State of New Mexico COVID-19 Guidelines
Here are some of the latest legal updates pertaining to COVID-19
COVID-19 Sick and Family Leave
The required paid FFCRA Sick and Family Leaves have ended! Contact me if you need to know leave laws outside of NM because some states have additional leave requirements.
OSHA 300 Log and COVID-19 Reporting
Remember to electronically submit your OSHA 300 Log data and post your summery (if required) by March 2nd. COVID-19 can be a recordable illness if a worker is infected as a result of performing their work-related duties. However, employers are only responsible for recording cases of COVID-19 if all the following are true:
- The case is a confirmed case of COVID-19 (see CDC information on persons under investigation and presumptive positive and laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19);
- The case is work-related (as defined by 29 CFR 1904.5); and
- The case involves one or more of the general recording criteria set forth in 29 CFR 1904.7 (e.g., medical treatment beyond first aid, days away from work).
Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have questions or need these forms. More information can be found at: https://www.osha.gov/coronavirus/standards
COVID-19 Vaccine Registration
All New Mexicans may now register to receive the COVID-19 vaccine with the New Mexico Department of Health COVID-19 Vaccine Registration System. The website is: https://cvvaccine.nmhealth.org/ or you can call1-855-600-3453 to register.
Employer Vaccine Requirements
We have been fielding a lot of questions from employers wanted to know they can establish a COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement of their employees. The answer to this is that…it depends. A company may require it, baring that they do not discriminate against an employee who has a legally protected exemption (serious health conditions, religious exemptions, populations that have not been approved for the vaccine yet, etc.). Another exception includes a situation where an employer can prove that an unvaccinated employee poses a significant risk of substantial harm to the health or safety of the individual or others, in the workplace (healthcare, for example). The same rules apply to a company is paying their employees or giving some sort of bonus to them if they receive the vaccine. Also, ensure that HIPAA privacy rules are being followed in your procedures. Let us know if you would like us to review your policy and procedures for vaccinations.
Independent Contractors (this is scheduled to go into effect 3/8, however this may change once the new administration is in office) The Dept. of Labor issues a final rule which further defines Independent Contractor Status:
New Mexico – THERE ARE SOME IMPORTANT STATE SPECIFIC UPDATES!
- Employers may no longer have their employees do health assessments from home before coming into work. They must be done verbally or in in writing, by the employer. In addition to asking an employee if they or anyone that they have been in contact with have left the state, they should be asked if they have left the county.
- The New Mexico Department of Health does not consider Face shields an acceptable face covering unless a mask is worn under it.
- Masks with valves or vents are also not considered an acceptable face covering.
- The New Mexico Department of Health has stated that a negative COVID-19 test result does not end a quarantine period. Infection can occur at any point during a quarantine period and the full quarantine period should be completed. The NM Dept of Health and CDC both advise that it is best practice for employees stay home for 14 days if subject to quarantine. The CDC has issued some alternative options for reducing this time, in order to help businesses and stimulate the economy.
- Employees may return to work after day 10 without testing, if they do not have symptoms
- Employees may return to work after day 7 after receiving a negative test result (test must occur on day 5 or later), if they do not have symptoms
Guidelines are different for essential employers. Please reach out if you need to know the standards for your industry.
Please reach out if you would like me to send you a copy of All Together New Mexico, COVID-19 Practices for Employers – updated 1/6/2021.
New Mexico Minimum Wage
On 1/1/21 NM’s minimum wage increased to $10.50 per hour. Santa Fe is currently the only municipality with a different minimum wage which is $12.50. Tipped wages in NM vary, so please reach out for the correct update if needed. Please ensure your labor posters reflect these amounts. If you need new postings, please let me know.
New Mexico Legislative Session
SWHRC will be closely following NM’s Legislative Session from 1/19/21-3/20/21 for topics that will impact our clients.