COVID-19 Crisis: Country Updates (Updated 24/01)

Emily Kuhnert January 24, 2021
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Key events

Country Specific Posts

Below you can find links to posts on specific countries detailing the economic and legislative measures introduced by that country as well as COVID-19 crisis guides. For countries not listed below visit the blog.

Live News Updates

January 24, 2021

Poland

The Ministry of Finance once again postponed the collection of withholding taxes (personal and corporate) in response to COVID-19.  The new collection date will be June 30, 2021.

Hong Kong

The Kowloon peninsula area of Hong Kong is in a complete lockdown due to an outbreak of COVID-19 in the area. Some 10,00 residents must stay home and about 70 buildings are now closed. The lockdown will only be lifted once a majority of the residents are tested and results have been determined.

January 21, 2021

China

Beijing- Residents of Daxing are restricted from leaving the district without presenting a negative PCR test that has been taken within the last 72 hours. In addition, starting Sunday, January 24, schools in Beijing will return to remote learning.

Russia

Moscow- Starting Friday, January 22, 2021, some COVID-19 restrictions in Moscow will be relaxed. While state-run colleges will continue with remote learning, colleges will be able to reopen. In addition, cultural and entertainment establishments will be able allowed 50% capacity.

Bars and restaurants will still need to close early and employers will need to limit capacity to 30% of their workforce.

January 20, 2021

Israel

Israel has announced that the current lockdown restrictions have been extended to January 31, 2021.

Germany

Germany has extended their current lockdown until February 14, 2021, due to concern over the new COVID-19 variant. Restrictions include:

  • The closure of non-essential shops and restaurants
  • Schools will remain closed.
  • Strict medical mask enforcement in public spaces including public transportation. Previously, non-medical masks such as those made of fabric were permitted.
  • Encouragement to allow employees to work from home

January 19, 2021

Australia

Australia has extended the JobKeeper payment to March 28, 2021. If the employer experiences turnover from January 4th, 2021 to March 2, 2021, the employer will need to fill out a form to determine their eligibility.

Starting January 4, 2021, employers are required to pay their employees the amount they are entitled to from the JobKeeper scheme (either 1,000 AUD or 650 AUD)

Japan

Okinawa was added to the growing list of regions that have declared a state of emergency in Japan. Measures include restaurants and bars closing by 8 pm and encouraging residents to refrain from non-essential outings.

Germany

The German government has proposed to extend the current lockdown restrictions until February 15, 2021. Mandatory mask-wearing in public spaces has also been proposed, as well as improving assistance for companies that have been affected by the lockdown restrictions.

Norway

Norway has announced the easing of restrictions.  Residents will now be permitted to allow up to 5 guests in their homes. However, bars and restaurants are still banned from serving alcohol.

Colombia

Starting today, night curfews in Bogota will go into effect for 2 weeks and are currently set to expire on January 28, 2021. Residents will be required to stay in their homes from 8 pm to 4 am.

 

January 17, 2021

Israel

Israel will possibly extend the current lockdown as the infection rate is still high. The current lockdown is set to expire on January 21, 2021.

Italy

Italy is discussing the possibility of extending the possible ban on employment terminations until June 30, 2021.  Currently, the ban is set to expire on March 31, 2021.

January 14, 2021

Russia

Starting Monday, January 18, 2021, in-class learning will resume. Apart from this change, the current lockdown restrictions have been extended until January 21, 2021.  The current restrictions include the closure of bars and restaurants and mask-wearing in public places.

Colombia

The current COVID-19 restrictions in Colombia that were set to expire on January 16, 2021, have been extended until February 28, 2021. Restrictions include limited ability to travel and give mayors the ability to impose their own restrictions on mobility as needed.

Switzerland

Switzerland has announced new restrictions. Employers must allow their employees to work from home when possible, however, if there is more than 1 person in the workplace, masks must be worn. In addition, gatherings are limited to 5 people.

January 13, 2021

United States

Starting January 26, 2021, all travelers flying to the US must be able to present a negative PCR test within 72 hours of departure.

California- The stay at home order for Sacramento and surrounding areas have been lifted. This mandate was initially imposed on December 10, 2020, and included a ban on the opening of malls, beauty salons, and other recreational and non-essential establishments.

The San Francisco Bay Area, Central Valley, and Southern California are still under strict stay-at-home orders.

Japan

In addition to Tokyo and the surrounding area, Japan has announced a state of emergency in Osaka, Kyoto, Hyogo, Kansai, Aichi and Gifu.

January 12, 2021

Malaysia

Malaysia has declared a state of emergency and is currently set to last until August 1, 2021.

China

China has imposed a lockdown on the city of Langfang starting today.  Residents will be under strict home quarantine measures for 7 days and subject to a PCR test.

 South Africa

South Africa has announced that the current restrictions will be extended the current COVID-19 restrictions that were set to expire on Thursday, January 15th, 2021 as there has been an increase in infection rate due to the new variant. This extension is set to last until February 15, 2021.  Restrictions include:

  • Restrictions on movement from 9 pm to 5 am local time, with exception to things like seeking medical attention. Those in violation are subject to a fine and/or imprisonment.
  • Closure of leisure establishments (i.e cinemas, gyms, museums, restaurants, etc.) by 8 pm
  • Closure of land borders
  • A maximum of 70% capacity on public transportation
  • Ban on the sale of alcohol
  • When possible, employees must work from home.

January 11, 2021

China

Beijing- Starting today, January 11, 2021, a strict lockdown was imposed on Beijing and the surrounding area. Residents are banned from leaving their residents until they have been tested for COVID-19.

Malaysia

Starting Wednesday, January 13, 2021, Malaysia will impose a partial lockdown in Penang, Selangor, Melaka, Johor, Sabah, Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya, and Labuan. The restrictions include a ban on travel between these districts and movement will be limited to 10 kilometers from one’s place of residence.

This lockdown is currently set to expire on January 26, 2021.

January 10, 2021

Cyprus

Cyprus has announced a 3-week lockdown due to the rise in COVID-19 cases starting at 5 am local time today.  Shops, malls, restaurants, and beauty salons were forced to shut.  Residents are only permitted to leave their homes twice a day and must send a text to authorities before leaving their place of residence. One may leave to exercise, buying groceries, or visiting a doctor or pharmacy. In addition, schools will move to remote learning.

January 7, 2021

Israel

Israel imposed an extension if its current lockdown and new restrictions for an additional two weeks starting today, January 7, 2021. In addition to the current regulations, these have been added:

  • Employees are barred from entering the workplace, with the exception of places that have been deemed essential. Employers may allow employees to enter the workplace only when the employee is essential to the maintenance or functioning of the workplace.
  • Gatherings of up to 5 people in a closed area and 10 in an open space will be permitted
  • 20 people for weddings, funerals, and circumcisions
  • Those who have purchased a plane ticket after the restrictions take effect will not be able to fly, however, there are a few exceptions.
  • Schools will be closed, with the exception of special education programs

Japan

Japan has officially announced a state of emergency in Tokyo and neighboring Saitama, Chiba, and Kanagawa.  The state of emergency will begin Friday, January 8, 2021, and is set to end on February 7, 2021. Restaurants and bars will be forced to close by 8 pm. In addition, non-essential outings are discouraged, and more employees will be asked to work from home.

