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  • Writer's pictureHR Wingman

What Employers Need to Know about the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and Return to School

With the new school year starting and different school districts applying different models, more questions have been raised regarding eligibility for emergency paid sick leave and expanded family care leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act ("FFCRA").

Here are how those benefits will apply to each model of schooling:

1. All remote learning – An employee’s child’s school is only offering remote learning. FFCRA paid leave is available if the employee must actually care for the child and no other suitable person in the home is available. The employee is eligible for 80 hours of emergency paid sick time at 2/3 pay (maximum of $511 per day) and a subsequent ten weeks of extended family leave at 2/3 pay (maximum of $200 per day), assuming that the employee has that amount of family leave available. This FFCRA leave is paid by the employer, and tax credits are available.

2. In-person learning – If school is open for in-person learning, the employee is not eligible for FFCRA paid leave to take care of the child because of school closure.

3. Hybrid model – If school is open some days are in-person learning and some days are remote learning, as determined by the school, an employee is able to obtain the FFCRA paid leave on days when the child is not permitted to attend school, and must engage in remote learning, assuming the leave is to care for the child and no other suitable person is available in the home.

4. Option of in-person or remote learning – If the school district gives the family the option for either in-person learning or remote learning, then the DOL states that FFCRA paid leave is not available for the employee because the school is not “closed.” That would be true even if the employee chooses to have the child stay home and engage in remote learning.

If you have any questions or would like more information contact us today!

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