Last year the California legislature passed AB 1522, the ‘Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014’. Under this law California employers are required to provide Paid Sick Leave to their employees with very few exceptions. The Paid Sick Leave requirement went into effect on July 1, 2015.
The Paid Sick Leave requirement applies to any employee who works in California for 30 or more days within a year from the commencement of his or her employment. Thus, in addition to full-time employees, even temporary and part-time employees are entitled to accrue Paid Sick Leave. Additionally, both exempt and non-exempt employees are entitled to accrue Paid Sick Leave.
Under the new law, Paid Sick Leave will accrue at one hour for every 30 hours worked beginning at the commencement of employment. For employees who were already employed as of July 1, 2015, Paid Sick Leave will accrue at the rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked beginning July 1, 2015. For exempt employees who do not clock-in/clock-out, they are deemed to work 40 hours per workweek for purposes of accruing Paid Sick Leave, unless the employee’s normal workweek is less than 40 hours, in which case the exempt employee will accrue Paid Sick Leave based upon that normal workweek. Whether exempt or nonexempt, employees who work 40 hours per week accrue 1.33 hours of Paid Sick Leave per week.
An employee is eligible to begin using his or her Paid Sick Leave on the 90th calendar day of their employment. Like accrued vacation, unused Paid Sick Leave must be carried over to following year and the employer may cap the amount of Paid Sick Leave at 48 hours for the purposes of Paid Sick Leave. However, unlike accrued vacation, Paid Sick Leave is not required to be paid out to the employee upon termination or separation from their employer.
The Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families also contains extensive posting, notice, and recordkeeping requirements which are beyond the scope of this blog. For more information on the new law, please visit the Department of Industrial Relations’ website on the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families at http://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/ab1522.html