September 20, 2021

Volume XI, Number 263

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September 17, 2021

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Sick Leave Entitlements on the Rise in CA? A Pending CA Bill Is Looking to Do Just That.

Just three years after the enactment of California’s paid sick leave law under the Healthy Workplace Healthy Family Act of 2014 (AB 1522), a new bill has been introduced seeking to increase the amount of sick leave employers must provide employees under California law. The bill, AB 2841, was introduced on February 16, 2018, by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher. Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher authored California’s existing paid sick leave law.

The bill comes in the wake of an aggressive flu season and the enactment of several local sick leave ordinances throughout California. Since California’s paid sick leave law went into effect, several cities enacted sick leave ordinances with varying requirements, including Los Angeles, Santa Monica, San Diego, Oakland, Emeryville and Berkeley. San Francisco already had a paid sick leave ordinance in effect.

Under this bill, employees may use up to 5 days or 40 hours of paid sick leave per year (up from 3 days or 24 hours under current law).  To the extent employers frontload or grant paid sick leave upfront each year, the bill increases the requisite amount from 3 days or 24 hours to no less than 5 days or 40 hours in a year. Additionally, for employers which accrue paid sick leave, the maximum accrual cap would increase from 6 days (or 48 hours) to 10 days (or 80 hours). The amendments would bring state law entitlements closer to the entitlements under local ordinances and more similar to San Diego’s sick leave ordinance, which happens to be where Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher’s district sits.

If enacted into law, the proposed amendments would increase state sick leave entitlements and further complicate the interplay between state law and the various local ordinances.  Employers must follow the standard that confers the greatest benefit to the employee.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2021National Law Review, Volume VIII, Number 101
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About this Author

Susan E. Groff, Jackson Lewis, disability accommodation lawyer, protected absence attorney
Principal

Susan E. Groff is a Principal in the Los Angeles, California, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She advises and counsels management on various employment related issues.

Ms. Groff advises employers on complying with federal and California requirements for disability accommodation and protected leaves of absence.

In addition, Ms. Groff counsels employers on a host of other employment issues, including wage and hour laws, harassment and discrimination complaints, workplace investigations,...

213-689-0404
Benjamin A. Tulis, Employment, Benefits, Litigation Attorney, Jackson Lewis Law Firm
Associate

Benjamin Tulis is an Associate in the Los Angeles, California, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. His practice focuses on employment litigation, benefits litigation, transactions, and advice and counsel within the labor and employment law sector.

Mr. Tulis represents employers and individual defendants in a wide range of employment and labor matters, including wrongful termination, matters arising under ERISA, administrative matters, wage and hour class actions, and matters involving competition and restrictive covenants.

213-689-0404
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