The U. S. Department of Labor thoughtfully provides 59 Questions and Answers related to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act but omits the most common situation encountered in the small business market. So I will add Q and A #60 to the list:
60: What happens if my employer has lost 75% to 90% of their revenue and has already exhausted all available liquid assets and credit and is therefore no longer a viable business entity, has closed its operations, defaulted on debt and is now considering bankruptcy or other drastic reorganization measures?
Then Q&As 1 through 59 above do not apply and you and your family are F*ked!, along with the rest of the small business economy that has suffered under decades of wealth and income inequalities that undermined the core of this nation’s former economic strength1. This attempt by the federal government to bully and intimidate small business employers in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act who have already endured decades of injustice in the schemes to continue widening wage and income gap designed by large businesses, promoted by lobbyists and supported by the federal government simply won’t work this time. The DOL’s advice to file a civil lawsuit against your employer to collect back pay is ill advised against an employer who is already facing bankruptcy and must, by law, satisfy a range of higher priority debts like taxes mortgages and secured debt before considering paying your claim anyway.
1 I don’t recall ever using impolite language in over 35 years of writing about small business issues but this seems like the only reasonable response to the federal governments asinine new law.