DOL Releases FFCRA Eligibility Tool 

In October 2020, the federal Department of Labor released a Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (FFCRA) eligibility webtool for employees to determine their eligibility for paid sick leave or paid expanded family and medical leave. The webtool will also assist employers in determining their obligations to provide paid sick leave or paid expanded family and medical leave. The employer webtool is still being developed.

COLA Increase for 2021

On October 13, 2020, the Social Security Administration announced the following for January 2021:

  • The cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will increase by 1.3 percent; and
  • The maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax (taxable maximum) will increase to $142,800 from $137,700.

Read the full announcement on the Social Security Administration’s site.

FAQs for Executive Order 13950 – Federal Contractors Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping

On October 7, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor issued the following FAQs for Executive Order 13950, “Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping,” which addresses race stereotyping, sex stereotyping, or scapegoating and federal contractors’ workplace diversity and inclusion trainings:

CDC Guidance for Flu Season and COVID-19

On October 6, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) updated it’s The Difference between the Flu and COVID-19page and addresses the following:

  • Signs and symptoms;
  • How long symptoms appear after exposure and infection;
  • How long someone can spread the virus;
  • How it spreads;
  • People at high-risk for severe illness;
  • Complications;
  • Approved treatments; and
  • Vaccine.

On October 7, 2020, CDC also updated its Influenza (Flu) Resourcespage that contains the following materials for businesses and employers:

  • Flu clinic and flu prevention communication tools;
  • Education and flu prevention messages; and
  • Tools for essential workers.

IRS Extends Due Date for Health Coverage Forms Due Date and Other Relief

On October 2, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service announced (Notice 2020-76) that employers, insurers, and other providers of minimum essential coverage have until March 2, 2021 (instead of January 31, 2021) to provide the following 2020 forms to individuals:

  • Form 1095-B, Health Coverage; and
  • Form 1095-C, Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage, which is filed by Applicable Large Employers (ALEs).

The extension is automatic, no request required, but employers and other coverage providers are encouraged to furnish 2020 information statements as soon as they can. The notice does not extend the due date for filing the 2020 Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, or 1095-C with the IRS.

The notice also provides a final extension for ALEs from penalties under 26 U.S.C. §§ 6721 and 6722 for incorrect or incomplete information if they can prove their good-faith efforts to comply with Form 1095-C:

  • § 6721 imposes a penalty for the failure to file correct information returns; and
  • § 6722 imposes a penalty for the failure to furnish correct payee statements.