FAMILIES FIRST CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE ACT
March 19, 2020
As expected, yesterday the President signed into law HR 6201: Families First Coronavirus Response Act. HR 6101 is a sweeping piece of legislation that aims to provide a variety of emergency relief measures to businesses and individuals, including paid family and sick leave for employers with FEWER THAN 500 employees.
Here is a link to the new law, which will take effect no later than April 2, 2020 (providing employers with up to a fifteen (15) day period to implement business protocols, policies and procedures to comply with the Act’s requirements) : https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/6201/text. A copy of the Act is also attached to this e-mail.
The new law adds 2 new leave obligations for small and medium-sized employers through December 31, 2020.
First, it amends the FMLA for COVID-19-related leaves as follows:
Please note that unlike the usual FMLA eligibility requirements, an employee is eligible upon completion of 30 days of employment to take the emergency paid family leave.
Second, it provides 80 hours of paid sick leave for full-time employees (or pro-rata for part-time employees) if the employee is unable to work or telework as follows:
(1) The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
(2) The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine because of COVID-19; or
(3) The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and is seeking a medical diagnosis.
(4) The employee is caring for an individual subject or advised to quarantine or self-isolate
(5) The employee is caring for a son or daughter whose school or place of care is closed, or child care provider is unavailable, due to COVID-19 precautions; or
(6) The employee is experiencing substantially similar conditions as specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in consultation with the Secretaries of Labor and Treasury.
An employee is immediately eligible for paid sick leave. This new sick leave obligation is IN ADDITION TO any existing sick leave benefits already provided by the employer, and the employer cannot require the employee to first use the employer-provided sick leave benefits.
Discrimination and retaliation for exercising leave rights is prohibited. Failure to provide leave constitutes a failure to pay wages (hence exposure to wages claims). While an employee-friendly law, these new leave requirements make it more expensive for employers to do business. Employers must first pay the employees and then get reimbursed in the form of a tax credit equal to 100% of the leave wages paid by the employer. There are many questions raised by this new law, and we expect the Department of Labor to issue guidance soon. In the meantime, employers must start taking steps for the imminent requirement to comply.
DAVIS WANG PROMOTES MICHELLE YOUNKIN TO MANAGING ATTORNEY
October 24th, 2019
Davis Wang, PLC, a woman and minority-owned full-service employment law and complex litigation firm, is pleased to announce that Michelle Younkin has been promoted to Managing Attorney.
As Managing Attorney, Ms. Younkin oversees all aspects of the Firm’s operations and, with Founder Shirley Wang, is responsible for facilitating client relationships, devising and implementing litigation strategies and providing high-level strategic advice. Ms. Younkin plays an active role in the recruitment and professional development of the Firm’s attorneys and staff and leads the Firm’s diversity, inclusion and values-based initiatives.
In addition to her management responsibilities for the Firm and the Firm’s clients, Ms. Younkin also litigates complex cases. Her current practice focuses on the defense of class and collective actions, including wage and hour claims, and discrimination claims brought under federal and state employment and fair housing statutes. She advises private and public companies and non-profit organizations, along with their boards, on best practices for compliance with wage and hour laws, the prevention of workplace discrimination and harassment, and the prevention of workplace violence.
“Michelle is an excellent attorney, and a creative, strategic thinker. Her two decades of legal practice combined with her past experience as an entrepreneur give her a distinctive perspective on the issues facing our clients. Michelle solves problems without known solutions, and I am excited that Michelle will join me in leading the growth of the firm,” says Shirley Wang, the Founder of Davis Wang.
Prior to beginning her employment law practice, Ms. Younkin litigated antitrust and unfair business practices matters in the main office of an international law firm based in San Francisco. Her later role as Founder of a boutique e-discovery company, informs her practical, business-oriented approach to litigation and trial strategy. Ms. Younkin earned her law degree from the University of California Hastings College of the Law, and her undergraduate degree in English and Psychology, summa cum laude, from Kenyon College.
DAVIS WANG WELCOMES ADDITION OF SENIOR COUNSEL HANNIBAL P. ODISHO
October 7th, 2019
Davis Wang, PLC, a woman and minority-owned full-service employment law and complex litigation firm, is pleased to announce the addition of Hannibal P. Odisho as its Senior Counsel.
Mr. Odisho joins Davis Wang with a decade of employment law experience representing companies, governmental employers, and non-profit organizations in all phases of employment law litigation, including wage and hour disputes, employment whistleblower claims, and employment discrimination, harassment, and retaliation cases...Read More
Best Practices for Conducting Internal Workplace Investigations—Tips From the Trenches, 15th Annual National Association of Dealer Counsel
April 29, 2019, Dana Point, CA.
Shirley Wang on panel of speakers.
Navigating Compliance and Litigation Landmines of CA Wage and Hour Laws
May 14, 2019, Alameda County’s California Employer Advisory Council, Fremont, CA.