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OK Employment Law Panel on Coronavirus

Employers and employees need to be aware of updates in state and federal laws regarding how job impacts due to the coronavirus are handled.

As coronavirus cases continue to climb in Oklahoma, the pandemic is having a dramatic impact on local businesses. State and federal laws have been revised to reflect the changing situation. Our Oklahoma City employment law attorneys explain these changes and how they are likely to impact employers and employees in our area.

Requirements Regarding How Employers Handle the Coronavirus Pandemic

A recent panel discussion involving local attorneys and representatives from the Oklahoma Human Resources (OKRH) state council addressed issues that concern both employers and employees as a result of the coronavirus. The panel discussed new requirements, compliance issues, legal pitfalls, and the basic steps business owners should be taking now to ensure compliance with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).

The Act is a federal law that went into effect on April 2, 2020 and requires employers to provide paid sick leave and expanded family or medical leave to workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. It applies to certain public employers and private employers with fewer than 500 employees. Key provisions include:

  • Two weeks or up to 80 paid hours of paid sick leave for all employees at their regular rate of pay if they are unable to work as a result of being quarantined;
  • Two weeks or up to 80 paid hours of leave for all employees at two-thirds of their normal pay rate if they have a bona fide need to care for an individual subject to quarantine or a child whose school or daycare provider schedule is impacted as a result of the pandemic;
  • An additional 10 weeks of paid family or medical leave at two-thirds of their normal rate of pay for employees who have been with the company for at least 30 days.

The Department of Labor (DOL) advises that small businesses with fewer than 50 employees may be exempt from the FFCRA if providing these benefits would jeopardize the viability of their company. Oklahoma city quarantines and stay at home orders currently in effect factor into determining eligibility for benefits. 

Legal Issues Related to the Coronavirus Employers Need to Know

The recent panel discussion also covered other topics related to the coronavirus pandemic that are pertinent for both employers and their employees. These include:

A video recording of the panel discussion is available on the Oklahoma Human Resources website.

Contact Our Oklahoma City Employment Law Concerns

BDIW Law is here to answer your questions regarding how the coronavirus pandemic impacts both employers and employees. Call or contact our Oklahoma City employment law attorneys online and request a consultation today.

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