The Impact of Coronavirus on Employee Benefits and the Workplace: What Employers Need to Know

Webinar (ET)

Frank C. Morris, Jr., Member of the Firm, will co-present "The Impact of Coronavirus on Employee Benefits and the Workplace: What Employers Need to Know," a webinar hosted by American Law Institute (ALI).

During times of wide-reaching emergencies – whether natural disasters, financial downturns, or, as we currently face, pandemics – employers have a lot of questions about what their obligations are to their employees. These wide-ranging and often overlapping issues range from employee safety, paid leave, and workplace accommodations, to health insurance coverage, privacy, and emergency funds available through retirement plans.

This webcast will highlight the evolving concerns that most employers are trying to navigate right now. A panel will address the most critical employee benefits (retirement and health and welfare) as well as employment and labor law issues. 

This session provides a high-level, big picture discussion of both employee benefits and employment and labor issues at the forefront today. It will highlight the most recent federal laws and regulations in play (including the Families First Coronavirus Response Act), as well as what is still to come. The faculty will also address the intertwined benefit and labor/employment laws, preemption issues raised by the Supremacy and Interstate Commerce Clauses, as well as potentially available remedies.

Session topics include:

  • What health plans are required to cover under new legislation: COVID testing, what exactly is required to be covered, whether plans can limit to in-network providers
  • What health plans are covering: increased telemedicine, providing benefits for all employees (including non-participants)
  • Privacy: HIPAA updates on COVID guidance, how HIPAA interacts with EEOC guidance; international issues; digital/online privacy and security
  • Changes to HSA/FSA/HRA rules, including what can be paid before the deductible related to COVID
  • New 401(k) hardship distribution rules; waiver of 10% excise tax
  • Special new plan loan provisions
  • Accessing retirement money: expand in-service and other distribution options; hardship (non-COVID-19) withdrawals
  • 409A/issues with deferred compensation plans in light of reduced executive
  • Discrimination: Title VII, Civil Rights Act, and age
  • Safety: OSHA; environmental
  • Wage and hours laws
  • ADA access and discrimination
  • Termination, leave, furloughs, and layoffs: WARN, expanded FMLA, emergency paid sick leave, changes to short-term disability to account for quarantine leave, health plan issues to consider
  • Testing: GINA, state DNA, and biometric laws
  • Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and
  • Immigration
  • Labor laws: NLRA, RLA, state and local, right to work issues

For more information, visit ALI-CLE.org.