Unites States

California- California is asking residents to not travel more than 120 miles for non-essential travel. In addition, visitors from out of state are being discouraged from entering California for non-essential travel.

January 6, 2021 

Germany

Germany has announced that non-essential travel will be limited to a 15-kilometer radius.  This new restriction will apply to areas where more than 200 new cases have been found for every 10,000 people over a seven day period.

In addition, the current restrictions that are in place are set to expire on January 10, 2021, however, today there will be renewed discussions on possible extending the restrictions.

Canada

The government announced that those returning from non-essential travel (i.e holiday travel) to Canada will no longer be eligible for the 500 CAD a week sickness benefit under the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) intended to assist in covering for the need to quarantine upon arrival to Canada. The intention of the CRSB are for

January 5, 2021 

United Kingdom

England, Scotland, and Wales have imposed a new lockdown due to the rising infection rate of the new COVID-19 variant.  The lockdown includes limiting the leaving of one’s home for things other than essentials, such as grocery shopping, seeking medical attention, or exercise.  In addition, primary and secondary schools will be forced to close to students except for children whose parents are essential workers. The lockdown is set to expire on February 15th in England, and at the end of January for Scotland.

Italy

Current restrictions are set to expire Thursday, January 7, 2021, however, has decided to keep current restriction in place but will relax restrictions over the weekdays. Italy will return to their previous 3-tier system so that different regions will have different restrictions depending on necessity.

The reopening of high schools at 50% capacity will be postponed until Monday, January 11, 2021.

January 4, 2021

Japan

The government has requested that those in the Tokyo and metropolitan areas from venturing outside of one’s home for non-essential outings.

Japan is considering announcing a state of emergency in some regions of the country.  The state of emergency would apply to Tokyo, Chiba, Saitama, and Kanagawa.

In addition, changes are being discussed in allowing local governments to begin to enforce COVID-19 restrictions more harshly.

Hong Kong

Schools in Hong Kong are suspending in-class learning until February 15, 2021.

Currently, restaurants must close by 6 pm and salons and gyms are closed.  These restrictions have been renewed to remain in place for an additional 2 weeks.

South Korea

South Korea has restricted all gatherings across the country to 4 people as the infection rate continues to rise.

January 3, 2021 

United States

Wyoming – Starting January 9, 2021, bars and restaurants in Wyoming will be able to resume operating. In addition, gyms will be able to increase capacity from the current 10% to 25%.

New Zealand

Starting January 15, 2021, New Zealand will require travelers from the United States and the United Kingdom to present a negative COVID-19 test before entering the country.  As of current, travelers from these countries are required to present a negative test within 24 hours of entering the country.

December 29, 2020

Indonesia

Indonesia has announced that starting January 1, 2021, all foreign nationals will be banned from entering the country for 2 weeks.

Netherlands

All travelers must be able to present a negative COVID-19 test at least 72 hours before entering the country.

December 27, 2020

South Korea

South Korea has announced that the current social distancing measures will be extended to January 3, 2021. After the 3rd, the government will reassess the situation to see if more measures will need to be implemented.

Israel

At 5 pm today, Israel will enter into a 2-week lockdown.

  • One cannot go further than 1 kilometer from their place of residence. Some exceptions include going to a permitted workplace, seeking medical treatment, or individual exercise.  Those found in violation face a 500 NIS fine.
  • Ban on entering another’s place of residence
  • Closure of all non-essential shops
  • Kindergarten-4th grade and 11-12th grade will continue in-class learning, while grades 5-10 will be moved to remote learning.
  • Workplaces with 10 or more employees must restrict capacity to 50% or a total of 10 employees, whichever is higher.

Restrictions are set to expire on January 9, 2021.

United States

The US is now requiring all travelers from the United Kingdom to test negative for COVID-19 before departing from the UK.

December 24, 2020

Israel

Israel announced a 2-week lockdown that will begin 5 pm Sunday, December 27th, and is set to last for 2 weeks.

Lockdown rules have yet to be approved, however, the following are proposed:

  • Restaurants will be allowed to offer delivery services
  • Movement will be restricted to 1 kilometer from one’s home
  • Public transportation will be limited to 50% capacity
  • Gatherings will be limited to 10 people indoors and 20 people outdoors
  • In-class learning will be allowed for Kindergarten-4th 11th and 12th-grade students will have in-class learning from 8 am to 1 pm
  • Individual sports
  • Individuals will be restricted from entering other’s homes, with exception of immediate family members
  • Workplaces that do not accept customers will be limited to 50% capacity
  • Shops and cultural establishments will be closed

United Kingdom

The UK has issued a travel ban starting December 24, 2020, at 9 am local time for anyone who has been in South Africa for the past 10 days due to a possible new strain of COVID-19. The exceptions are British and Irish nationals as well as visa holders.

United States

New York – New York began a mandatory quarantine for all travelers arriving from the United Kingdom.  Those who are in breach of the quarantine will face a fine of $1,000 USD per day.

Czech Republic

Starting Sunday, December 27, 2020, the Czech Republic will impose a stricter curfew that will begin at 9 pm.  All non-essential shops will be forced to close.  Bars and restaurants are to remain closed.

India

The state of Karnataka imposed a curfew banning non-essential travel from the hours of 10 pm to 6 pm and is set to last until January 2, 2021.

December 23, 2020 

South Korea

South Korea has announced that they will be suspending all flights from the United Kingdom until the end of the year.

United States

Tennessee- The Governor of Tennessee has extended the state of emergency order until February 27, 2021.

December 22, 2020

Israel

Starting at 10 pm Wednesday, December 24, 2020, Israel will close its borders to non-Israeli passport holders. In addition, all Israelis returning from abroad will go into a mandated quarantine in a designated hotel.  Returning citizens must either quarantine for 14 days or 10 days with 2 negative COVIS-19 tests.

Guatemala

Guatemala has barred all travelers who have visited the United Kingdom within the past 14 days due to the new COVID-19 strain.

Thailand

Bangkok- Starting yesterday, December 21, 2020, all schools in Bangkok were shuttered and are set to reopen on January 4, 2021.  In addition, those who work in Bangkok and commute from Samut Sakhon must work from home.

Trinidad and Tobago

Travelers coming from the UK will be required to enter into a mandatory 14-day quarantine in a designated facility.

United States

The US Congress has passed a COVID-19 relief package that will grant $600 USD per adult, with an additional payment for those unemployed due to the virus.

