Sick Leave Information

Here is what we know as of now:

If you have payroll in your business you must read this.  This affects you.  We are doing our best to sift through the many changes and give you the nuts and bolts of new emergency legislation.  As of 3/25/2020 this is what we can confidently put out to you regarding the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act.  Keep in mind this may change.  We will let you know.

Coming up in our next email…Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (EFMLEA), yes this may affect you too.


LGC Staff

Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (EPSLA)

Effective 4/1/2020, EPSLA provides that employers with fewer than 500 employees and all government employers regardless of size must provide both paid and unpaid public health emergency leave to certain employees through 12/31/2020

• EPSLA takes precedence over all existing sick leave policies that may otherwise be in place and may be used in addition to any paid sick leave currently provided by employers

• An employer may not require employees to utilize existing sick leave policies in lieu of EPLSA benefits

• EPSLA applies to all employees with no eligibility period

EPSLA amounts paid to an employee personally impacted by


EPSLA provides that employers must pay an employee his or her

regular pay rate for 80 hours over a two-week period subject to a

maximum of $511 per day and $5,110 in total if the employee falls

under any one of the following three criteria:

  1. The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation

order related to COVID-19

  • The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19
  • The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical Diagnosis

If an employee falls under any one of the reasons below (4, 5, or 6) the

employer must pay two-thirds of the regular pay rate up to $200 per

day ($2,000 in total) in sick leave for 80 hours over a two-week period:

  • The employee is caring for an individual who is subject to an order as described in (1) on the previous slide or has been advised as described in (2) on the previous slide
  • The employee is caring for a son or daughter of such employee if the school or place of care of the son or daughter has been closed or the childcare provider of such son or daughter is unavailable due to COVID-19 precautions
  • The employee is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the secretary of health and human services in consultation with the secretary of the treasury and the secretary of labor

Hours of leave an employee is entitled to under EPSLA

EPSLA applies to both full-time and part-time employees

  • Full-time employees are entitled to take up to 80 hours of leave
  • Part-time employees are entitled to sick leave based on the average number of hours worked in a given two-week period

• If the part-time employee’s hours change from week to week,

employers must determine the average number of hours the employee

worked during the prior six months and provide leave equal to the

number of hours he or she typically worked in a two-week period

• If an employee no longer needs EPSLA leave, the EPSLA benefits

cease on the employee’s next regularly scheduled payday

EPSLA employer credits

EPSLA allows an employer to take a refundable tax credit in an amount equal

to 100% of the qualified sick leave the employer paid for each calendar

quarter plus a pro rata share of the employer’s qualified health plan


• This credit is taken against the employer’s portion of Social Security taxes

• The EPSLA credit is capped at $511/day for qualifying events 1-3 on the

previous slides and at $200/day for qualifying events 4-6 on the previous


• EPSLA effectively provides for a two-week cap on the employer credit for sick

leave which is consistent with the fact that EPSLA provides for only two

weeks of paid sick leave for employees

How to Cash Flow this….

When employers pay their employees, they are required to withhold

from their employees’ paychecks federal income taxes and the

employees’ share of Social Security and Medicare taxes

• The employers then are required to deposit these federal taxes, along

with their share of Social Security and Medicare taxes, with the IRS

and file quarterly payroll tax returns (Form 941 series) with the IRS

• Under guidance that the IRS will soon release, eligible employers who

pay qualifying sick or childcare leave will be able to retain an amount of

the payroll taxes equal to the amount of qualifying sick and childcare

leave that they paid, rather than deposit them with the IRS

• The IRS is still supposed to issue further guidance on this.