Camp Still Closed for the Summer? Consider Leave Options under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act as Department of Labor Issues Updated Guidelines

As many summer camps and daycare facilities announce their continued closures during summer months, working parents and guardians may find relief from the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (Act). The Act extends family and medical leave benefits for eligible employees who are caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed (or…

Returning to the Workplace? New EEOC Guidelines Concerning Accommodations, Potential Harassment, and Antibody Testing

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency that enforces laws against workplace discrimination including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), recently published multiple updated guidelines in anticipation of stay-at-home orders being lifted and employees returning to the workplace. The EEOC’s update specifically addresses the rights of employees to request accommodations and how employers…

Exposed to COVID-19 on the Job? NYS Workers’ Compensation Board Issues New Guidance

With businesses in various phases of re-opening across New York State, workers returning to job sites may wonder if those who contract COVID-19 at work are eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits.  New York’s Workers’ Compensation Board issued new guidance for workers that explains what individuals should do if they believe they contracted COVID-19 on the job, and…

Daycare Still Closed for the Summer? Consider Leave Options under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act

As many summer camps and daycare facilities announce their continued closures during summer months, working parents and guardians may find relief from the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (Act). The Act extends family and medical leave benefits for eligible employees who are caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed (or…

Am I Eligible for $600 Per Week in Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance?

In earlier LR What You Need to Know Now updates here and here, we discussed Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (FPUA), which is the $600 per week extra payment to workers receiving regular unemployment or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits.  The $600 benefit will be paid until July 31, 2020, unless the date is extended by…

Governor Cuomo Announces Limited Initiatives to Address Mental Health Crisis Among Essential Workers

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced new measures to address a mental health crisis among frontline health care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The state is partnering with   Crisis Text Line, a non-profit providing text message-based mental health support, and the Kate Spade New York Foundation, which provides funding to organizations advocating for mental wellness….

Levy Ratner Files Amicus Brief on Behalf of SEIU and 1199SEIU Supporting New York Challenge to DOL COVID-19 Regulations

Levy Ratner filed an amicus curiae brief on behalf of the Service Employees International Union and 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East supporting the New York State Attorney General’s lawsuit challenging the Trump Department of Labor’s regulations interpreting the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.   The amicus brief supports the NYS Attorney General’s argument that the federal…

U.S. Department of Labor Clarifies Worker Eligibility for COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Assistance

In earlier LR What You Need to Know Now postings here and here, we discussed the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program under the federal CARES Act.  PUA provides unemployment benefits to gig workers, independent contractors, self-employed individuals and workers who have run out of regular unemployment benefits, if they can’t work because of COVID-19 related reasons listed here. On April…

Congress Prohibits Surprise Billing by Some Healthcare Providers for COVID-19 Care

Maybe it’s happened to you.  Before you make an appointment or visit the emergency room, you check to make sure that the doctor or hospital is in-network under your health plan.  Weeks later, an out-of-network doctor involved in your care bills you for the difference between the in-network rate your plan paid and the provider’s usual charge. …

Do You Need to Return to Work? Considerations for Workers as States Begin to Reopen

Governor Cuomo announced a timeline for reopening New York state, which may include allowing “low-risk” upstate businesses to open as early as May 15th. Meanwhile, states like Georgia, Colorado, and Minnesota, have already pushed ahead with reopening businesses such as restaurants and barbershops amid a patchwork of rules about what businesses were allowed to reopen….