December 16, 2020 

United Kingdom

Starting today, December 16, 2020, London’s COVID-19 restriction level is raised to tier 3. Restaurants, bars, and theaters will be forced to close.  Bars and restaurants will be able to offer take out services.

December 15, 2020 

Netherlands 

The Netherlands announced a national lockdown that started December 14, 2020 and is set to last until January 19, 2021.

December 14, 2020 

Germany

Starting Wednesday, December 23, 2020, Germany will impose a lockdown where all non-essential shops and schools will close. In addition, social gatherings will be limited to 5 people from two different households.  The lockdown is set to end on January 10, 2021.

United Kingdom

The UK is planning on reviewing all of their COVID-19 measures that have been put in place as the infection rate rises.

Israel

Starting Tuesday, December 15, 2020, rules on quarantine will change in Israel.

Those suspected of being infected will have to take a test at the beginning of the isolation period followed by another one 9 days later.

In addition, the mandatory 14-day quarantine will be shortened to 10 days.

Japan

Japan has announced that they will be holding a COVID-19 task force meeting in order to discuss new possible measures.

South Korea

South Korea will begin discussing the possibility of increasing its COVID- 19 measures to level 3 which would restrict social gatherings to 10 people or less.

December 9, 2020

Denmark

Denmark has announced the closure of restaurants, bars, and cultural establishments.  These restrictions go into effect today and are set to last until the end of the year.

Canada

Manitoba- Manitoba has extended the COVID-19 Restrictions until January however, will loosen some restrictions that would allow families to gather for the holidays.

Drive-in services will be allowed, so long that members of the same household are in the same vehicle and do not leave them.

Israel 

Israel had previously announced a nightly curfew, however, this has been put on hold for now as the legality of a night curfew has been put to question.

Starting today, Wednesday, December 9, 2020, malls and open markets, and museums will be allowed to open.

December 8, 2020

Hong Kong

Hong Kong has announced new restrictions in an attempt to battle COVID-19.

Restaurants will only be able to offer to take out between the hours of 6 pm and 5 am. In-house dining will be restricted to 50% capacity.

Sports facilities will be closed until December 23, 2020.

These new rules go into effect Thursday, December 10, 2020.

December 7, 2020

France

The French government has announced that the current lockdown (since October 30th) may be lifted on December 15, 2020, pending a lower infection rate of less than 5,000 per day.

United States

New York- Pre-School and Kindergarten- 5th grade will resume in-class learning today. Special needs students of all ages will return to in-class learning on Thursday, December 10, 2020.

Canada

British Colombia – Lockdown has expired today.

December 6, 2020 

Australia

Victoria- Victoria has announced some easing of restrictions that will begin to roll out.

Starting Monday, December 7, 2020, homes in Victoria will be able to have up to 30 visitors per day, and gatherings of up to 100 people will be able to take place outdoors.

Starting January 11, 2021, private sector companies will be able to allow 50% capacity in the workplace.  Right now, the capacity stands at 25%.

Public sector employees will continue to work from home. However, this will change on January 11, 2021, where 25% capacity will be allowed in the workplace. On February 8, 2021, this will change to 50% capacity.

Mask wearing in public spaces is still required.

December 3, 2020 

Germany

Germany announced that restrictions will be extended from December 20, 2020, to January 10, 2021.

Bars and restaurants are to remain closed and rules on social gatherings of 5 people from 2 households remain unchanged. However, rules are expected to be relaxed during Christmas.

December 1, 2020

Netherlands

Starting today, the Dutch government has made masks in public spaces mandatory for those over the age of 13. Those without masks are subject to a fine of 95 euros.

November 30, 2020 

Venezuela

Starting today, quarantine measures will be suspended and curfews that have been imposed with towns on the Colombian and Brazilian borders will be lifted.

United States

California– Los Angeles starts a 3-week stay at home order today. The order asks residents to stay at home and wear face masks in public spaces.

November 25, 2020

Hong Kong

Starting Thursday, November 26, 2020, Karaoke bars, restaurants, bathhouses, clubs, and other entertainment establishments will be forced to close.

November 24, 2020

Canada 

British Columbia- British Columbia announced that the lockdown will be extended to December 7, 2020.  This includes mandatory masks in pubic indoor spaces as well as limiting social gatherings to the members of one’s household.

November 23, 2020

Pakistan  

Starting Thursday, November 26, 2020, Pakistan will close all schools until January 11, 2021. From Thursday to December 24, 2020, home learning will be imposed.

South Korea

Seoul- Seoul has announced an “emergency period” where more restrictions will be imposed.  The new restrictions will go into effect on November 24, 2020.

  • Public transportation will run at 20% capacity after 10 pm
  • Gatherings are limited to 10 people
  • Masks are required for indoor activities
  • Schools can operate at 33% capacity
  • Restaurants can offer delivery only after 9 pm

United States

California- Starting on November 25, 2020, at 10 pm, restaurants, wineries, breweries, and bars in Los Angeles will be forced to close as COVID-19 cases rise. However, take out, drive-through and deliveries will still be possible.

November 22, 2020 

Canada

Toronto- Toronto will impose a 28- day lockdown starting Monday, November 23, 2020.

  • Indoor gatherings will be limited to members of the same household, outdoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people.
  • Retail stores will be able to offer pickup and delivery only, residents will not be able to shop in-store.
  • Pharmacies and grocery stores will be able to operate at 50% capacity

United Kingdom

The curfew for bars and restaurants will be extended from 10 pm to 11 pm.  In addition, more restrictions are expected to be announced Monday, November 23, 2020.

Australia

Victoria- Starting tonight, restrictions in Victoria will begin to ease.

  • A maximum of 50 people will be allowed at public gatherings
  • 150 people will be allowed inside entertainment establishments, such as movie theatres and museums.
  • Up to 150 people will be allowed for indoor weddings, funerals, and religious ceremonies.

November 19, 2020

United States

New York- The mayor of New York City announced that starting today, Thursday, November 19, 2020, public schools will be closed due to the rise in infection rate.

Japan

Tokyo- Tokyo raised the COVID-19 alert level to the highest level (4). Level 4 alert includes stricter social distancing and mask-wearing, and more limitations on public gatherings.

November 18, 2020

Austria

As of November 17, 2020, Austria begins to enforce a stricter lockdown.

  • Residents can only leave their homes if they are going to work, shopping for basic necessities, or for seeking medical treatment.
  • Grocery stores, pharmacies, and banks will be able to stay open.
  • Bars and restaurants will be forced to close
  • Schools will move to remote learning.

Australia

South Australia– Starting Thursday, November 19, a six-day lockdown will begin for residents in South Australia.

  • Residents will have to stay at home
  • Masks will be mandatory in public
  • Stores, restaurants, and pubs will be closed and will not be allowed to offer take out.
  • Travel within the region will be restricted.

After the initial 6 days, an additional 8 days will follow with lessened restrictions.

