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To assist in accessing care in light of COVID-19, your medical provider, Florida Blue, is providing employers a special COVID-19 opportunity to enroll employees who previously did not enroll in coverage. This opportunity is limited to those employees who previously did not elect coverage for themselves (spouses or children) or waived coverage.

The special enrollment opportunity is from April 1, 2020 through April 15, 2020, with an effective date of April 1. Dependents, such as spouses and children, can be added if they are enrolled in the same coverage or benefit option as the employee.

If you have employees that have inquired whether or not they can enroll now for coverage, this may be an option. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us if you would like more information. We will continue to share information as it becomes available and keep you informed.

 

Beginning April 1, 2020, many employers must provide eligible employees with paid leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. However, small businesses may qualify for an exemption to certain leave requirements. Here are the highlights from the DOL:

  • An employer must have fewer than 50 employees and the leave must be needed due to a school closing or childcare unavailability.
  • An employer must also determine that the leave would put its business at risk. The DOL has provided guidance on this requirement.
  • According to the DOL, there are three ways for determining whether the leave jeopardizes a business.

 

Small employers should review the DOL’s guidance to determine whether they would qualify for an exemption for the paid leave requirements.

We will continue to share information as it becomes available and keep you informed. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has now published materials to aid employers in ensuring compliance with this new law, including questions and answers, and the required workplace poster.

Updated DOL FFCRA Notice/Poster
The Department of Labor has issued the Families First Coronavirus Response Act notice/poster. Unfortunately, the first version the DOL issued had a slight error, so the DOL issued a corrected poster to clear up the confusion. You can download the correct version here. The DOL also issued FAQs regarding the notice, which can be found here. Covered employers should post this notice at their workplaces no later than April 1 (the effective date of FFCRA). Additionally, for employers who have employees working remotely, the notice should be sent out by email or regular mail, or by posting it on the company intranet or website.

DOL Issues Additional FAQ on FFCRA
The DOL expanded its existing FAQ on the FFCRA — adding nearly 10 pages of content regarding the new requirements for paid sick leave (E-PSLA) and paid family medical leave (E-FMLA). You can download the Q&A here.

Gulfshore Insurance is focused on supporting and addressing client concerns. Visit our Coronavirus Resource Center for guidance on risk management measures and resources to help manage ongoing operations.

On March 24, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) issued guidance explaining the paid leave requirements under the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).

The FFCRA expanded the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to allow partially compensated employee leave for child care purposes related to COVID-19. The FFCRA also provided for employee paid sick leave for specific COVID-19-related reasons, including an employee’s own illness or quarantine. The Act included other measures to address the effect of the coronavirus pandemic on workers.

The DOL’s guidance explains the two paid leave provisions in the FFCRA. The guidance addresses issues such as:

  • Which employers and employees are covered under the FFCRA;
  • How much leave employers are required to grant employees and for what pay;
  • Exemptions from the law;
  • What tax credits are available to employers to pay for the leave; and
  • Enforcement and penalties under the law.

The language of the FFCRA said it would take effect no later than April 2, 2020; however, the DOL guidance gives an effective date of April 1, 2020. This Compliance Bulletin contains the DOL’s guidance document.

Download the Compliance Bulletin

To assist in accessing care in light of COVID-19, UnitedHealthcare, is providing employers a special COVID-19 opportunity to enroll employees who previously did not enroll in coverage. This opportunity is limited to those employees who previously did not elect coverage for themselves (spouses or children) or waived coverage.

The enrollment opportunity will extend until April 6, 2020. Effective date is April 1. Dependents, such as spouses and children, can be added if they are enrolled in the same coverage or benefit option as the employee.

If you have employees that have inquired whether or not they can enroll now for coverage, this may be an option. Please reach out to us if you would like more information.

We will continue to share information as it becomes available and keep you informed.