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The US Department of Labor (DOL) has issued amendments to regulations implementing paid sick leave and extended family and medical leave provisions in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). The revisions were issued in response to a decision of the New York Federal Court that violated parts of the regulations. The revisions enter into force on 1
Summary of revisions to the FFCRA regulations
The revisions confirm and further explain two provisions in the regulations:
- The requirement that employees may take FFCRA leave only if they work otherwise would be available to them
- The requirement for an employee to have employer approval to take FFCRA leave periodically
DOL also revised the definition of "care provider" to include only employees who meet the definition of that term under family and medical leave rules or who are employed to provide services that are integrated with and necessary for the provision of patient care (such as diagnostics, prevention or treatment).
The audits also clarify that 19659004] Employees must provide the necessary documentation supporting their need for FFCRA leave to their employers as soon as possible (rather than always before taking leave).  For extended family and medical leave, prior notification is not prohibited and is usually required if the leave is foreseeable, for example when an employee has a warning that the school will be closed.
- 1 April, 2020: DOL issued regulations in accordance with the FFCRA's provisions on employee leave.
- Aug. 3, 2020: The Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York partially waived the FFCRA leave rules.
- Sept. 16, 2020: Revisions to the FFCRA rules come into force.
This legal update is not intended to be exhaustive, nor should discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel for legal advice.