United States:

Montana– A statewide mask mandate was announced. Restaurants and bars can operate at a 50% capacity but must close by 10 pm. In addition, 6 people will be limited per table. Public gatherings will be limited to 25 people.

Ohio- Starting Thursday, November 19, 2020, Ohio will begin to enforce a curfew between the hours of 10 pm and 5 am. This curfew is set to last for 3 weeks.

Illinois- Illinois announced that children will be able to go back to school.  Starting January 11, 2021, students from Pre-kindergarten will be able to go back to school. From February 1, 2021, grades Kindergarten- 9th grade will be able to go back to the classroom.

Pennsylvania- Starting Friday, November 20, 2020, Pennsylvania will begin to require out of state travelers to have a negative COVID-19 test before entering the state.  This rule will not apply to out of state residents who travel to Pennsylvania for work or medical treatment.

November 17, 2020 

South Korea

Starting Thursday, November 19, 2020, Seoul and surrounding areas must abide to stricter social distancing rules.

Restaurants will be required to install dividers between tables

Bars and wedding venues will be limited to one person per 4 square meters

Israel

Israel has announced that children in grades 5-6 will return to in class learning on November 24, and grades 11-12 will return on December 1, 2020.

November 16, 2020

November 16, 2020

Germany

The German government will discuss adding new restrictions today. More information to follow once the restrictions are announced.

Oregon

On Wednesday, November 18, 2020,new restrictions will go in to effect:

  • Social gatherings will be limited to 6 people
  • Bars and restaurants will only be able to offer delivery or take out.
  • Grocery and retail stores will be limited to 75% capacity
  • Gyms will be closed

Washington State

New restrictions starting Monday, November 16, 2020:

Indoor social gatherings will no longer be allowed unless all attendees have been in quarantine for 14 days prior to the gathering or have quarantined for 7 days and have a negative COVID-19 test.

  • Outdoor social gatherings will be limited to 5 people
  • Restaurants may offer outdoor seating or take out
  • Grocery and retail establishments will be limited to 25% capacity.
  • Indoor gyms or entertainment establishments will be prohibited.

November 11, 2020

United States 

California- Sacramento, Stanislaus and San Diego moved to impose harsher restrictions as COVID-19 cases rise.  New restrictions include the closure of non-essential businesses.

Wisconsin– The governor of Wisconsin signed an executive order asking residents to stay home.  In addition, he announced that legislation will be introduced to help financially relieve those who have been affected.

November 10, 2020

Australia

Victoria announces that parents of 4-year olds will receive free Kindergarten in 2021. The government is planning on spending 169 million AUD in an effort to help parents get back to work.

November 9, 2020

Utah

The governor of Utah has declared a state of emergency.  In addition, a mask mandate was issued where all Utahns must wear face masks in public, at work, or within 6 feet of others.

Canada

British Columbia – In Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraiser Health regions, new restrictions were announced and will be enforced for the next 2 weeks:

  • Social engagements with individuals outside of one’s immediate household are to be avoided
  • Businesses like gyms or physical fitness establishments must close
  • Religious gatherings are limited to 50 people

November 5, 2020 

Italy

Starting Friday, November 6, 2020, regions Calabria, Lombardy, Piedmont and Valle d’Aosta in Italy will be marked as red zones under the country’s new “traffic light” system. Puglia and Sicily will be marked as orange and the rest of the country yellow. This system will be in place until December 3, 2020.

The traffic light system works as follows:

Yellow:

  • Those in zones marked as yellow will be ordered to stay at home from the hours or 10 pm to 5 am.
  • Public transportation will work at 50% of the maximum capacity
  • Cultural centers such as museums will be closed
  • School children over the age of 6 must wear a mask
  • Bars and restaurants must close by 6 pm but will be able to offer takeaway and delivery services

Orange:

  • Those living in orange zones will not be able to leave the region, with the exception to work or seeking medical attention.
  • Bars and restaurants will be able to offer take out or delivery only.

Red:

  • People residing in red zones will not be able to leave their place of residence at all
  • All shops will be closed, except for those deemed as essential.

Greece

The Prime Minister of Greece is expected to announce lockdown measures today as the number of COVID-19 cases has increased.

Kenya

Kenya has extended its curfew to last until January 3, 2020. Kenyans must remain home from the hours of 10 pm to 4 am.

Restaurants and bars will be forced to close at 9 pm.

November 4, 2020 

Italy 

Starting tomorrow, November 5, 2020, a curfew from 10 pm to 5 am will be imposed. Restaurants will be able to remain open until 6 pm, however, after 6 pm, restaurants will only be allowed to offer take out or delivery.  In addition, public transportation will be capped at 50% capacity. Based on region and severity of infections, other restrictions may be imposed.

United Kingdom 

As of midnight tonight, the UK will go into lockdown.

November 3, 2020 

Hungary

Hungary is considering a second lockdown.  A decision is expected to be made within the next few days.

November 1, 2020

United Kingdom

From Thursday, November 5, the UK will be going into a 4-week lockdown. Restaurants, pubs, bars, gyms, and all non-essential shops will be closed.

In addition, the wage guarantee that would pay 80% of employees’ wages will be extended until the end of November.

Belgium

Starting Sunday, November 1, 2020, Belgium will go into a 6-week lockdown and is scheduled to end December 13, 2020.  All non-essential establishments will be closed, however, delivery and store pick-up will be possible.  Hairdressers, beauticians, and any profession that would require close contact with another individual will also be closed.

Monaco

From Saturday, October 31, 2020, Monaco began to impose a curfew from the hours of 8 pm to 6 am.  The curfew is set to be in place for 1 month.

October 29, 2020

Germany

Germany is imposing a 4-week partial lockdown where bars, restaurants, and entertainment facilities such as cinemas and theaters will be closed.  Schools and retail shops will remain open.  This will go in to effect Monday, November 2, 2020.

France 

Starting Friday, October 30, 2020, France will also begin a second lockdown.  One may only leave their home for medical treatment or essential work.  All non-essential establishments will be closed, however, factories and schools will remain open.

October 28, 2020

Czech Republic

The Czech government has announced that children will not be returning to the classroom on November 2, as expected.  In addition, the government has requested that Parliament extend the state of emergency until December 3, 2020.

October 27, 2020

Russia

As of Wednesday, October 28, 2020, Russia will begin enforcing a new mask mandate. One will be required to wear a mask in public areas, on public transportation, in parking lots, and on elevators.

In addition, restaurants and bars will be able to be open from the hours of 6 am and 11 pm.

October 26, 2020 

Australia

Victoria- Starting Wednesday, October 28, 2020, Victoria will begin to ease the lockdown restrictions.

  • People will be able to travel 25 kilometers from their place of residence
  • Restaurants, bars, and retail stores will be able to open
  • Indoor gatherings will be restricted to 20 people, while outdoor gatherings will be restricted to 50

Spain

As of yesterday, Spain has declared a “state of emergency.” With exception of the Canary Islands, from Sunday, a curfew will be enforced nationwide where people must be home from the hours of 11 pm to 6 am.

