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Employment Law Notebook

NJ DOL ISSUES GUIDANCE FOR NJ EMPLOYEES ON AVAILABLE STATE BENEFITS WHEN THEY CAN’T WORK DUE TO THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)

The New Jersey Department of Labor just released guidance on its website explaining what state provided and required benefits employees can obtain due to due to absence from work due to the coronavirus (COVID-19). This article will highlight these benefits. Go to https://www.nj.gov/labor/worker-protections/earnedsick/covid.shtml for complete information. 

EMPLOYEE WHO TESTS POSITIVE OR HAS SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19 AND CAN’T WORK:

  • Employee can use accrued Earned Sick Leave Benefits that all employers must provide under Earned Sick Leave Act (incorporated more generally into some employer’s PTO policies) and
  • Employee can apply for Temporary Disability Insurance (TDI) at myleavebenefits.nj.gov and
  • Workers’ Compensation if an employee gets the virus while working or for any other work related reason, employee can file a claim for benefits  at https://www.nj.gov/labor/wc/workers/claim/filing_index.html.

EMPLOYEE OUT OF WORK DUE TO EMPLOYER’S DECISION TO CLOSE BECAUSE OF COVID-19:

 A claim would initially be considered a temporary layoff, and eliminate the normal requirement that the employee be able, available and actively looking for work.  If, however, the layoff lasts longer than eight weeks, the employee would be required to be able, available and actively looking for work.

EMPLOYEE OUT OF WORK DUE TO PUBLIC OFFICIAL ORDERING EMPLOYER TO CLOSE FOR PUBLIC HEALTH REASONS:

  • Employee can use accrued Earned Sick Leave Benefits that all employers must provide under Earned Sick Leave Act (incorporated more generally into some employer’s PTO policies);

EMPLOYEE HAS HOURS CUT BECAUSE OF A REDUCTION IN FORCE RELATED TO COVID-19:

  • Partial Unemployment insurance benefits are available for an employee who is working no more than 80% of the hours normally worked. Employee can apply at https://myunemployment.nj.gov/

EMPLOYEE SENT HOME BY EMPLOYER BECAUSE EMPLOYEE IS AT RISK OF GETTING COVID-19 OR EMPLOYER THINKS THEY ARE AT RISK OF GETTING IT:

  • If the employer does not pay the employee, the employee can obtain Unemployment Insurance Benefits. Employee can apply at https://myunemployment.nj.gov/    A claim would initially be considered a temporary layoff, and eliminate the normal requirement that the employee be able, available and actively looking for work.  If, however, the layoff lasts longer than eight weeks, the employee would be required to be able, available and actively looking for work.

EMPLOYEE TOLD TO SELF-QUARANTINE

  • Employee can use accrued Earned Sick Leave Benefits all employers must provide under Earned Sick Leave Act (incorporated more generally into some employer’s PTO policies).

EMPLOYEE WHO CAN’T WORK BECAUSE THEIR CHILD’S SCHOOL IS CLOSED BY A PUBLIC OFFICIAL FOR PUBLIC HEALTH REASONS:

  • Employee can use accrued Earned Sick Leave Benefits all employers must provide under Earned Sick Leave Act (incorporated more generally into some employer’s PTO policies).

 EMPLOYEE WHO CAN’T WORK BECAUSE HE OR SHE NEEDS TO CARE FOR A RELATIVE OR OTHER PERSON CONSIDERED TO BE FAMILY WHO HAS THE CORONAVIRUS OR SYMPTOMS OF IT:

  • Family Insurance benefits: Employee can apply for such benefits at myleavebenefits.nj.gov and
  • Employee can use accrued Earned Sick Leave Benefits all employers must provide under Earned Sick Leave Act (incorporated more generally into some employer’s PTO policies).

Workplace issues surrounding the Coronavirus (COVID-19) are complex and changing quickly. Our attorneys are closely monitoring developments on how the Coronavirus is affecting employers and employees.  

 

 

 

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