Answers Surrounding Employees and Closing Down Temporarily
March 25, 2020 Melissa Clary
How should I let my employees know we had to temporarily close our doors due to COVID-19?
It is always best practice to give your employees as much notice as possible given the situation. If you are closing your doors temporarily such that your employees will no longer have any work or pay for the weeks you are closed, please let your employees know they can file for Unemployment Benefits online. The 1-week usual waiting period has been waived. Employees are eligible immediately.
Temporary Business Closure
Many businesses are temporarily closing their doors to comply with state regulations. You address a few key points.
• Why the closure is happening
• Business closing date
• What to do with personal belongings, company property
• Changes made during the transition
• What to communicate to customers
• Unused benefits / final pay details / health insurance while out
• Job placement resources
• Unemployment benefits available
• General anticipated re-opening can be vague
• Whom should they contact with questions and how
What if my employee refuses to come into the office?
If your employee won’t come into the office, states they are unable to telework, and you have tried to address the employees concerns, you may be able to terminate this person or put them on leave without pay. This must be applied to all employees that are falling in this category.
Can I keep my employees benefits active if they are on furlough?
Yes, the employer must continue to pay the monthly health care premiums.
Can my employees collect unemployment if I don't lay them off?
Yes. The state allows employees to file "Partial Unemployment" which allows them to collect unemployment even if they are still employed.