On December 8, 2021, the Texas Workforce Commission (“TWC”) sent a letter to all employers in the state of Texas setting forth its position on Executive Order GA-40.
Specifically, as we informed you on December 1, 2021, Texas is among several states that have restricted employers’ ability to mandate COVID vaccines. The TWC letter informs Texas employers that they cannot impose vaccine mandates on an employee who qualifies for an exemption based on religious, personal, or medical reasons. The TWC further advises that any employer in the state seeking to require COVID vaccinations, must first inform employees of the available exemptions, including exemptions for personal conscience. The TWC provides a sample “check the box” form for employers to use in processing exemption claims.
Employers in Texas should understand that if they terminate an employee for refusing a vaccine and do not provide the employee an opportunity to claim an exemption, then the employee will likely be able to collect unemployment benefits. In its letter, the TWC reminds employers that these unemployment claims will have an impact on chargebacks and experience ratings.
We also remind employers that they will have to analyze medical accommodation requests under the ADA.
This blog is made available by Foley & Lardner LLP (“Foley” or “the Firm”) for informational purposes only. It is not meant to convey the Firm’s legal position on behalf of any client, nor is it intended to convey specific legal advice. Any opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Foley & Lardner LLP, its partners, or its clients. Accordingly, do not act upon this information without seeking counsel from a licensed attorney. This blog is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Communicating with Foley through this website by email, blog post, or otherwise, does not create an attorney-client relationship for any legal matter. Therefore, any communication or material you transmit to Foley through this blog, whether by email, blog post or any other manner, will not be treated as confidential or proprietary. The information on this blog is published “AS IS” and is not guaranteed to be complete, accurate, and or up-to-date. Foley makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, as to the operation or content of the site. Foley expressly disclaims all other guarantees, warranties, conditions and representations of any kind, either express or implied, whether arising under any statute, law, commercial use or otherwise, including implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Foley or any of its partners, officers, employees, agents or affiliates be liable, directly or indirectly, under any theory of law (contract, tort, negligence or otherwise), to you or anyone else, for any claims, losses or damages, direct, indirect special, incidental, punitive or consequential, resulting from or occasioned by the creation, use of or reliance on this site (including information and other content) or any third party websites or the information, resources or material accessed through any such websites. In some jurisdictions, the contents of this blog may be considered Attorney Advertising. If applicable, please note that prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Photographs are for dramatization purposes only and may include models. Likenesses do not necessarily imply current client, partnership or employee status.