The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on March 27, 2020 as a federal response to the economic crisis caused by the Coronavirus. As we previously reported, the Act greatly expands unemployment benefits for workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, but many questions remained about how the Act would be applied.  The DOL recently issued guidance answering some of these questions.
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The California Public Health Department issued Guidance recommending that all Californians wear cloth face coverings when in public for essential activities.  San Diego County took that guidance one step further, however, and issued an addendum to its public health order, requiring that certain employees wear cloth face coverings.  The San Diego order also requires covered businesses to follow new posting guidelines, and recommends that all San Diegans heed California’s Statewide Face Coverings Guidance.
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On March 27, President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, an unprecedented $2 trillion economic rescue plan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Our firm has previously summarized the CARES Act’s tax and health and retirement benefits provisions.  Below, we summarize additional aspects of the Act that impact the workplace.
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The Families First Coronavirus Response Act is set to take effect on April 1, 2020.  As we previously reported, the Act requires that employers with fewer than 500 employees provide two new forms of paid leave.  First, covered employers must provide up to 80 hours of emergency paid sick leave to employees who are unable to work because of certain COVID-19 related reasons.  Second, covered employers must provide up to 10 weeks of paid FMLA leave (in addition to the 80 hours of emergency paid sick leave) to eligible employees who are unable to work or telework because they need to care for a child whose school or daycare is closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 
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The Department of Labor released posters that employers with fewer than 500 employees must use to meet the notice posting requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

The DOL issued two posters, one for federal employers, available here and one for all other covered employers, available here.  The DOL also provided a questions and answers page regarding the notice posting requirement here.


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As reported on the Hunton Andrews Kurth Business Immigration Insights blog, as employers throughout the United States increasingly move to remote work arrangements for employees, they are confronted with challenges in completing Form I-9. An employer must inspect an e employee’s original identity and employment authorization documents in the physical presence of the employee within 3 business days after employment begins.
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Employers nationwide are implementing work reductions, closures and furloughs in order to reduce costs during the COVID-19 economic slowdown in the United States.  When employees are put on reduced hours or furloughed, employers face changing legal obligations in multiple areas of labor and employment law.  Companies that employ nonimmigrant workers should not overlook the additional legal obligations they have toward these employees, especially those who are on visas that have prevailing wage requirements.
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Employers in California continue to grapple with how to interpret Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order directing all California residents to stay home, except as needed “to maintain the continuity of operations of the federal government critical infrastructure sectors.”  Since the Order came out, the state has issued and updated its list of “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers” who are exempted from the stay-at-home restrictions for purposes of reporting to work.
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Unemployment insurance is a joint federal-state program, administered separately by each state following guidelines established by federal law. On March 12, 2020, the Department of Labor issued advisory guidance for state workforce agencies, suggesting ways in which the states might relax program requirements and expand benefit eligibility in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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