Vigilant Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law, HR, safety & workers' comp

Showing posts by Kandis Sells

Photo of Kandis Sells
Jun 03 2021
COVID-19Safety and Health  

WASHINGTON: Worker housing rules updated for vaccinated occupants

On May 28, 2021, Washington's Departments of Labor & Industries (L&I) and Health updated the existing COVID-19 (coronavirus) safety rules for temporary worker housing (TWH) in the agriculture industry to lift certain restrictions for fully vaccinated workers. These revisions coincide with updated agriculture workplace requirements issued by Governor Jay Inslee, adding exceptions for fully vaccinated…

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Apr 01 2021
Leave Laws  

WASHINGTON: Paid Family & Medical Leave benefits increase in 2021

Heads up, Washington employers: the maximum weekly benefit for the state’s Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) program has increased from $1,000 to $1,206 as of January 1, 2021. Each September, the Employment Security Department (ESD) is required to adjust the maximum weekly benefit amount for the following calendar year to 90…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Feb 18 2021
COVID-19Employee Benefits  

WASHINGTON: Unemployment benefits expand for high-risk workers

On February 8, 2021, Governor Jay Inslee signed SSB 5061, which expands Washington’s unemployment insurance benefits to high-risk individuals and members of their households, who voluntarily quit their jobs during a public health emergency such as the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD) can begin providing benefits to…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Jan 21 2021
Leave Laws  

Ninth Circuit decides definition of workweeks for FMLA entitlement

Employees who work a rotating schedule of one week on, one week off, may have their “off” weeks counted against their 12-week leave entitlement under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), according to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The court ruled on a dispute between the Department of Labor…

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Nov 19 2020
COVID-19Safety and Health  

WASHINGTON: Governor tightens COVID-19 restrictions statewide

On November 15, 2020, Governor Jay Inslee tightened down COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions throughout the state by significantly limiting social gatherings, recreation, and certain indoor activities through December 14, 2020. These latest restrictions roll back some of the reopened activities previously allowed during the pandemic, but they don’t replace any of the…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Nov 05 2020
COVID-19Leave LawsSafety and Health  

CDC modifies definition of “close contact” for exposure to COVID-19

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently changed its definition of “close contact” to determine potential exposure to COVID-19 (coronavirus). “Close contact” is now defined as a combined total of 15 minutes within a 24-hour period within six feet of someone infected with the virus. Previously, close contact was defined as a…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Oct 15 2020
Leave Laws  

WASHINGTON: More rule changes for Paid Family and Medical Leave

The Washington Employment Security Department (ESD) continues to tinker with the state’s Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) rules, finalizing more changes on October 2, 2020. These latest rules mainly relate to legislative changes passed this year in SHB 2614 and minor tweaks to a handful of definitions. The revised rules are…

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Oct 01 2020
COVID-19DisabilityLeave LawsWorkers’ Comp  

CALIFORNIA: Workers’ comp presumed for COVID-19 illness

California employees who test positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus) will have an easier time getting workers’ compensation benefits thanks to Senate Bill 1159, signed by Governor Gavin Newsom on September 17, 2020. As we previously reported, Governor Newsom issued an executive order in May creating this same presumption, but that order expired in…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Sep 17 2020
COVID-19Leave Laws  

DOL revises and reaffirms FFCRA rules

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued four revised FFCRA rules, effective September 16, 2020, and updated its FAQs to reflect these revisions. These revised rules are in direct response to a federal court decision that invalidated the previous versions of these four DOL rules on August 3, 2020.…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Aug 06 2020
COVID-19Leave Laws  

Federal court invalidates certain FFCRA rules

On August 3, 2020, a federal court in New York threw out a handful of key Department of Labor (DOL) rules for implementing the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). As we’ve previously reported, the FFCRA provides emergency sick leave and family and medical leave to employees who are unable to work…

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