COVID-19: FAQs on Federal Labor and Employment Laws

Published Sunday, March 22, 2020
by Melissa A. Bailey, Michael Oliver Eckard, Katherine Dudley Helms, John F. Martin, Eric D. Penkert, Trina Ricketts, Stephen A.Riga, Stephanie A. Smithey, and Stephen R. Woods

The recent spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the United States has caused employers to be increasingly concerned and uncertain regarding the future of their workforces. Below are some answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the latest developments on the virus and guidance from federal agencies.

Note that the virus to which individuals are exposed is SARS-CoV-2. The disease it causes is COVID-19. For readability, these FAQs use the term “COVID-19.” Where appropriate, readers should read COVID-19 as the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

This general guidance is based on U.S. federal employment law and the current medical assessment of COVID-19. State and local laws may apply, and medical assessments may change, resulting in different conclusions.


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