There is no question that the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted business for many employers in California and throughout the United States and world. Whether your business is considered essential or not, it is important for employers to stay compliant with the law to prevent legal complaints and possible liability as they try to recover from the shutdown.
If your employees are working from home to keep your business going, there are some important things to remember. Non-exempt employees are still entitled to the same rest and meal breaks they would be if they were working on-site. Any guidance for teleworking should include information about these breaks and how an employee should clock out to take their breaks, as well as track their hours in general. Employers should be sure to properly compensate employees based on their hours and exemption status while working from home.
In addition, the law requires employers to reimburse employees for necessary business expenses, as well as any expenses incurred at the employer’s direction. Employers should also provide all necessary equipment for employees to work from home, though equipment of convenience does not have to be covered if it is not mandatory.
Employees have the right to take paid sick leave when warranted and to file for unemployment during the temporary shutdown of your business, as well as exercise their other rights under employment law. It is important to avoid any type of retaliatory action against such employees, as this can result in liability for your company down the line.
The Yudien Law Firm, P.C., advises and represents employers, and our Walnut Creek employment attorneys are here for your company in these confusing times. Call 925.472.0600 or contact us online for a consultation today.