In March 2020, when Congress passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) with a sunset date of December 31, 2020, few anticipated the COVID-19 pandemic would be ongoing into 2021. Several similar state and local laws also sunset at the end of 2020. But the pandemic has not slowed, and requests for COVID-19-related leave (along with the corresponding tax credits) continue.
Here’s What We Know
The new stimulus bill (Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021) passed on December 27 did not extend the FFCRA obligations. Employers who were covered under the FFCRA are no longer obligated to provide their employees leave.
However, while the FFCRA does not mandate an employer continue to provide COVID-19-related paid sick and paid family leave beyond December 31, 2020, it allows employers who are covered under the FFCRA to voluntarily decide to provide “qualified” paid sick leave or paid family leave wages to their employees and continue to receive a tax credit for such wages until March 31, 2021.
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