Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers including Texas A&M University System members to provide two forms of paid leave to assist employees impacted by COVID-19:  Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act (EFMLA). 

FFCRA leave is accessible only when there is an assigned function/role that is capable of being performed either at an onsite or remote location, but the employee is unable to perform the assigned duties for certain, specified COVID-19-related reasons. 

Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act 

Provides up to 80 hours of paid sick leave for employees (ALL employee types: faculty, staff, students) who are unable to work from home and who meet one of six qualifying reasons related to COVID-19 

  1. The employee is subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID–19. 
  2. The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID–19. A self-imposed quarantine without medical advice does not qualify. 
  3. The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID–19 and is seeking a medical diagnosis. 
  4. The employee is caring for an individual (not specifically limited to family members) subject to or advised to quarantine or self-isolate. 
  5. The employee is caring for the employee’s child whose school or place of care is closed, or whose childcare provider is unavailable, due to COVID-19 precautions  
  6. The employee is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of the State. 

Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act

The EFMLA amends and expands the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), on a temporary basis, to provide qualifying employees 12 weeks of leave (job protection) if the employee is unable to work, including work-from-home, due to the need to care for the employee’s child (under 18 years of age) if the child’s school or place of care is closed or the child care provider is unavailable due to a public health emergency. A public health emergency is “an emergency with respect to COVID-19 declared by a Federal, State, or local authority.” 

Employees are eligible to take leave under the EFMLA Act if they have been employed at least 30 calendar days. This includes employees in any faculty, staff or student position.   

The FFCRA’s paid leave provisions are effective on April 1, 2020, and apply to leave taken between April 1, 2020, and December 31, 2020. These paid leave provisions are not retroactive.  Prior to April 1, 2020, members were encouraged to designate emergency leave to employees to account for non-productive hours due to reasons related to COVID-19. 

Forms:  

Managers/supervisors are encouraged to be aware of these provisions and forward any specific requests or questions to the Office of Human Resources, benefits@tamusa.edu.

Families First Coronavirus Act (FFCRA)