Katz/Pierz: What President Biden’s Vaccine Mandate Means for Employers

Sep 23, 2021

On September 9th, 2021, President Joe Biden issued an executive order that requires private employers with a workforce of 100 or more to institute a COVID-19 vaccination mandate OR require each employee to produce a weekly negative COVID-19 test result. In the executive order, Biden instructed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to draft an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) with specifics on employer implementation and how this program will be enforced. An ETS is only valid for 60 days; a permanent OSHA policy will likely be issued subsequently.

In response to this announcement, Katz/Pierz hosted a webinar on September 15th, 2021 with Amy McAndrew, MEA’s Director of Member Legal and Compliance Services. Amy, an employment law attorney, led a timely conversation on COVID-19 vaccine policies. View a recording of the webinar below, or click here.



Still, employers have many unanswered questions, such as:

  • Who is responsible to pay for employees’ weekly COVID-19 tests?
  • What employee exemptions are acceptable?
  • Are employers required to provide paid leave to employees who need to go get a COVID-19 vaccine?

The answers are unclear at the moment, and employers should expect the forthcoming ETS/OSHA standard to provide details.

Many Katz/Pierz clients have asked about COVID-19 surcharges, AKA imposing a recurring charge on unvaccinated workers. If you’re considering this policy, please see the PDF below which includes two informational resources:

  • “Six Employer Questions to Answer Before Imposing a Surcharge on Unvaccinated Workers” – From United Benefit Advisors
  • “What President Biden’s Vaccine Mandate Means for Employers” – Katz/Pierz whitepaper

Reach out to Katz/Pierz’s Director of Client Engagement Chrissy Magnotta with questions about how we can support your business with this developing issue: 

  • Email: chrissy@katzpierz.com
  • Phone: 856.672.6150

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