Coronavirus (COVID-19) Support Center

Officially declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, the coronavirus is leaving employers reasonably concerned about their businesses and workforce. United Benefits Coronavirus (COVID-19) Support Center provides important information and resources for navigating workplace issues during the pandemic. We are committed to providing exceptional service to our customers and our COVID-19 resources are designed to present practical solutions that are actionable, timely, and helpful in shaping workforce decision-making.

For service and support, contact your representative or our support team at support@thinkbenefits.co.

 

 

A message to our customers and valued partners

Like many of you, we are aware of the continuously evolving COVID-19 pandemic and have a plan in place to monitor, prepare for, and respond to any health or safety issue that may impact us. That said, the commitment of our team members has never been stronger. Our focus is to continue providing the business, benefits, human resources, and compliance leadership that you need, continually adapting our business solutions and our operations as a result of this fast-changing pandemic.

John Kunyczka, Jr

Owner

Insights

Quick access to our COVID-19 (Coronavirus) resources and insights.

New

COVID-19 Return-to-Work Guidelines for Businesses

Our united efforts in the face of this global public health crisis are working in some regions. In preparation for returning to work, we all have an important role in maintaining public health and safety.

As an employer, if your business operations were interrupted, resuming normal or phased activities presents an opportunity to update your COVID-19 preparedness, response, and control plans. These resources include the basics that businesses and workers need to get back to work safely. As you reopen, you will need to follow all federal, state, and local laws and regulations.

Return-to-Work Resources

COVID-19 FAQs

We have assembled a comprehensive list of FAQs separated into three areas: Group Health Plan Coverage Considerations, FFCRA Leave Provision Considerations, and FFCRA Payroll Tax Credit Considerations. Select an area and question for the answer.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources

United Benefits is focused on helping you get access to the information and services you need to manage the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We offer a resource library that provides a variety of COVID-19 related topics and distribute to our clients when released.

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in unprecedented change throughout the country, including new federal legislation with which employers need to comply. As the situation continues to evolve, it can be difficult to stay on top of the latest developments. Our attorney-reviewed COVID-19 resources can help make it easier to understand compliance obligations as they occur.

 

SERIES

  • ACA Compliance Bulletin: This series provides an overview of updates to provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) due to COVID-19.
  • HR Compliance Bulletin: This series provides an overview of timely COVID-19 developments in regard to HR-related topics, including paid leave laws, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), and furloughs.
  • Compliance Bulletin: This series provides an overview of employee benefits changes due to COVID-19. Topics include the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), and other group health plan changes.
  • HR Compliance Overview: This series provides an in-depth review of certain COVID-19 federal legislation and how it may affect employers.
  • Legal Update videos: This series features brief videos that highlight the need-to-know information regarding a variety of compliance developments due to COVID-19.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • Families First Coronavirus Response Act Requires Paid Employee Leave (Document ID: 243336): This Compliance Bulletin provides an overview of the two new federal employees leave mandates as established under the FFCRA.
  • CARES Act Expands Health Coverage Rules (Document ID: 282673): The CARES Act provides $2.2 trillion in federal funding to address the coronavirus crisis and includes several provisions that affect health plan coverage. This Legal Update summarizes the CARES Act’s coverage changes.
  • The CARES Act Impacts Health Plan Coverage – Video (Document ID: 283240): This Legal Update video provides a brief overview of how the CARES Act affects health plans.
  • IRS Issues Guidance on Tax Credits for Coronavirus Paid Leave (Document ID: 243616): This Compliance Bulletin discusses the IRS’ tax credits employers can use to provide paid leave during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be difficult to sort out fact from fiction when it comes to the news. Our team works diligently to provide factual and reliable updates on the ever-changing situation.

 

SERIES

  • News Brief: This series features thoughtful, trustworthy information about the latest COVID-19 developments and public health expert advice.
  • News Brief videos: Don’t have time to read an article? This series breaks down the accompanying full-text News Brief into a brief, easy-to-digest video that highlights the need-to-know information about a COVID-19 development.
  • In the Know: This series provides an overview of various COVID-19 developments, explaining complex issues in easy-to-understand terms.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • President Trump Extends Federal Social Distancing Guidelines Through April 30 – Video (Document ID: 282738): This News Brief video provides a brief overview of President Donald Trump’s extension of the federal social distancing guidelines to slow the spread of COVID-19.
  • UnitedHealthcare and Other Insurers Waive Coronavirus- related Costs (Document ID: 283334): This News Brief discusses how major insurers are waiving COVID-19 treatment costs.

