Tag Archives: North America

Webinar Video: Wage & Hour – Returning to Work – Class Action Avoidance Series

In this installment of Epstein Becker Green’s “Class Action Avoidance” webinar series, attorney Paul DeCamp discusses wage and hour issues that could arise from transitioning out of the work-from-home reality so many businesses have faced and into the return-to-work phase.

Employers across the country should focus on creating a safe working environment. Certain states and localities have required that employers bringing employees back to the workspace provide or pay for any mandatory personal protective equipment (PPE), including thermometers, gloves, and masks. Additionally, employers should be aware of the time employees take for self-screening and employer-provided screening, such as temperature checks, questionnaires, and handwashing upon arrival.

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ILN Today Post

U.S. DOL Issues Additional Guidance on COVID-19 and FLSA, FMLA and FFCRA Rules

The United States Department of Labor (DOL) recently issued new FAQs addressing requirements under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) as employees return to work amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The DOL has stated that work performed remotely is treated the same as work performed at the primary worksite for purposes of compensability. Employers must compensate nonexempt employees for all hours of telework actually performed, including overtime work, provided that the employer knew or had reason to believe the work was performed. This includes unauthorized hours worked and unreported hours by an employee when an employer knew or had reason to believe that the work was performed. Read more…

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Landlords Should Reconsider Mitigating Damages with COVID-19 Relief Programs

By Sydney Warshaw, from our Business Law Practice Group

August 7, 2020 — A series of recent Superior Court decisions demonstrate that participation in the federal government’s financial relief programs to help tenants and landlords in the wake of COVID-19 may not be as discretionary as landlords initially thought.

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Virginia’s Workplace Safety and Health Standards for COVID-19

On July 27, 2020, Virginia became the first state in the nation to implement workplace safety and health standards for COVID-19.  The Safety and Health Codes Board adopted § 16VAC25-220, an Emergency Temporary Standard for Infectious Disease Prevention: SARS-CoV-2 Virus That Causes COVID-19 (the “Temporary Standard”), which is designed to supplement and enhance existing Virginia Occupational Safety and Health (“VOSH”) laws, rules, and regulations that may apply to the prevention and control of COVID-19 in the workplace.  Virginia imposed these standards because the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”), the federal agency responsible for workplace safety, has thus far refused to make its own extensive recommendations mandatory.  Not surprisingly, the Virginia standards borrow heavily from existing OSHA guidance in most areas.

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ILN Today Post

Massachusetts Governor Extends Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

On July 21, 2020, Governor Charlie Baker extended the current moratorium on evictions and foreclosures during the COVID-19 pandemic for an additional sixty (60) days, until October 17, 2020. That moratorium was set in “An Act Providing for a Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures During the COVID-19 Emergency” (the Act), signed into law on April 20, 2020, and was due to expire August 18, 2020. The Act provided the Governor with the authority to postpone the expiration date in increments up to 90 days.

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The Judicial Clock Will Be Running Again in September

By Mariella De Stefano, from our Insurance Law Practice Group

July 15, 2020 — Over the last month, activities in various sectors are gradually resuming and the re-openings are occurring in phases — as has been the case for our courts.

You may recall that last March, ministerial orders were issued to order the suspension of numerous delays and limitation periods until the Government of Quebec announces the end of the current state of emergency, which continues to be extended. On May 28, we informed you that the Courts would gradually resume their activities as of June 1st. We highlighted that the delays which were suspended temporarily, including prescription periods and procedural delays, would eventually be lifted.

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FDA to Resume Domestic Inspections with New Safety Measures after Temporary Pause Due to COVID-19 Health and Safety Concerns

On March 18, 2020, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the suspension of all domestic routine surveillance facility inspections until further notice. FDA took this measure to protect the health and well-being of its staff and those who conduct the inspections for the agency under contract at the state level, and due to industry concerns regarding visitors. During this interim period, the FDA conducted only a limited number of mission critical inspections using a risk-based approach. On July 10, 2020, FDA announced its plans to resume on-site inspections during the week of July 20th with the assistance of a newly developed COVID-19 Advisory Rating System for assessing the risk of carrying out an inspection in a particular location.

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New Jersey Governor Extends Public Health Emergency Until Early August 2020

On July 2, 2020, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order 162 (“EO 162”) extending the state’s Public Health Emergency by thirty days, i.e., until approximately August 2, 2020. Pursuant to EO 162, all Executive Orders and actions taken by any Executive Branch departments and agencies (including Administrative Orders) that were adopted in whole or in part based on the current Public Health Emergency will remain in full force and effect. A declared public health emergency gives Gov. Murphy and state department leaders expanded authority to respond to a crisis such as COVID-19.

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New Jersey: Rules for Re-Opening Indoor Retail, Recreational and Entertainment Businesses and Individual Instruction at Gyms

On June 26, 2020, New Governor Phil Murphy issued Executive Order 157 (“EO 157”), which details rules for the reopening of indoor retail, recreational and entertainment businesses (including casinos) and individual instruction at gyms.  Initially, EO 157 also permitted indoor dining (with restrictions) to begin on July 2, 2020,  but Gov. Murphy reversed that decision three days later via Executive Order 158 (“EO 158”) and has said that indoor dining in New Jersey will continue to be prohibited indefinitely.  Gov. Murphy based this reversal on the “spikes in COVID-19 cases” in other states that have allowed indoor dining and the need to remove masks indoors for extended periods while eating and drinking.

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Connecticut’s Plan to Reopen Businesses – Rules for Phase 2 Businesses

On June 7, 2020, Governor Lamont issued Sector Rules that Connecticut businesses must follow in order to open during Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan.

Phase 2 (which began on June 17, 2020) includes the following sectors:

  • Amusement parks
  • Hotels/lodging
  • Restaurants (indoor)
  • Museums, zoos and aquariums
  • Indoor recreation (e.g. bowling, movie theaters etc.)
  • Libraries
  • Outdoor events
  • Personal services (e.g. nail salons, tattoo parlors, etc.)
  • Sports and fitness facilities (e.g. gyms, fitness centers, pools, etc.)
  • Film, television and digital media production
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