DOL Tag

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Legal Update Header On Feb. 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) delayed the effective date of its 2020 employee tip rule to April 30, 2021.

This rule was originally scheduled to go into effect on March 1, 2021. The DOL is adopting this delay to allow sufficient time for the agency to review the final rule as required by a memorandum President Joe Biden issued on Jan. 20, 2021. The memorandum ordered a freeze on regulatory changes that had been adopted near the end of the previous administration.

On April 28, 2020, the Departments of Labor (DOL) and the Treasury (Departments) issued deadline relief to help employee benefit plans, plan participants and plan service providers impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Thereafter, on Feb. 26, 2021, DOL Disaster Relief Notice 2021-01 clarified the duration of this relief. The deadlines were initially extended by disregarding an Outbreak Period from March 1, 2020, until 60 days after the announced end of the National Emergency (or such other date announced by the Departments). Under federal law, this period could not exceed one year, meaning that the relief was expected to expire on Feb. 28, 2021.

Legal Update Header On Feb. 26, 2021, the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and the Treasury issued FAQ guidance to clarify health coverage requirements related to COVID-19.

Coverage of COVID-19 Diagnostic Testing

Health plans and issuers must cover COVID-19 diagnostic items and services without cost-sharing. The FAQs explain that plans and issuers:

Legal Update Header An employee working a “one week on, one week off” schedule who takes 12 workweeks of federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave may be required to return to work 12 weeks later, a federal appeals court has held.

In Scalia v. State of Alaska, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals found that an employer may count both “on” and “off” weeks against the FMLA leave entitlement of an employee on a rotating schedule. Ninth Circuit decisions apply in Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. The opinion was issued Jan. 15, 2021.

Legal Update Header On Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) proposed delaying the effective date for the Independent Contractor final rule from Mar. 8, 2021 to May 7, 2021.

The WHD is proposing the delay to allow sufficient time for the agency to review the final rule as required by the memorandum President Biden issued on Jan. 20, freezing regulatory changes adopted late into the previous administration.      

HR Compliance Bulletin header image

On Dec. 29, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued Field Assistance Bulletin 2020-7, which addresses when the DOL will consider electronic posting by employers (by email, or an internet or intranet website) sufficient to provide employees with required notice of their statutory rights under a variety of federal labor laws.

The Bulletin was issued in response to employer questions about the use of electronic means to post notices under the following laws, as more employees work remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic:

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On Dec. 29, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published Field Assistance Bulletin 2020-8 to provide enforcement guidance regarding the use of telemedicine when establishing a serious health condition under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

FMLA Eligibility

FMLA job protections are available to eligible employees who need to take time off work due to their own serious health condition or the serious health condition of a spouse, child or parent.