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Removal of restrictions on COVID-19 leaves

By: Angel Berberena, Esq.

August 4, 2020

On August 4,2020, judge J. Paul Oetken of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York vacated some sections of the DOL Final Rule regarding eligibility for paid leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). See: New York v. U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 20-03020.

Specifically, the judge vacated sections of the DOL Final Rule that allowed some employers to deny workers paid sick leave if there was no work for them due to the pandemic-related economic downturn. The Court also ruled that the definition of “health-care provider” included in the Final Rule is “vastly overbroad” and eliminated the provisions requiring workers to get their employers’ consent before taking intermittent leave and to document the reasons for taking sick leave in advance.

This decision opens the door to many employees who were denied leave, including health-care providers, to seek paid time off if they are ill or need to care for children. Although the decision is very likely to be appealed and/or the DOL Final Rule amended, employers should take note of the new interpretation and of potential new claims by eligible employees.

Goldman Antonetti & Córdova, LLC stands ready to assist you and your business to adjust to Puerto Rico’s regulatory and legal changes. If you need further assistance in this area, please contact any of the following members of our Firm:

Angel Berberena 787.759.4143
Howard Pravda 787.759.4101
Vicente Antonetti 787.759.4112
Romel Meléndez 787.759.4115
Luis Ortiz Abreu 787.759.4110
Gabriel Quintero 787.759.4130
Javier Vazquez 787.759.4113


Although the information included in this document may concern legal issues, it is not a legal opinion or professional advice and clients shall not use it as such. We assume no responsibility or liability of any kind for any information contained herein, and we expressly disclaim all liability for any claim for damages arising from the use, reference to, or reliance on, such information. If legal or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought.

Goldman Antonetti & Cordóva, LLC | 787-759-8000 |