Frequently Asked Questions for Employers COVID-19
March 26th, 2020 by JBWK
The Employment Law Group at Jones, Blechman, Woltz & Kelly, P.C. has prepared the following FAQs for our clients to address many of the questions posed by the emergency pandemic of COVID-19. These answers provide general guidance and are not intended to constitute a legal opinion with regard to any particular fact situation. Our contact information may be found below.
Can we ask an employee to stay home or leave work if they exhibit symptoms of COVID19?
Yes. The EEOC confirmed that employers can send employees home when they present with symptoms of COVID-19 to reduce the risk of exposing others, which would not count as a disability-related action because COVID-19 is a pandemic.
Can we require an employee to notify the company if they have been exposed, have symptoms, and/or have tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus?
Yes, employers should require any employee who becomes ill at work with COVID-19 coronavirus symptoms to notify their supervisor. Employees who are suffering from symptoms should be directed to remain at home until they meet the CDC’s guidelines for discontinuing home isolations, which may be found here.
If one of our employees is quarantined due to symptoms and/or has tested positive for COVID-19, what information can we share with our employees?
If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace. Employers should not, however, disclose to co-workers the identity of the quarantined employee because confidentiality requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) still apply.
How much information may we request from an employee who calls in sick?
During a pandemic, such as COVID-19, an employer may ask employees if they are experiencing symptoms of the pandemic virus. Employers must maintain all information about employee illness as a confidential medical record in compliance with the ADA.
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