In addition, travel will be restricted and gatherings will be limited to 6 people.

Slovakia

On Saturday, October 24, 2020, new restrictions were implemented.  Residents will not be able to leave their homes unless they have a negative COVID-19 test except for the hours between 1 am and 5 am.

Exceptions to this rule are:

  • To go get a COVID-19 test
  • Food shopping
  • Seeking medical care
  • Seeking care for a pet or waking a pet within 100 meters of one’s place of residence
  • Attending a funeral
  • Going to the post office

In addition, all in-class schools will shudder until November 27, 2020, except for nurseries, kindergartens, and up to 4th grade.

October 22, 2020

Italy

As of midnight on Saturday, October 24, 2020, a curfew on the region of Lazio will be implemented. the curfew will be from the hours of midnight to 5 am for 30 days and all movement will be restricted, excluding work or health reasons.

Ireland

Ireland has moved to level 5 that is set to be in effect for the next 6 weeks.

  • Except for emergency personnel, everyone is requested to work from home e
  • Social gatherings are prohibited, even in one’s home or garden
  • Exercise in a park near one’s home is permitted
  • Schools and childcare services will remain open
  • Bars and restaurants will only be permitted to offer takeout.

United States

Virginia- The new order signed by the governor mandates masks indoors. Violators of this mandate risk a fine of $500 USD.

The governor is expected to sign more orders relating to the COVID-19 response in the coming days.

October 21, 2020 

United States 

Illinois- Starting Friday, October 23, bars and restaurants in DuPage, Kane, Will, and Kankakee counties will be prohibited from offering indoor service.

In addition, some counties will be prohibited from gatherings of more than 25 people starting Thursday, October 22, 2020.

October 19, 2020 

Switzerland 

Yesterday, the government of Switzerland announced new restrictions that go into effect today, October 19, 2020:

  • Gatherings of more than 15 people in public places are prohibited
  • Masks must be worn in all public indoor places.  This is an extension of a rule that was put in place earlier this year, where those over 12 years of age must wear a mask on public transportation.
  • For private gatherings of 15 people, food may only be consumed while being seated and masks must be worn when standing up.  In addition, the contact details of the attendees must be recorded.
  • Restaurants, bars, and clubs may only serve food and beverage to seated guests

October 15, 2020

France

Starting Saturday, October 17, 2020, a curfew in Paris, Aix-en-Provence, Marseille, Grenoble, Montpellier, Toulouse, Saint Etienne, Lille and Lyon will be enforced. The curfew will begin from 9 pm and last till 6 am until further notice. Those found breaking curfew will be subject to a 135 Euro fine.

Portugal 

As of Wednesday, October 14, 2020, Portugal has announced “a state of calamity” and more restrictions are expected to be announced.

October 13, 2020

Czech Republic

Starting Wednesday, October 14, new restrictions in the Czech Republic will be enforced.

  • Masks in public places will now be mandatory
  • Gatherings will be limited to 6 people
  • Bars and restaurants will be forced to close
  • Office hours for public places will be limited to 5 hours a day, two days a week

United Kingdom

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom announced that assistance will be expanded for businesses that were affected by COVID-19, granting 2/4 of wages (capped at 3,000 GBP) per month.

In places where the alert level is ‘very high’ which from tomorrow will include Liverpool will face extra restrictions, such as the closure of pubs, bars, and gyms. These measures will be re-evaluated in 4 weeks.

October 12, 2020

South Korea

South Korea has loosened social distancing measures to Level 1:

  • There are no limits on indoor or outdoor gatherings, however, bars and clubs will be obliged to only allow 1 person for every 4 square meters
  • Facemasks are required.  As of November 13, 2020, a fine of 100,000 KRW will be issued to those in violation of this rule.
  • Schools will operate at 2/3 capacity, however, may be adjusted by region based on the infection rate.
  • Places of worship will be allowed to run at 30% capacity

Restrictions for Seoul will still have higher restrictions as the infection rate is higher.

Israel 

Israel’s lockdown has been extended to October 18, 2020. In addition, the Health Ministry has unveiled a 4-month plan that will slowly ease the lockdown restrictions.  The plan proposes target dates of when more restrictions will be lifted, however, may be adjusted based on the number of positive tests.  The first stage will begin October 18, 2020, but is contingent on the number of new cases to be less than 2,000.

 

October 8, 2020

India

Delhi – In an attempt to curb the economic blow due to COVID-19, restrictions on restaurant operations have been lifted.  Restaurants will be able to operate 24 hours a day.

United Kingdom

New restrictions are expected to be announced next week as the UK has been experiencing a continued spike in infections.

Washington, D.C., United States

The mayor of Washington D.C has extended the emergency health order to December 31, 2020.

October 7, 2020

New York, United States 

Hotspot areas where there is a rise in COVID-19 cases will see a tightening of restrictions which include the closing of schools and businesses with the exception of take out food services.  In addition, gatherings will be limited to 25% of total occupancy for houses of worship or capped at 10 people.

Wisconsin, United States

The governor of Wisconson issued an order that limits occupancy of a room to 25%.

Israel 

The Israeli government has extended the emergency lockdown to October 13, 2020. Measures include the limit of gatherings to 20 people and the inability to travel more than 1 kilometer with the exception of for getting food, medical reasons, or going to work.

October 5, 2020 

Spain

As of 10 pm October 2, 2020, Madrid has gone into lockdown and will be required to stay at home, except for going to work, going to classes, or legal proceedings. In addition, restaurants and bars will be allowed 50% capacity but must close by 11 pm and indoor and outdoor gatherings will be limited to 6 people.

Russia

Starting today, October 5, 2020, Moscow will begin to enforce companies to allow at least 30% of their workforce to work remotely. In addition, those over the age of 65 will need to isolate. Lastly, more restrictions are expected to be announced as the infection rate has increased.

United Kingdom

As the infection rate has risen in the UK, the Prime Minister has announced that they will need to consider tighter restrictions if the rate continues to rise.

September 29, 2020

Israel

Israel has announced that the government does not see the possibility of the current lockdown to last as initially planned and will have no choice but to extend it. On Wednesday, September 30, the coronavirus cabinet will convene to discuss, among other things, a gradual lifting of the current restrictions from the current lockdown.

Australia

Victoria – In Victoria, lockdown rules will begin to be lifted.  This will include the return to school for primary schools and harsher rules on mask-wearing, changes in workplace rules will be relaxed to allow some to go back to work, and more non-urgent medical care will be able to take place face to face.  In addition, the Prime Minister has announced that they will no longer follow dates to mark important benchmarks, but rather on COVID-19 target case numbers. In addition, the curfew in Melbourne will be lifted at 5 am on Monday.

