Does my Employer Have to pay me if I am Quarantined due to the Coronavirus?

With the current state of the world, you may be thinking about what you can expect if you are unable to go to work due to the Coronavirus. Employment and Labor laws can vary by state, and by county. Additionally, you may have a contract or collective bargaining agreement with your employer that determines what happens when you cannot show up to work due to a public health emergency. While your employer will most likely not require you to come to work if you are under quarantine, your employer may not be required to pay you for the time you are out.

Must your Employer pay you if you are not Working?

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), an employer may be required to pay you if you are a salary employee. Generally, if a salary employee performs at least some work during the seven-day workweek established by the employer, the law requires that the employee be paid their entire salary for that particular week. Exceptions may occur, as may be the case where the employer is open for business, but the employee chooses to stay home for the day and does not complete any work. Some employers may allow employees to work remotely while they are under quarantine so that the employee can continue to receive their salary.

On the other hand, employers are usually only required to pay hourly employees for hours actually worked. FLSA minimum-wage and overtime requirements only apply to hours worked in a workweek, and usually, employees who are not working are not entitled to a wage under the FLSA.

Ultimately, an employer may have a legal duty to keep paying employees due to an employment contract, a collective bargaining arrangement, or any regulation or procedure that can be enforced as a contract. Nevertheless, most employers will allow employees to take paid sick leave or another type of paid leave benefit if the employee is under quarantine. Additionally, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) may apply if an employee gets sick, but it does not guarantee that the employer will pay the employee while they are out.

Please be advised that the Families First Coronavirus Response Act has significantly altered how employers must handle the COVID-19 pandemic. Please read our blog post on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to be up to date on the most recent laws. 

EPGD Business Law is located in beautiful Coral Gables. Call us at (786) 837-6787, or contact us through the website to schedule a consultation.

*Disclaimer: this blog post is not intended to be legal advice. We highly recommend speaking to an attorney if you have any legal concerns. Contacting us through our website does not establish an attorney-client relationship.*

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Eric Gros-Dubois

Founding partner Eric Gros-Dubois established EPGD Business Law in 2013. With over a decade of experience expanding the firm and leading it to its current success, Eric now primarily manages the corporate division of EPGD. Given Eric’s educational background, holding both a JD and MBA, combined with his own unique experience of starting a business from scratch and growing it to a multi-million dollar firm, he brings a specialized and invaluable perspective to those seeking legal assistance for themselves and their businesses. Having now instilled his same values in our team of skilled corporate associates, Eric leads a firm that is always ready, willing, and equipped to handle any and every legal matter that a business owner may have.


*The following comments are not intended to be treated as legal advice. The answer to your question is limited to the basic facts presented. Additional details may heavily alter our assessment and change the answer provided. For a more thorough review of your question please contact our office for a consultation.

6 Responses

  1. I live in Georgia. I work for a health care agency. They required that I stay out of work for 7 days due to running a low grade fever for a couple of hours with no other systems. Now they are telling me that they will not pay me for that time and that I will have to use my personal time off for that time. They stated that they were exempt from paying their employees because “health care providers” are “exempt” from the COVID 19 laws. I am a social worker with a health care agency. Is this true?

  2. My employee has a son in day care and one of the parents of another child at that day care contracted corona virus my employee states he must be in a 14 day quarantine because of this.
    He is an hourly employee with no sick time available and no one is sick in his home from corona virus. Please advise

  3. I live in Kansas and work for a huge security company and have been sick for the last 3 days, I went to a doctor and he did a covid test, my employer says I have to quarantine for 14 day regardless of the outcome of the test. I have very little vacation time left, can I get unemployment while I am required to be off?




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