COIVID-19 Regulatory Alert: Paid Leave Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act

(April 1, 2020) — The National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) has issued a Regulatory Alert to notify its propane industry members that the U.S. Congress has passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to provide employees paid sick leave and paid expanded family and medical leave. It is in effect from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020. Each type of business has different employment structure and employee benefits. It is recommended companies review government announcements frequently.

Butane-Propane News (BPN) The Propane Industry's Leading Source for news and information since 1939 provides LPG industry complete COVID-19 repository for essential energy and transportation businesses federal safety CDC guidelines resources regulations employer resourcesThe U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) are fast-tracking the regulatory process to provide employees and employers with guidance. Information is being updated regularly. [1]  More information available in the Resources section of this document.
 
Types of Leave
Paid Sick Leave . This is two weeks of paid leave, not to exceed 80 hours, for full- and part-time employees. Employees are paid at their regular pay rate or two-thirds of his/her regular pay rate depending on the reason that the employee is taking leave. A per day cap up to $511 and aggregate pay cap up to $5,110 over a two-week period applies. Full- and part-time employees are eligible regardless of the length of employment.
 
Expanded Family and Medical Leave . This is ten weeks of paid leave for child care that is closed or unavailable due to COVID-19. Full- and part-time employees are eligible. The rate of pay is two-thirds of the regular pay rate based on the hours normally scheduled for the employee. There is a per day cap up to $200 and aggregate pay cap up to $2,000 over a two-week period, or up to $12,000 over a twelve-week period if sick leave is combined with expanded medical and family leave. To be eligible, an employee must be employed for thirty days prior to taking leave.
 
Pay rate calculations depend on multiple factors including the reasons for taking leave. Calculations for leave are available in Resources .
 
Employers
Paid sick leave as well as expanded family and medical leave must be provided by employers with under 500 employees, including small businesses with 50 or fewer employees. Small businesses – employers with 50 or fewer employees – may file for exemption from the leave requirements on the basis that it would “jeopardize the viability of the business”. DOL is developing the regulatory process to file for an exemption.
 
Employers must physically or electronically post a notice of the leave requirements. The notice is available from DOL in Employer Paid Leave Requirements under Resources .
 
Employers will recover 100% of paid leave through payroll taxes. The IRS will permit employers to retain from payroll taxes an amount equal to the amount of paid leave provided to employees. The payroll taxes available for retention are federal income taxes, employee share of Social Security and Medicare taxes, and employer share of Social Security and Medicare taxes. If there are not sufficient payroll taxes to cover the cost of leave paid, employers will be able to file a request for accelerated payment from IRS. The IRS is developing additional guidance.
 
Resources
https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-poster-questions

[1] This information is provided solely for informational purposes based on information by the Department of Treasury, Department of Labor (DOL), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and other government agencies engaging in response to COVID-19. It is not to be construed as legal advice or legal guidance. NPGA expressly disclaims any liability associated with the accuracy or content of the information contained in this document. Users should consult the government resources for the most complete and current information pertaining to COVID-19 or contact an attorney for any specific advice.

This information is available for download on the NPGA Member Dashboard.