California

The governor of California has recently signed 3 new bills:

  1. AB 1867 – This bill grants all employees who have been exposed or have tested positive with COVID-19 paid sick leave for the remainder of 2020. This bill also aims to cover those who are not covered by the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act. To be eligible:
    • Employee must be required to leave their home for work
    • The employee must have been subject to federal or state quarantine or self-isolation due to COVID-19 or must have been advised by a healthcare professional to quarantine or self-isolate
    • The employer has prohibited the employee to work due to concerns relating to the transmission of COVID-19

Full-time employees are entitled to 80 hours (2 weeks) of paid sick leave.  Sick pay is paid at the rate of either the employee’s regular pay rate or the minimum wage, however, is capped at 511 USD per day (5,110 USD total).  This supplemental sick leave is in addition to any paid regular sick leave.

In addition, this new bill would allow for the California Labor Commission to investigate violations and fine employers who do not give sufficient paid sick leave.

  1. B. 1159- The new bill refers to worker’s compensation due to illness or death that result from COVID-19. This would also cover an employee who tests positive for COVID-19 in the event of a workplace outbreak. This new bill would make it easier for employees to claim worker’s compensation and put the burden of proof on the employer.
  2. B. 685- This bill requires employers to notify employees who have been exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace within 1 business day. In addition, the employer has 48 hours to notify public health officials when the number of infected is considered an outbreak. This law will also gives authority to California Division of Occupational Safety and Health to shut down a workplace if it is believed that there is risk.

September 22, 2020

Israel 

The Israeli government has announced an aid package plan worth 10.5 billion NIS to assist with businesses that have seen a 25% loss of revenue due to COVID-19. This aid will assist with grants to help small businesses retain their employees, assist with business expenses.  Once more information is published regarding how this plan will be executed, we will update this post.

September 21, 2020

New Zealand 

The New Zealand government has moved to Level Alert 1 for most of the country except for Auckland.  On September 23rd, Auckland will move to Level Alert 2, which allows for social gatherings of up to 100 people.

September 16, 2020

Thailand

Starting this month, the social security contributions in Thailand will be reduced to help ease employer and employee hardships due to COVID-19.  The reduction in the contributions will last for 3 months, and both the employer and employee social security contributions will be 2%.

September 15, 2020

Austria 

Since Monday, Austria has begun to tighten restrictions as they have seen a surge in infections.  Face masks must be worn in all public indoor areas.  In addition, events or gatherings with more than 50 people in a closed space is not allowed.

September 14, 2020

Israel

As of September 18, 2020, Israel will impose a 3- week nationwide lockdown where one will not be able to venture further than 500 meters from one’s place of residence, unless for the purpose of medical services and essential things such as food and medicine.

Australia

Australia

The government has announced an extension of the JobKeeper Payment and will take effect on September 28, 2020.

In order to receive this benefit from September 28th to March 28th, 2021, businesses and non-profits will be required to undergo a re-evaluation for eligibility for this benefit and will need to show that they have had a decline in turnover for the 2020 Q3.

The JobKeeper payment rates are as follows:

From September 28, 2020- January 3, 2021- The payment rate every two weeks will be 1,200 AUD for employees whose previous 4 pay periods worked an average of more than 20 hours per week and 750 AUD for employees who worked less than an average of 20 hours per week.

From January 4, 2021- March 28, 2021- The payment rate every two weeks will be 1,000 AUD every two weeks for employees whose previous 4 pay periods worked an average of more than 20 hours per week and 650 AUD for employees who worked less than 20 hours per week on average.

September 13, 2020

United Kingdom

As of Monday, September 14th, there will be a ban on meetings of more than 6 people.  This rule, known as “the rule of six” applies to both indoor and outdoor settings.  For those who break this rule, a fine of 100 GBP will be issued and will double each time for repeat offenders up to 3,200 GBP.  Households with more than 6 people are exempt from this rule.

Canada

In Ontario, the government has announced that the Infections Disease Emergency Leave Regulation (IDEL) measures will be extended to January 2, 2021.  Any non-unionized employee who has a temporary reduction of work hours between March 1, 2020, to January 2, 2021, will be on job-protected IDEL leave.

September 2, 2020

Canada

As the temporary Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is expiring, 3 new benefits are being introduced on September 27th  and will available for 1 year to use:

  1. The Canada Recovery Benefit- This benefit provides up to 400 CAD per week for up to 26 weeks for those who are not eligible for unemployment insurance (self-employed and gig workers). To be eligible:
    • Must be at least 15 years old with a valid Social Insurance Number
    • Stopped working due to COVID-19 and are looking for work or have experienced a reduction in income due to the pandemic
    • Were employed or self-employed in 2019 and 2020 and income was at least 5,000 CAD

To receive this benefit, a person must apply every 2 weeks to show that they continue to meet the eligibility requirements. In addition, those receiving their benefit will need to repay some of the benefit back through income tax returns if the annual net income is over 38,000 CAD.

  1. Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit- This benefit will provide 500 CAD a week for up to 2 weeks. This benefit will be available to those who are ill or must isolate due to COVID-19. This benefit is for:
    • Residents who are at least 15 years old and hold a valid Social Insurance Number
    • Employees who have earned at least 5,000 CAD in 2019 or in 2020

Employees will not be required to provide a medical certificate to receive this benefit but cannot receive other medical benefits at the same time and would have to have missed at least 60% of their scheduled work. In addition, the employee will have to apply for this benefit once a week to ensure eligibility.  Lastly, this benefit is also taxable.

  1. Canada Recovery Care Benefit- This benefit will be available for 1 year and will allow eligible recipients 500 CAD for up to 26 weeks. The goal of this benefit is to assist employees who are unable to work due to school closures and the need to provide care for a child.  To be eligible:
    • Must be a Canadian resident and must be at least 15 years old with a valid Social Insurance Number
    • Must be employed or self-employed
    • Earned at least 5,000 CAD in 2019 or 2020
    • Have had a reduction in work time by 60% due to caring for a child under the age of 12 or caring for a family member with a disability due to the closure of a school the child being high risk in contracting COVID-19, or their usual caregiver is unavailable due to COVID-19.

Employees will need to apply after the period in which they must take off and two members in the same household cannot be the recipient of the benefit at the same time.

August 27, 2020

Brazil

Brazil’s salary reduction program (Emergency Employment and Income Preservation Benefit) has been extended for another two months to guarantee it lasts until 2021.

The program allows for companies to suspend contracts or negotiate salary and wage reductions by up to 70% for a period of up to 6 months. During this time, the Federal government assists by supplementing workers’ income up to the limit for unemployment insurance (R $ 1,813).

August 17, 2020

New Zealand

As Auckland has seen a rise in COVID-19 cases, the alert level has risen to 3, which means that employees are encouraged to work from home. Travel inside of Auckland has been restricted.

In addition, the government just announced that the September 17th national elections would be postponed by 4 weeks to October 19, 2020.

