Employment Law: COVID-19 Question of the Week
In order to protect its workforce, what can an employer ask an employee who calls in sick?
On March 18, 2020, the EEOC published guidance for employers. During these unprecedented challenges, the EEOC explains what precautionary measures are permitted under the American with Disabilities Act. The EEOC was quick to point out that the ADA continues to apply during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the ADA will not interfere with or prevent the employers from following the guidelines and suggestions of the CDC or state/local public health authorities about steps employers should take regarding COVID-19. So, according the EEOC, employers may ask sick employees if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms including sore throat, fever, cough, shortness of breath, fever, and chills. The employer should remain mindful that all records concerning these reported symptoms must be kept as confidential medical records separately from the employee’s personnel file.
This update provides general information and does not provide tailored legal advice or establish an attorney-client relationship.