As employers across the country are implementing return to work procedures and are gradually opening up their workspaces, many employers were left with unanswered questions regarding what testing they may conduct prior to permitting entry into the workplace.  The EEOC has previously taken the position that employers may test employees for an active COVID-19 infection (through a viral COVID-19 test) prior to entry into the workplace, and may conduct other screening mechanisms in an effort to prevent employees from entering the workplace with COVID-19, such as temperature checks. In recent guidance, however, the EEOC has stated that, at least for now, an employer may not require employees to undergo serological (antibody) testing as a condition of returning to work.
Continue Reading EEOC states that requiring antibody tests prior to entry to the workplace is unlawful

The CDC recently released new guidance on considerations for events and gatherings. The scope of the guidance is broad, covering any planned or spontaneous event, even those with only small numbers of people. CDC has reminded event-holders that the guidance is meant to supplement any safety laws, rules, or regulations applicable to events or gatherings, such as requirements under state or local law.
Continue Reading CDC releases new guidance on considerations for events and gatherings

As cities and states around the United States are gearing to reopen facilities, employers are tasked with the daunting responsibility of ensuring that their workspaces are safe. As we previously posted, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently issued guidance expressly stating that employers may require employees to be tested for COVID-19 before they are allowed to enter the workplace. While the EEOC offered guidance signaling that employers may only administer COVID-19 tests that are “job related and consistent with business necessity,” the guidance fell short of clarifying certain practical considerations surrounding the testing. One such consideration was whether employers are required to compensate employees for the cost of and time spent undergoing the COVID-19 test. The EEOC has been silent on these points – so has the federal Department of Labor (DOL).
Continue Reading Employers need to consider whether they must compensate employees for mandatory COVID-19 testing

As New York enters a new phase of the COVID-19 pandemic and New York businesses are beginning to reopen, New York is taking steps and providing tools to employers in an attempt to mitigate further spread of COVID-19.
Continue Reading Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order grants commercial building owners and retail store owners the ability to conduct temperature screenings

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to release workplace re-opening guidance, both generally and for employers in specific industries. Employers executing or developing their re-opening plans should consider new guidance along with requirements and guidance at the state and local levels, and watch for continued developments – particularly by checking the CDC website on COVID-19, which is frequently updated.
Continue Reading CDC provides updated guidance and toolkit for employers preparing to re-open

On May 19, 2020, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued Revised Enforcement Guidance (Guidance) requiring employers to investigate whether employee COVID-19 infections are “work-related” for the purpose of determining whether a record must be made of such infections. This Guidance, which is effective on May 26, 2020, backtracks from OSHA’s prior April 10 guidance which had previously relaxed recordkeeping obligations on all non-healthcare, emergency response, or correctional institution employers for COVID-19 illnesses.
Continue Reading OSHA requires all employers to investigate whether COVID-19 infections are “work-related”

On May 6, 2020, Governor Newsom enacted executive order N-62-20 (the Order), substantially expanding the availability of workers compensation to employees that contract COVID-19.[1]

Under California’s existing workers’ compensation system, for an injury to be covered by workers’ compensation, the death, illness or injury must “arise out of employment” or occur “during the course of employment.”
Continue Reading Workers’ compensation now presumptively applies to employee COVID-19 claims in California

The Los Angeles City Council adopted two ordinances on April 29 that will significantly limit changes that operators of hotels, entertainment and sports venues, and some commercial buildings will be permitted to make when they rehire employees following the COVID-19 shutdown, or in the event that one of those businesses is sold in the coming years.
Continue Reading Los Angeles adopts ordinances giving certain laid off workers “Right to Recall” and right to be retained during a change of control