United Kingdom

On August 14th, the government announced restrictions on movement and social gatherings in parts of northern England. In addition, there is a ban on indoor gatherings or gatherings of mixed households, even if there is an open backyard that is still in place.

August 10, 2020

United States

On August 8, 2020, the President of the United States signed an executive order to defer certain payroll taxes (Social Security and Medicare) from September 1, 2020, to December 31, 2020.

Any worker whose wages are less than 4,000 USD in any bi-weekly pay period would be eligible to defer their employee contributions without penalty.

We will keep this post updated when more information is published.

August 3, 2020

Melbourne, Australia 

As of August 2, 2020, Melbourne has entered into a state of disaster, and stricter restrictions will be imposed:

  • From 8 PM- 5 AM, those living in Melbourne will be under curfew, with exception of medical workers and caregivers.
  • Exercise will be limited to 1 hour a day and must be within 5 kilometers of one’s home. Group exercise will be limited to 2 people.
  • Shopping is limited to 1 person per day, per household, and also must be done within 5 kilometers of one’s home.
  • From Wednesday, August 3, weddings cannot take place.
  • University studies must be done remotely. School-age children will be permitted to go to school on Mondays and learn remotely on Wednesdays. There are exceptions for vulnerable students

These changes are set to expire Sunday, September 13, 2020.

July 29, 2020

United Kingdom

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme  

From the 1st of July, employers can begin to reinstate their furloughed employees and apply for a grant that would pay for a portion of the employee’s wages for hours not worked. The employees can return to work with no limitation to time and shifts arrangements and will still be able to receive Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) for the hours not worked. Only employers who were previously awarded grants for furloughed employees are eligible. The furloughs had to be between March 1 and June 30, 2020.  

For June, and July, employers are able to receive a grant of 80% of employee wages from the government, capped at 2,500 GBP. In addition, national insurance and pension contributions will be paid by the government. This amount will be determined by the percentage of hours the employee is placed on furlough.  

For August, the government will pay 80% of the employee’s wages (capped at 2,500 GBP) for the hours that the employee is furloughed, and the employer will be responsible for paying the national insurance and pension contributions.  

For September, the government will pay up to 70% of wages, capped at 2,187.50 GBP for hours that the employee is on furlough, and the employer will pay the employee for hours worked. Employers will also be responsible for paying national insurance and pension contributions so that the total wages received during furlough equals 80% (capped at 2,500 GBP)  

For October, the government will cover 60% of wages, capped at 1,875 GBP for the hours the employee is on furlough. It will be the employer’s responsibility to pay national insurance and pension contributions so that the employee received 80% of their wages (capped at 2,500 GBP) 

This scheme is set to end October 31, 2020.   

23 April, 2020

United States

  • President Trump has unveiled a three-phase approach for “opening up America again”. These guidelines, which are based on the advice of public health experts, are steps intended to help state and local officials reopen their economies and get people back to work. For the complete criteria and complete details on the phases visit this link.

22 April, 2020

United States

  • President Trump has announced that a 60-day immigration ban to those who are seeking to live and work in the United States, but he has stated that it will only apply to those seeking green cards and not temporary workers. The executive order, which he is expected to sign Wednesday, is an action to protect American workers from the economic fallout caused by the Coronavirus. Although the ban will be set to 60 days, an extension is possible based on the economic condition at the time when the ban is reviewed.

21 April, 2020

United States

  • President Trump is expected to sign an executive order that will temporarily suspend immigration into the United States. This move by the US administration is intended to protect American workers from competition during the rebuilding of the economy that was hit from the Corona crisis. It’s believed that this closure will most likely also ban those who intend to enter the country with H1-B visas and employment-based green cards. Those who are already in the country or are considered important essential workers should be excluded from this ban. This is a developing story and updates will be added as they are released.

16 April, 2020

Singapore

  • The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has issued an advisory on employer-assisted remittance for foreign workers residing in dormitories. The advisory is for salary payments to be made electronically in order to assist those who remit salaries but are currently isolated for safe distancing. Click here for more information on employer-assistance regarding remittance.

Canada

  • The Canadian government has passed legislation called “Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy” that would subsidize employee wages by up to 75%.  The goal of this legislation is to prevent mass layoffs and will be retroactive from March 15, 2020 and will end June 6, 200. In addition, the CEWS would allow companies to re-hire otherwise terminated employees as a result of COVID-19.
  • Eligibility: Employers who are individuals, Taxable corporations, Partnerships, non-profit organizations, and registered charities. To be eligible, these types of organizations must have seen a 15% decrease in revenue in March 2020 and 30% after. The amount an employer may receive for an employee that is eligible to receive must be the greater of the following scenarios: 75% of their regular pay, capped at $847 CAD per week OR Up to $847 CAD of the regular pay or 75% of the regular pay before the COVID-19 crisis (whichever is less)
  • To calculate the average weekly wages, wages paid between January 1st and March 15th and must exclude any 7 day period in which the employee was absent from work due to COVID-19.
  • Refund on payroll taxes: CEWS will also cover a 100% refund of some employer payroll taxes.  These include Employment Insurance, the Canada Pension Plan, the Quebec Pension Plan, and the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan.

United States

  • Main Street New Loan Facility- Under the Federal Reserve Act, small and medium sized businesses who are eligible will be able to receive 4 year loans if they can prove that they require financial assistance in maintaining their payroll due to COVID-19.  Companies with 10,000 employees or less and with less than $2.5 billion USD are eligible to apply.  The minimum size loan is $1 million USD with a maximum of $150 million USD.  All principal and payments may be deferred for 1 year.  More information can be found here.

13 April, 2020

Israel

  • The Israeli cabinet has approved an emergency regulation that now permits employers to place pregnant employees on unpaid leave. This regulation eliminates the need for the employer to receive permission from the Labor, Social Affairs and Social Services Ministry before placing the employee on maternity leave. This was approved to allow those affected by the current crisis to receive unemployment.  This rule also applies to employees residing in a shelter for victims of domestic abuse and employees involved in surrogacy adoption.

Spain

  • The Spanish Government is currently working on rolling out a universal basic income to assist its citizens with the economic crisis that has been caused due to the Coronavirus. However, what the amount will be, and if it will go through is still unknown.

7 April, 2020

Sweden 

  • Starting today, companies can apply for short term allowance. For employees who qualify, employee hours can be shortened and the government will assist the employer with paying wages.

6 April, 2020

Canada

  • Starting April 6th the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) will be accepting applications from individuals who have stopped working because of Covid-19 and our seeking temporary income support. Those who qualify can receive $500 for up to 16 weeks. Further details on eligibility and how to apply can be found on the Government of Canada site.

1 April, 2020

Australia

  • The Australian government has come out with a JobKeeper program to assist companies by subsidizing eligible employees’ wages.  Employees are to receive at least 1,500 AUD (before tax) every 14 days.

