2021 Supplemental COVID-19 Leave

Senate Bill 95 (“SB 95”) mandates that employers provide employees with supplemental paid sick leave (“SPSL”) for various COVID related absences.  These provisions will apply from March 29, 2021, and will expire on September 30, 2021.

PAID LEAVE ENTITLEMENT

Beginning on March 29, employers are required to provide up to 80 hours of Supplemental Paid Sick Leave to qualifying employees. Part-time employees working a normal weekly schedule are entitled to supplemental paid sick leave in an amount equal to the number of hours scheduled to be worked over two weeks.

This law is retroactive to January 1, 2021, which means that covered employees who took qualifying leave between January 1, 2021 and March 28, 2021, can request payment for that leave if it was not paid by the employer in the amount that is required under this law.  Retroactive payments must be issued on or before the next full pay period after an employee request such payment, and must reflect this payment on the corresponding wage statement.

QUALIFYING REASONS FOR LEAVE RELATED TO COVID-19

Under SB 95, employees may use SPSL if they are (1) unable to work or (2) unable to telework, and meet one for the following reasons listed below:

  • The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19, as defined by an order or guidelines of the State Department of Public Health, the federal CDC, or a local health officer who has jurisdiction over the workplace.
  • The employee is advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine or self-isolate due to concerns related to COVID-19.
  • The employee is attending an appointment to receive a vaccine for protection against contracting COVID-19.
  • The employee is experiencing symptoms related to a COVID-19 vaccine that prevent them from working or teleworking
  • The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis.
  • The employee is caring for a family member who is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related toCOVID-19, or who has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine or self-isolate due to concerns related to COVID-19.
  • The employee is caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed or otherwise unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19 on the premises.