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December 29: 90-day Extension of Paid Sick Leave and FMLA

Good Afternoon,

I hope you had a nice holiday. We heard good news from the state today that Michigan’s COVID case rates continue to trend downward. Please keep up the good work so that we continue in the right direction: wear your mask, practice social distancing and wash your hands frequently.

As you may know, there has been a lot of movement on the federal level regarding COVID relief. While no longer mandatory under the new version of the FFCRA, we have made the following changes to our temporary leave policies:

  1. The 80 hours of FFCRA Paid Sick Leave that were set to expire on December 31, 2020, will now be available to employees through March 31, 2021. This sick leave balance will not reset if you have already used some or all of your 80 hours in 2020. For example: If you used 40 hours of FFCRA Paid Sick Leave due to close contact with a COVID-positive person sometime in 2020, you will only have 40 hours remaining to use, if needed, by March 31, 2021. If you have already used 80 hours, you will not receive additional paid sick leave in 2021.
  1. The Special COVID Provisions in FMLA that were set to expire on December 31, 2020, will now be available until March 31, 2021.

If you need to request any of these special leave categories, please reach out to Nicole Peterson, HR Manager, (734) 255-0818. If you have already exhausted your COVID-related leave options listed above, you still have the option to take annual leave or unpaid leave.

As your employer, we are not required to extend these benefits, but we have chosen to do so because we want to provide you tools during such a critical time of the pandemic. We do not expect to extend these temporary leave options beyond March 31, 2021. If you are relying on COVID-related paid leave through FMLA for childcare due to virtual schooling, please keep this in mind and make arrangements as needed for when this benefit expires later this spring.

Similarly, please monitor your use of annual leave so that you have an adequate amount available should you need it after March 31. Of course, we are all hopeful that the COVID situation will look very different in March and COVID-related absences will be a thing of the past.

Please let me or Nicole know if you have any questions.

Thank you,