Public health organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization provide invaluable COVID-19 resources, but finding them on the internet can be time-consuming. The most relevant government guidance can be found within our coronavirus resources.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • Employee Rights: Paid Sick Leave & Expanded Family & Medical Leave Under the FFCRA (Document ID: 282305): This DOL poster describes employees’ paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave rights under the FFCRA.
  • Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus (Document ID: 242073): This guide provides information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about how businesses and employers can plan for and respond to COVID-19.

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused businesses across the country to make unprecedented changes to their workflows and procedures, including furloughing employees, asking employees to exclusively work from home, and communicating company news to employees. The following resources are designed to help simplify the administrative tasks for HR professionals during these uncertain times.

 

SERIES

  • HR Insights: This series features articles that are designed to help HR professionals address COVID-19 at their organization. Topics covered include engaging remote employees, responding to COVID-19 within the workforce, and easing employee stress about the pandemic.
  • Forms: These sample forms take the guesswork out of developing comprehensive forms for employee leave or other issues. Note: These forms are samples and should be customized prior to use.
  • Letters: Easily communicate company policies and information with these sample employee communication letters. Note: These letters are samples and should be customized prior to use.
  • Policies: The changing times may call for revisions to existing workplace policies, such as a pandemic leave policy or telecommuting policy. These policies are designed to be used as samples or a starting point for employers and should be customized prior to use.
  • Videos: These resources provide brief overviews of pressing COVID-19 topics and deliver the essential information in an easy-to-understand format.
  • Posters: These resources offer a new way to learn about the most important information about various elements of COVID-19 and its effects on the workplace.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • Best Practices for Addressing the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic (Document ID: 243041): This HR Insights article provides tips for how an organization can address the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Essential Worker Employee Communications Letter (Document ID: 283292): Use this letter to inform employees that they are considered essential workers. Please note that this letter requires extensive customization prior to use.

Educating employees on COVID-19 and other relevant issues can be complex and time-consuming, but it doesn’t have to be. Our employee resources are designed to make it easy for you to keep employees healthy and informed.

 

COVID-19 EDUCATION

Finding factual educational materials on COVID-19 for your employees can be difficult. Our resources make it easy to tell employees what they need to know about the pandemic:

  • Live Well, Work Well flyers: These articles provide a general overview of the situation and disease.
  • Posters: These posters cover a variety of topics and are designed to simplify COVID-19 education.
  • Videos: These brief videos break down the COVID-19 pandemic into easily digestible bits for employees to learn more about the situation.
  • Government resources: Find all the relevant government- provided employee communications within our coronavirus resources in Broker Briefcase.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • What to Do if You’re Sick With Coronavirus (Document ID: 242889): This Live Well, Work Well article explains what you can do if you’re sick with COVID-19.
  • 8 Answers to Your Coronavirus Questions – Poster (Document ID: 242303): This poster provides answers to eight questions you may have about COVID-19 and your health.

 

EMPLOYEE BENEFITS AND COVID-19

For many, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused changes to their employee benefits. These resources help explain those changes to employees.

  • Know Your Benefits: The articles in this series provide an
  • an easy-to-understand overview of important benefits changes and updates due to COVID-19.
  • Videos: These brief videos break down employees’ benefits changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic into easily digestible bits for employees to learn more about the situation.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • Coronavirus Economic Impact Payments: What You Need to Know (Document ID: 283169): This Know Your Benefits article discusses the distribution of the CARES Act’s economic impact payments.
  • Coronavirus Stimulus Package FAQ – Video (Document ID: 282493): This video provides an overview of the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package signed into law on March 27, 2020.

 

EMPLOYEE MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES

These are stressful times for many employees, and their mental health may be suffering. Some may be finding it difficult to cope with their new “normal” of balancing working and caregiving responsibilities from home or facing financial stress, and others may be feeling lonely. These resources are designed to help employees address their mental health during these uncertain times.

