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  • Coronavirus Alert

    Coronavirus and the Impact on Workers Compensation

    April 21, 2020
    While Coronavirus is not an accidental injury as contemplated in the Workers’ Compensation Act, it may be considered an “occupational disease” if it meets the statutory definition for a compensable claim. In Ark. Code Ann. 11-9-601(e)(1)(A), “Occupational disease” is defined as “any disease that results in disability or death and arises out of and in the course of the occupation or employment of the employee or naturally follows or unavoidably results from an injury as that term is defined in this chapter.”
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  • Coronavirus Alert

    What Employers Need to Know: Unemployment, Shared Work Program & Other CARES Provisions

    April 15, 2020
    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides expanded unemployment benefits for those individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, the CARES Act creates three unemployment programs: (i) Pandemic Unemployment Assistance; (ii) Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation; and (iii) Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation. These programs work alongside state unemployment benefits and are fully funded by the federal government.
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  • Coronavirus Alert

    Department of Labor Issues FFCRA Guidelines

    April 3, 2020
    We previously reported that the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires employers with 500 or fewer employees to provide two new types of paid leave:  1) two weeks of sick leave under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act; and 2) twelve weeks of extended family medical leave under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act.  These provisions went into effect on April 1, 2020. The Department of Labor has now issued regulations providing clarification on these paid leave requirements. Below, we address some of the most common questions we have received under the new regulations.
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  • Coronavirus Alert

    CARES Act Bill Expands Unemployment; Gives Needed Relief For Employers

    March 27, 2020
    The CARES Act, now passed by the House and Senate and expected to be signed by the President changes the unemployment system and created a pandemic unemployment assistance program. For weeks of unemployment, partial unemployment, orinability to work caused by COVID-19 between January 27 and December 31 the act provides covered individuals with unemployment benefit assistance when they are not entitled to any other unemployment compensation or waiting period credit. This includes self-employed and other workers, such as independent contractors, who have not previously been included in the unemployment system. The weekly benefit amount is generally the amount determined under state law plus an additional $600 for up to 39 weeks (which is notably longer than the typical 26 weeks in most states).
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  • DOL Issues Families First Notice for Employers to Post

    March 26, 2020
    The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. These provisions will apply from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. Employers are required to post the FFCRA Poster to provide notice to all employees.
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  • Coronavirus Alert

    DHS/ICE Temporarily Allows Employers to Verify I9 Documents Remotely

    March 23, 2020
    Employers familiar with the federal form I9 know that the Authorized Representative must physically inspect the documents presented by the employee so that she may attest the documents appear genuine and relate to the new employee. The employee must also be physically present. That has presented a problem for employers with remote workers. At least for now, there is a temporary solution, but only for those employers working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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  • Coronavirus Alert

    EEOC and DOL Provide Needed Guidance

    March 20, 2020

    The EEOC and the Department of Labor have posted recent guidance for employers related to COVID-19. Here are key takeaways for employers:

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