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New York State Paid COVID-19 Leave – it is still around in 2023!

On March 18, 2020, New York State enacted legislation authorizing paid sick leave for employees who were subject to a mandatory or precautionary order of isolation or quarantine due to COVID-19. The law provided paid and unpaid sick leave with access to expanded paid family leave and temporary disability depending on the size of the employer. All employees, regardless of the size of their employer, were entitled to job protection upon return from this leave.


PMP is reminding you that the NYS Paid COVID-19 Leave is still in effect (there is no expiration date to this law) and employees may be eligible for paid leave in 2023.


Beginning August 24, 2022, the NYS Department of Health announced it is following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) isolation and precautions for people with COVID-19 guidance, which provides information to those who tested positive.


Below are the requirements for isolation (tested positive) and quarantine (exposure):


ISOLATION (Tested positive)

When someone has COVID-19, isolation is counted in days, as follows:


If you test positive for COVID-19, stay home for at least 5 days and isolate from others in your home.


If you had no symptoms

  • Day 0 is the day you were tested (not the day you received your positive test result)

  • Day 1 is the first full day following the day you were tested

  • If you develop symptoms within 10 days of when you were tested, the clock restarts at day 0 on the day of symptom onset

If you had symptoms

  • Day 0 of isolation is the day of symptom onset, regardless of when you tested positive

  • Day 1 is the first full day after the day your symptoms started

The employee can end isolation and return to work as follows:


If the employee had no symptoms

The employee ends isolation after day 5 and can return to work but must wear a mask until at least day 11.


If the employee had symptoms and the symptoms are improving

The employee may end isolation after day 5 if:


The employee is fever-free for 24 hours (without the use of fever-reducing medication).


If the employee had symptoms and the symptoms are NOT improving

The employee must continue to isolate until the employee is fever-free for 24 hours (without the use of fever-reducing medication) and the employee’s symptoms are improving.


Regardless of when isolation ends, until at least day 11- the employee must wear a mask at work when indoors.


EXPOSURE:

Employee must wear a mask at work for 10 full days.

Employee should watch for symptoms: Fever, cough, shortness of breath, other COVID-19 symptoms.


If the employee develops symptoms – the employee should immediately get tested and stay home until the employee gets the test result.

Negative result – return to work.

Positive result – follow isolation guidelines.


The employee should get tested on Day 6 (at least 5 full days after exposure), regardless of whether the employee has symptoms or not.


Negative result – continue wearing mask at work through day 10.


Positive result – follow isolation guidelines.


As of August 24, 2022, to be eligible for the COVID-19 paid sick leave benefits, payable for a maximum of three times (since COVID-19 began in March 2020), an employee must test positive for COVID-19. Employees are no longer entitled to this benefit for being exposed to COVID-19. The number of days employers are required to pay employees is based number of employees they have and the employer’s net annual income.


More information can be found at https://paidfamilyleave.ny.gov/COVID19 or by contacting PMP.


NYS Paid Vaccination Leave

On March 12, 2021 NY’s former Governor Cuomo signed a law (amending the New York Labor Law) that entitled employees to up to four hours of paid leave per COVID-19 vaccine dose. The law took effect immediately and the leave entitlement was set to expire on December 31, 2022. The law however has been extended and will not be repealed until December 31, 2023.


Employers with questions on these leaves should reach out to PMP for assistance.


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