  • Live Well, Work Well flyers: These articles provide a general overview of how to maintain mental health during the pandemic.
  • Posters: These posters provide easy-to-understand tips to preserve mental health during the pandemic.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • Overcoming Loneliness During the Coronavirus Pandemic (Document ID: 243792): Learn how to overcome loneliness during the COVID-19 pandemic with this Live Well, Work Well article.

COVID-19 has caused many employers across the country to make significant changes to their standard procedures, including shifting their employees from working at the office to working from home. The following resources are designed to make telecommuting easier for both employers and employees.

 

EMPLOYER RESOURCES

  • HR Insights: This series features articles that outline best practices for telecommuting and how to monitor employees while they work remotely.
  • Checklists: These resources help employers ensure that their organization is prepared for telecommuting.
  • Policies: When employees will be working from home, it’s important to outline your expectations and considerations. These sample policies can be customized to fit the needs of your organization.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • An Employer’s Quick Guide to Managing Remote Employees During the Coronavirus Pandemic (Document ID: 282610): This guide serves as an introduction to managing remote employees and includes best practices for keeping employees engaged.
  • 5 Work From Home Tips for Managers – Video (Document ID: 282256): This video provides five tips for managers working from home.

 

EMPLOYEE RESOURCES

  • Live Well, Work Well flyers: This series features articles that outline how to be productive while working at home, ergonomics tips, and how to balance your responsibilities while telecommuting.

 

POPULAR CONTENT

  • Employee Work From Home Guide (Document ID: 152572): Use this guide to outline your company’s telecommuting, or work from home, policy, and expectations, and educate your employees on best practices for working from home. Please note that this guide requires extensive customization to reflect your organization’s policies on telecommuting.
  • 5 Work From Home Tips for Employees – Video (Document ID: 243689): Working from home takes some getting used to. This video offers five tips for staying productive while working remotely.

Federal Resources

In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, below are federal resources by the agency.

Workplace Safety

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has resources to help employers and workers prepare for and respond to coronavirus in the workplace.

Wage, Hours, and Leave

The Wage and Hour Division is providing information on common issues employers and workers face when responding to COVID-19, including the effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

 

The Wage and Hour Division provides information on common issues employers and employees face when responding to COVID-19, and its effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Additional Resources

As the number of U.S. COVID-19 cases grows daily, businesses across the country are developing and implementing plans to keep their employees and customers healthy. Our Coronavirus (COVID-19) Support Center is focused on helping you get access to the information and services you need. Below are resources to assist with preparation.

 

OSHA Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 (PDF)

This guidance is not a standard or regulation, and it creates no new legal obligations. It contains recommendations as well as descriptions of mandatory safety and health standards.

CDC Business Pandemic Influenza Planning Checklist (PDF)

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have developed the following checklist for large businesses.

CDC Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to COVID-19 (PDF)

This interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID- 19).

COVID-19 and Your Workplace Checklist (PDF)

Keep your employees and their families safe by properly preparing your workplace. Consider the strategies outlined below to ensure that your workplace is prepared for the COVID-19 pandemic.

World Health Organization (WHO) Coronavirus Resources

WHO works worldwide to promote health, keep the world safe, and serve the vulnerable. WHO is continuously monitoring and responding to this outbreak and provides information to manage your response.

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the nation’s medical research agency — making important discoveries that improve health and save lives.

John Hopkins University Map of Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases

In response to this ongoing public health emergency, John Hopkins University developed an interactive web-based dashboard to visualize and track reported cases in real-time.

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)

As the nation’s risk advisor, CISA brings our partners in industry and the full power of the federal government together to improve American cyber and infrastructure security.

Carriers Ensuring Member Access to Care During COVID-19

To reduce barriers, insurers are waiving certain member cost‑sharing treatment for COVID‑19.

Supporting Businesses and Employees During COVID-19

Insurers are offering ways for employers to manage benefits and Congress passed the CARES Act , which provides SBA loans that offer financial assistance.

Staying Informed with Legislative Updates Relating to COVID-19

We will keep you up-to-date with state and federal legislation related to COVID-19 and how it affects your business and health coverage.

Insurer Updates for COVID-19 Regulations and Coverage

Review your applicable carrier guidelines and contact your United Benefits representative for more information.