By Kristina Launey and Ann Marie Zaletel

Just over a month before the January 1, 2015 effective date of AB 1522, the Labor Commissioner has issued two advisories of immediate interest to California employers.  One is a template poster for employer compliance and the other is a revised Wage Theft Notice.  

Employers may

By Kristina Launey and Christie Jackson

On August 30, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown commented on the Legislature’s passage of a bill entitled the “Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014”: “Tonight, the Legislature took historic action to help hardworking Californians. This bill guarantees that millions of workers – from Eureka to San Diego – won’t lose their jobs or pay just because they get sick.”  The bill, which he signed into law September 10, will require employers statewide to provide paid sick leave.

Though the requirement that employees receive paid sick leave under the Act does not kick in until July 1, 2015, the Act already has employers sweating the law’s myriad of new provisions, mindful of the compliance headaches the new law’s vagaries are certain to bring. If only there were a vaccine… For now, as is often the case, the only sure cure is prevention. Awareness and proactive preparation is the only way to weather the worst of this latest legislative virus.

Employees May Earn 24 Hours of Paid Sick Leave Per Year: The Act grants a right to earn paid sick days to employees who—on or after July 1, 2015—work in California for 30 or more days within a year. Paid sick days will accrue at the rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked. The employee may use the accrued sick days beginning on the 90th day of employment. Exempt employees’ accrual is based on a presumed 40 hour-workweek; except that an exempt employee whose normal workweek is fewer than 40 hours will accrue paid sick days based on that employee’s normal workweek.

An employer can limit use of paid sick days to 24 hours or three days in each year of employment. No accrual or carry over is required if the full amount of leave is received at the beginning of each year. The Act does not require extra paid sick days to be paid by employers whose paid time off policies already provide as many sick days as the Act now requires.

Qualifying Reasons for Use: 
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By Soo Cho and Michele Haydel Gehrke

Ah, San Francisco — the Bridge! Golden Gate Park! The chocolate! The fog! . . . the ordinances!?  In recent years, our favorite City by the Bay has adopted a number of employee-friendly ordinances that can catch the unwary employer.  In addition to the new “Ban the Box” Ordinance discussed here, San Francisco has a number of additional city ordinances regulating employers.  These ordinances include the Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance; the Paid Sick Leave Ordinance; the Health Care Security Ordinance; and the Minimum Wage Ordinance.  Navigating these ordinances can be tricky not only for employers located in San Francisco, but for employers who have employees who spend more than 8 hours a week working in San Francisco.

San Francisco Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance

As mentioned in previous Cal-Pecs blogs, here and here, effective January 1, 2014 San Francisco has implemented a new Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance.  This ordinance allows employees to request flexible or predictable work arrangements to allow the employee to assist with caregiving responsibilities for a child, a family member with a serious health condition, or a parent age 65 or older.

This ordinance applies to employers who regularly employ 20 or more employees, regardless of location.  Employees are covered if they have been employed for six months and regularly work at least 8 hours per week in San Francisco.  Employees may request accommodations such as a reduced schedule, a change in scheduled work times, working from home or telecommuting.
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