31st March, 2020

United States

  • The State of Arizona has issued a stay-at-home order. The full list of essential businesses that can stay open can be found here

Czech Republic

  • From April 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020, the Czech Labor Office will be providing wage relief to employers who fit eligibility to receive aid in the form of retroactive wage reimbursements.

30th March, 2020

United States

  • The United States Federal government has extended their initial 15-day social distancing guidelines to extend through April 30. This means people are urged to work from home and end all non-essential travel.

29th March, 2020

Spain

  • Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has announced that all non-essential workers must stay at home for the next two weeks. The tighter lockdown will begin Monday March 30 and last until April 9. He stated that all workers are to receive their usual salaries but will need to make up the lost hours at a later date.

26th March, 2020

India

  • India has begun a 21-day Nationwide lockdown that will shut down all public and private offices that are not deemed essential services. For now, all employees should be working from home. Currently, employers are not to cut salaries or lay off employees until April 15th when restrictions are reassessed.

Singapore

  • 26 March, 2359 hours till 30 April Singapore will impose stricter restrictions regarding where citizens can congregate.
  • The Resilience Budget rolled out on March 26 2020 in addition to the Stabilization and Support Package (SSP) to add additional support to businesses and employees during the Coronavirus crisis.Job Support Scheme (JSS)
    • The JSS will grant support to qualified groups by covering 75% of gross monthly wages per Singapore Citizen/Permanent Resident employee. The scheme has a monthly wage cap of $4,600.

    Other business supports include property tax rebates, rental waivers, temporary bridging loan, and a waiver for temporary occupation license.

    Training Support

    Training Industry Professionals in Tourism (TIP-iT)

    • TIP-iT which provides support to tourism companies through employee upgrading, and talent and leadership development, has extended its courses which run from March 1 – May 31 2020 to also commence between June 1 – December 31 2020.
    • TIP-iT will now cover up to 90% of course and trainer fees, as well as 90% of basic salary for absentee payroll, and is capped at $10 per hour.

    Enhanced Grants Under the Tourism Development Fund (TDF)

    The tourism sector is also being supported by grants under the Tourism Development Fund (TDF). Info on the types of grants and how to apply can be found here.

  • Employer Responsibilities and Enhanced Precautions for Employees

Further restrictions have been placed for work pass holders and their dependents who will be arriving into Singapore from the United Kingdom and the United States. Those entering the country will be required to enter a 14-day quarantine at a designated facility that is not their home.

Employers must ensure that their foreign employees who are entering the country have a residence that is suitable for completing a 14-day Stay-Home Notice. (If the employee is arriving from the US or UK, they will serve their Stay-Home at the government designated facilities.) Transport must also be provided that can take them directly from the airport to the location where they will be staying. If the employee is staying at a private residence, the landlord must provide a written consent that they permit the stay, and if not, then the employer must find a hotel or dormitory for the employee. Employers should also provide employees who are not staying in a government facility with food and other provisions to assist them during the quarantine.

Also, employers must make sure that the employee has a Singapore phone number and WhatsApp that the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) will be able to contact them on if they need to be reached.

As an Employer, if you are able to meet these standards, you can submit your request for approval to allow foreign employee or dependent to enter Singapore here.

25th March, 2020

United Kingdom

  • Employers with under 250 employees are able to receive reimbursement for statutory sick pay for employees affected by the coronavirus.

Netherlands

  • Employers are no longer able to request reduced working hours for their employees. Instead, the government has introduced temporary measures to assist with salary payments so that an employee is able to continue to received 100% of their salary.
  • Employers must provide a safe working space for an employee who is unable to work from home
  • Wage reduction is possible if the employee refuses to carry out their duties

United States

  • Washington State, Atlanta (Georgia), Michigan, Ohio, Dallas Country (Texas) – stay at home orders have been put in place
  • Massachusetts- All non-essential business are shut down or encouraged to work from home when possible
  • Alabama – has temporarily ordered that employer charges will be waived for unemployment claims related to COVID-19 until further notice.
  • Nevada – has issued formal guidance that hours cannot be deducted from sick leave balance if it is for COVID-19 reasons

Australia

  • Supporting Apprentices and Trainees

Businesses that employ trainees or apprentices may be eligible for wage subsidies in order to maintain the development of skilled workers. Employers who are eligible can receive 50% of their apprentice’s or trainee’s wage until September 30, 2020. Employers will receive a maximum reimbursement of $21,000. If the current employer is unable to retain the apprentice, the subsidy will be available to the new employer. More information can be found here.

  • Boosting Cash Flow for Employers

Small and medium business and non-for-profits, with a minimum of payment of $20,000 is eligible to receive a Government provided subsidy of up to $100,000. This measure is intended to boost cash flow to business that have a lower turnover that $50 million or NFP’s. This payment is tax free. More information can be found here.

24th March, 2020

California, United States

  • The Governor of California issued a temporary suspension of the WARN Act that allows employers to lay off employees with a shorter notice period.

France

  • Employers must ensure that they adequately protect the safety and health of their employees. This includes making arrangements to reduce risk as well as provide information on hygiene.  Otherwise, the employer may be liable.
  • Employees who are considered high risk (i.e. they came back from abroad / were in contact with an infected person) must go in to quarantine are able to provide their employer with work cessation through the regional healthcare authority (ARS).

23rd March, 2020

Belgium:

  • If an employee is not able to work due to not being able to adjust their hours or not being able to work remotely they can apply for temporary unemployment benefits receiving an allowance up to 70% of their regular monthly salary with a cap of 2.754,76 EUR per month
  • Self employed persons will be able to postpone payment of Belgian social security contributions without penalties.  This will not affect the benefits they receive.

USA – N.Y

  • Emergency paid sick leave legislation requiring  employers to provide eligible New York employees with job-protected paid and/or unpaid sick.
  • Extends New York State paid family leave benefits to certain employees who have been impacted by the pandemic.
  • To be eligible an employee must be subject to a mandatory / precautionary order of quarantine or isolation issued by the state of New York, the department of health, local board of health, or any governmental entity duly authorized to issue such order due to COVID-19.

22nd March, 2020

United Kingdom:

  • Business loans of up to £5m, interest free loan for 6 months, 80% underwritten by HM Treasury.
  • Government to pay 80% salary for 3 months for people unable to work, up to £2,500 per person per month.
  • VAT holiday – deferral of VAT payments for 3 months

Italy:

  • For the next two months, unless there is just cause, an employer is barred from terminating their employees.
  • Self-employed persons who need to take care of their children due to school closures will receive parental leave, which will amount to 50% of their monthly wages.
  • Taxes have been suspended for employees in professions that have been defined as the most vulnerable including cooks, truck drivers, hotel workers, and clerks.

Denmark:

  • The government will pay 75% of an employee’s salary who would have otherwise been terminated due to COVID-19.
  • For hourly employees, the government will pay up to 90% of employee salaries, capped at 26,000 Danish kroner.

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