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Supporting Employees’ Caregiving Responsibilities Amidst a Pandemic

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, day cares and schools shut their doors. Months later, child care centers remain closed in many parts of the country, which means that parents are tasked with juggling caregiving and work responsibilities. In fact, according to a survey from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), 60% of U.S. parents report that they’ve had no outside help with child care during the pandemic. Balancing work and caregiving responsibilities can be difficult and can contribute to decreased productivity, poor mental health and increased stress among employees. As a potential second wave of COVID-19 cases looms in the future, schools...

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The New Normal: How COVID-19 Has Reshaped the Workplace

This video series explores the lasting effects the coronavirus pandemic has had on workplaces across the country. This video can help employers identify ways to keep operations running smoothly after reopening their businesses. [video width="1920" height="1080" mp4="https://simafinancialgroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/NewNormal_COVID19-Reshaping-Workplace.mp4"][/video]...

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DOL Launches Employee Tool for Assessing FFCRA Leave Eligibility

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has created an online tool to help workers determine whether they qualify for paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). The tool works by posing a series of questions that help employees assess whether the paid leave provisions of the FFCRA apply to their employer. Once employees learn the provisions do apply, the tool then assists them in determining whether they qualify for FFCRA paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave. The DOL is also developing a similar tool for employers. Employee Leave Under the...

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Employee Compensation and Benefits During Closures and Furloughs

As business closures increase due to the COVID-19 pandemic, employers are faced with questions about compensation and health benefit coverage for their employees. Government relief measures may provide compensation for businesses and individuals in certain situations. In other cases, existing rules on employee rights will apply. Paid leave may be required for some employees by federal or state law. Also, some state insurance regulators are requiring insurance carriers to provide policyholders with additional flexibility regarding premiums and coverage, and some carriers are making similar changes independent of state requirements. This Compliance Overview provides a summary of the issues that employers may encounter...

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Work-life Balance Considerations Post Coronavirus   

The coronavirus pandemic has sparked one of the largest social experiments in history. Virtually overnight, businesses across the world have been forced to rethink how they operate. Decisions made during this uncertain period will resonate for years and may serve as the base for a new, remote lifestyle post-coronavirus. Employee work-life balance is especially important for employers to consider—namely, how old standards play into new working arrangements and how employers can help relieve potential employee burdens. Old Standards, New Problems The classic, white-collar 9-to-5 work shift has been around for decades—an employee works their eight hours a day, then goes home. This standard...

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Coronavirus Bill Requiring Paid Employee Leave Signed Into Law, Tax Credits for Employers

On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the Act) into law. The Act requires employers to provide paid leave for some employees related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, among other measures and also provides for a series of tax credits to employers and self-employed individuals to help cover lost income due to the COVID-19 crisis. The Act takes effect no later than 15 days after it is signed by the president. Emergency Paid Sick Leave The Act requires two weeks of paid sick leave for government workers and employees of companies with fewer than 500 employees....

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Navigating Unemployment Claims Due to Office Closures Related to the Coronavirus

Per the Virginia Employment Commission: "If you are a worker who has been totally or partially separated from your job due to Coronavirus, please note that no claim for unemployment insurance may be filed or processed until an actual lay off from employment has occurred, or until there has been an actual reduction in hours. When filing your claim for unemployment benefits, please be sure to check the reason for separation as Lack of Work/Lay off.  If you will be filing because of a reduction in hours, you will not receive benefits unless your gross earnings are less than your weekly...

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Please be advised: SIMA Response to COVID-19

In response to COVID-19 we will be transitioning our team to a remote working policy for the foreseeable future. At this time a limited staff will remain at our office to provide essential operations. Our service to you as well as the health and safety of our team is our primary concern throughout this time. Our team has the technology and resources required to effectively work remotely and will continue to provide you the service you need. Our Accounting team plans to remain at the office until further guidance is provided by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on the possible extension...

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SAMPLE Pandemic Flu Leave Policy

In the event of a pandemic flu outbreak, as declared by management, in conjunction with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the following Pandemic Flu Leave policy applies to all employees, including temporary and non-benefit eligible. This leave policy is above and beyond what is provided under the company’s Paid Time Off (PTO) and sick leave policies. Employees who qualify for Pandemic Flu Leave will not be required to use PTO or sick leave. Confirmed Infection Employees who are absent due to a confirmed pandemic flu infection will receive full pay for their normally scheduled work hours until a medical...

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