Ohio is extending unemployment to those affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19)

At a press conference on Sunday, March 15, 2020, Ohio’s Lt. Governor John Husted announced that Ohio will be making a series of changes to the unemployment compensation system to assist workers who are displaced as a result of the coronavirus spread.  Previously, unemployment was not available for such individuals.  

The changes provide that those who are quarantined or ill are considered to be unemployed and will not be subject to requirements that they seek work in order to obtain unemployment benefits.  That will also apply in cases in which companies, such as restaurants and bars, determine they need to shut down operations.  The state will also waive a one-week delay in unemployment benefits and expedite payments.  In addition, the payments will not count against an employer’s unemployment rate.  For more information, please visit the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services' website.

Employers should also note that on March 14, 2020, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which may ultimately amend the FMLA to provide paid leave for issues relating the Coronavirus COVID-19.  That bill will be considered by the Senate this week. Updates on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act are available here. 

Your McDonald Hopkins attorneys are available to assist your organization in understanding and complying with the new law. 

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