By: Marc Furman, Jonathan Landesman, and Marc B. Cytryn
In a major development, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced that the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) will now take effect April 1, 2020, instead of April 2, 2020. This means that the paid sick time and paid family leave requirements of the FFCRA will now be in place from April 1, 2020 until December 31, 2020, unless further extended by Congress. While the FFCRA provides that it “shall take effect not later than 15 days after the date of enactment” (which was March 18, 2020), the Department of Labor’s decision to move the effective date of the FFRCA up by one day contradicts its prior guidance and the legal community’s universal assumption that the FFCRA would take effect April 2, 2020. Nevertheless, employers should take notice of the new April 1, 2020 effective date and ensure compliance. Employers should also make sure to download a copy of the DOL’s Workplace Poster for the FFCRA, which reflects the new effective date.