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An employer may exclude those with Covid-19, or symptoms associated with the virus, from the workplace because “their presence would pose a direct threat to the health or safety of others,” according to the latest guidance from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
The U.S. Department of Labor forecasts that, if finalized, the rule could result in net savings for employers of almost $481 million per year, most of that due to reduced litigation costs and fewer benefits payments.
“It’s really difficult to gauge” how many businesses are going full-steam ahead, says a Bridgeport attorney. “We have a number of clients who have been planning for some time to begin bringing back their employees, and there are some who are waiting to see how things develop.”
Attorney Jonathan Orleans of Bridgeport firm Pullman & Comley says that, technically, a company doesn’t have to reimburse any of an employee’s expenses – “though the best practice is certainly to do so in the current situation, where the employer is specifically asking the employee to work from home.”