IMA COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Update - #35
The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association has been communicating directly with manufacturers across Illinois as the situation changes and will continue posting resources online at the IMA’s dedicated page / .

At the Governor's direction yesterday, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission adopted an egregious emergency rule that automatically presumes that the workplace was the cause of the virus if any worker becomes infected with COVID-19. This is a significant expansion of law through rulemaking and will significantly increase costs. The IMA is looking at all available recourse for stopping this rule. As shown below in the Q & A Section, the U.S. Department of Labor has indicated that employees who receive workers compensation benefits do not qualify for benefits under FFCRA.
The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association also signed a joint letter with the business community calling on the Governor to delay the minimum wage hike scheduled to take effect on July 1. 

The Governor noted the need for testing, tracing, and treatment in order to start re-opening the economy.

The Small Business Administration released approvals for the Paycheck Protection Act through April 13. More than 1 million loans totaling $247 billion have been approved to date including 44,453 loans in Illinois for $12.6 billion. 

Daily COVID-19 Results
Governor JB Pritzker held his daily press conference and announced:
  1. There are 1,222 new cases of coronavirus in Illinois.
  2. There are a total of 868 deaths related to coronavirus in Illinois, including 74 additional deaths announced today.
  3. A total of 23,247 cases have been confirmed in at least 87 of the 102 counties.
  4. There have been 110,616 individuals tested for coronavirus in Illinois.

Press Conference Key Updates

New or critical items of note that were discussed today by the Governor:
  • Illinois' doubling rate - the number of days it takes for case counts, hospitalizations or deaths due to coronavirus to double - has increased substantially, which is a a sign that we are flattening or slowing the growth of the curve. For example, on March 22, Illinois' doubling rate for new positive cases was 2 days, on April 12 it was 8.2 days.
  • Illinois has 30,000 total hospital beds and no region in the state is below 15% availability in general beds, ICU beds or ventilators, even though some individual hospitals may be at capacity.
  • In addition to general hospital beds, the number of ICU beds and ventilators that are occupied by COVID-19 patients has also begun to decrease.
  • Governor Pritzker warned that the curve will not flatten and may in fact rise again if individuals do not stay at home and adhere to social distancing recommendations. 
Question & Answer Section

The US DOL has made it clear in their FFCRA Q & A that if you are out of work and receiving workers compensation benefits, you are not eligible for benefits under the FFCRA:

#76. May I take paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave if I am receiving workers’ compensation or temporary disability benefits through an employer or state-provided plan?

In general, no, unless you were able to return to light duty before taking leave. If you receive workers’ compensation or temporary disability benefits because you are unable to work, you may not take paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave. However, if you were able to return to light duty and a qualifying reason prevents you from working, you may take paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave, as the situation warrants.
Mark Denzler
President & CEO
Illinois Manufacturers' Association
Disclaimer : The information in this email is provided for general informational purposes only as a benefit of your membership in the Illinois Manufacturers' Association. No information contained in this email should be construed as legal advice from the IMA or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney directly.