FFCRA Paid Leave Extended Through September 30, 2021

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (the Rescue Plan) was signed into law on
March 11, 2021 and contains several provisions regarding paid leave for employees under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) originally enacted a year ago. Below are the key points employers need to know:

  • Extending FFCRA leave to employees is optional – employers are not required to provide Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) or Emergency FMLA (EFMLA) leave under the Rescue Plan.
  • Employers who choose to voluntarily continue FFCRA leave may claim tax credits for qualified wages paid between April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021.
  • The Rescue Plan added three new qualifying reasons (7 through 9 below) for an employee to take EPSL. Now employees may take EPSL if the employee:
  1. Is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
  2. Has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19;
  3. Is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis;
  4. Is caring for an individual who is subject to either number 1 or 2 above;
  5. Is caring for his or her child if the school or place of care of the child has been closed, or the child care provider of such child is unavailable, due to COVID-19 precautions;
  6. Is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the secretary of health and human services in consultation with the secretary of the treasury and the secretary of labor;
  7. Is obtaining immunization related to COVID-19;
  8. Is recovering from any injury, disability, illness, or condition related to such COVID-19 immunization; or
  9. Is seeking or awaiting the results of a diagnostic test or medical diagnosis for COVID-19 and the employee has been exposed to COVID-19 or their employer has requested such a test or diagnosis.
  • The Rescue Plan expands the qualifying reasons an employee may take EFMLA leave to be the same as EPSL. Therefore, an employee may take EFMLA for any of the 9 reasons listed above.
  • The first 10 days of EFMLA leave is now paid and the aggregate cap on wages is increased from $10,000 to $12,000.
  • EPSL bank is reset as of April 1, meaning employees will have 80 hours of EPSL to use through September 30 (prorated for part-time employees).
  • The Rescue Plan added a non-discrimination provision that prohibits an employer from obtaining a tax credit in any quarter in which it is found to have favored highly compensated employees, full-time employees, or employees on the basis of tenure when granting EPSL or EFMLA.

Source: ePlace Protect

Share This Post
Table of Contents