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Return to Work Policies – Is Your Company Ready?

Employers of non-essential workers are gearing up for office re-openings all over the country.

Employers are anxious—and rightfully so—for things to return to normal as quickly as possible and for steady revenue streams to return. Unfortunately, until the pandemic is completely behind us, it is impossible for things to go back to the way they were prior to COVID-19—at least for the foreseeable future.

As businesses gradually re-open, employers should be thinking about implementing interim guidelines, policies, and procedures to minimize the risk that COVID-19 will impact business operations (yet again).

Implementing written policies can help with return to work logistical challenges; it can also help ensure the health and safety of employees and visitors; and it can help employers and businesses avoid lawsuits. Unfortunately, in focusing on the economics of getting businesses up and running again, many employers have not considered what an actual return to work in the “COVID-19 world” will look like—and all the while ensuring legal compliance across the spectrum of various state and federal employment laws, including the Occupational Safety and Health Act (“OSHA”) the Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”), Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”), and the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”)—just to name a few. For example:

  • Will employee temperatures be taken? If so, who is taking the temperatures? And how will employee confidentiality be maintained?
  • What protocols will be established regarding social distancing?

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Original article by: Adams and Reese LLP

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