Federal Court Vacates Portions of FFCRA Regulations

Yesterday, a federal court vacated portions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) regulations.  In April, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued regulations interpreting the FFCRA, which provides paid leave time to employees impacted by COVID-19.  The New York Attorney General challenged portions of the regulations, and the matter proceeded to a U.S. District Court in New York.

Specifically, the court addressed the following parts of the FFCRA regulations:

  • The regulations contained a rule excluding benefits from employees whose employers did not have work available for them. The court vacated this exclusion.
  • The regulations defined a “health care provider” that could be excluded from FFCRA benefits. The court vacated this definition.
  • The regulations required that an employer consent to an employee’s request for intermittent leave. The court vacated this requirement.
  • The regulations required an employee to submit certain documentation ahead of being granted leave under the FFCRA. The court vacated this requirement.

We are monitoring this matter closely and await revised regulations from the DOL.  In the interim, employers should revise FFCRA leave practices consistent with the above changes.  For example, an employer should accept requests for intermittent leave, and should not require an employee to submit a written request for leave in order for the employer to consider providing such leave.

If you have questions regarding this advisory, addressing FFCRA leave going forward, or labor and employment law generally, please contact us.

This update is provided for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice.