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Updates & Clarifications on Relief & Requirements

March 18, 2020

Dear Restaurant Community,

As we try to give you up to date information, we ask that you also be patient as we are doing our best to respond to each and every email and also provide you with information that has been subject to change.  We received an influx of questions and want to provide some clarification shared in our earlier email. 


Virginia: Governor Northam Mandates 10 or fewer patrons

Governor Ralph Northam issued a new statement that changes his recommendation to a mandate, which limits the number of patrons to 10 or less. Restaurants are encouraged to continue to go and take out options.

DC: Wine, Beer & Spirits Delivery and To-go
Before you start offering wine, beer and spirits to-go and for delivery, you MUST REGISTER with ABRA and receive written approval, no exceptions.  Please note: food is required in the to-go or delivery order. Registration is live on ABRA’s website. Click here to register. Read regulations and FAQs here.

Once a form has been submitted, you will receive a confirmation email within minutes. No further action is required and the ABC-licensed restaurant or tavern can commence selling beer, wine, and spirits in closed containers for carry-out and/or delivery with prepared food immediately after receiving the confirmation email.

DC: Paid Sick and Safe Leave
Currently DC businesses are required to provide sick leave to all employees. You are only required to pay employees out for mandated sick leave, if your handbook states that is your policy. Paid sick leave is not applicable to employees that have already been terminated. Employees begin accruing leave as soon as they start work, but cannot access leave until at least 90 days of employment.

If an employer has

Employees accrue at least

Not to Exceed

100 or more employees

1 hour per 37 hours worked

7 days per calendar year

25 to 99 employees

1 hour per 43 hours worked

5 days per calendar year

Less than 25 employees

1 hour per 87 hours worked

3 days per calendar year

Tipped Employees

1 hour per 43 hours worked

5 days per calendar year

DC: Applying for Unemployment Benefits
As you can imagine, DOES is receiving an unprecedented influx of calls and applications for Unemployment Benefits.  At this point, all claims should be FILED ONLINE.

Please tell your employees to file by clicking here.
To learn more about the UI process click here.

If your employees do not have access to a computer, we encourage you to provide one for them at your restaurant, so they can register online.

DC: Sales Tax Deferral
Sales taxes for February and March, normally due March 20 and April 20 respectively, should be filed WITHOUT payment on the regular date. Payment may be deferred until July 20, 2020 without penalty.

DC: Termination of Employees
If you terminate employees, you are required by law to provide them their paycheck within 24 hours of termination date, including any accrued unpaid leave if your policy allows for payment.

Again, thank you all for your patience. If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to reach out. Below is a breakdown of who you should e-mail based on the topic:

Stay tuned as more information becomes available.