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CDC Issues New COVID19 Guidance on Cleaning Worksplaces

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has just issued a graphic and written guidance for employers on cleaning and disinfecting their workplaces, especially when someone there has been sick. Here is the link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/disinfecting-building-facility.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fprepare%2Fdisinfecting-building-facility.html This is just one of many guidances coming out these days from the CDC, the Department of Labor, and the IRS relating to the COVID-19 epidemic.  Stay tuned for more!

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Small Employers May Now Apply for Payroll Protection Loans

As of today, April 3rd, employers with less than 500 employees may start applying for loans under the  Payroll Protection Program, which was created by the CARES Act passed on May 25th by Congress. The SBA is overseeing the program, and says it will take loan applications through June 30th.  The SBA does not actually make the loan to the small business, which must go through a third-party lender. According to the SBA, the program is “designed to provide a direct…

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Poster Now Required for Paid Sick Leave and Family Leave

Employers must now put up – so to speak – a notice as part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) to let employees know about the paid sick leave and paid family leave provisions of the new law, which passed on March 18th. Employers are supposed to “post and keep posted” a notice – the one developed by the Department of Labor (“DoL”) is here: https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/WHD/posters/FFCRA_Poster_WH1422_Non-Federal.pdf – in “conspicuous places on the premises of the employer where notices to employees are…

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Coronavirus Update: Congress Passes 2nd and 3rd Bills on the Pandemic

In the past two weeks, Congress passed its second and third bills addressing the Coronavirus Pandemic, both of which had provisions directly relating to employment.  The first bill did not!  All three bills passed on a bipartisan basis, and have been signed into law by President Trump. The second bill, the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act, HR 6201, mandates paid sick leave and paid medical leave for employees under certain circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic.  The new law goes…

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President Signs NAFTA 2.0, But Awaits Canadian Ratification

On January 29th, the President signed the USMCA free-trade agreement, sometimes known as NAFTA 2.0, which contains an extensive labor component.  The original NAFTA agreement was followed by a labor side agreement. The USMCA treaty has now been ratified by Mexico and the United States, but will not go into effect until after it is ratified by Canada.  Stay tuned for more on that!

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Employers May Use New I-9 Form For New Hires

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has announced that employers in the United States may start using the latest I-9 form to verify the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired for employment in the U.S.  The latest form is dated 10/21/19. Employers may use the latest form or the form dated 07/17/17 through April 30, 2020, but starting onMay 1st they must use the latest form.  There are fillable and paper versions available at uscis.gov. While you’re at it,…

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Defenders of SA Sick Leave Ordinance Appeal Judge’s Order

On January 2nd, the City of San Antonio and private groups defending the City’s Sick and Safe Leave Ordinance appealed an order halting the ordinance to the 4th Court of Appeals in San Antonio. The order granting a motion by business groups for a temporary injunction against the ordinance going into effect had been entered by Judge Peter Sakai on December 12th, after an earlier hearing on the motion. It remains to be seen how quickly the 4th Court of…

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Obamacare Defenders Ask Supreme Court to Hear Case

On January 3rd, the U.S. House of Representatives and a number of Democrat-led states asked the U.S. Supreme Court to immediately take up the recent court of appeals decision in Texas v. United States of America that had invalidated the law’s individual mandate and threatened to invalidate other parts of the law, if not Obamacare in its entirety. On December 18th, the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit had decided that Obamacare’s individual mandate was unconstitutional because it was no…

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New Rule on Salary for White-Collar Exemptions Takes Effect Today

Today, January 1st, 2020, the Department of Labor’s new rule on the salary threshold for the executive, administrative, and professional exemptions takes effect. Under the new rule, in order for an employee to be covered by those exemptions he or she must be paid a salary of $684 a week, or 35,568 a year, in addition to meeting the existing duties tests for those regulations. For more on this, please see my Blog Post of September 27, 2019. Happy New Year!

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Judge Blocks City of San Antonio’s Sick and Safe Leave Ordinance

The City of San Antonio’s revisions to its Paid Sick Leave Ordinance did not save it from being blocked on November 22nd by state district judge Peter Sakai.  Judge Sakai had held a hearing on the ordinance, now dubbed the “Sick and Safe Leave Benefits” ordinance, on November 7th.  The revised ordinance was to have gone into effect on December 1st. On the 22nd, the judge notified the lawyers in the case that he was granting a temporary injunction sought…

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