Senate and further amendments are expected, although the Senate is expected to move quickly.


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