California Adopts New Employment Law Mandating Paid Sick Leave for All Employees
September 22, 2014 by Beeson Tayer & Bodine
On August 30, 2014, the California State Legislature passed legislation, AB 1522, that benefits all employees in the state by requiring that employers provide their employees with at least three (3) paid sick leave days per year. Governor Brown signed the bill into law ensuring that all employees have a sick leave benefit, a benefit that many take for granted.
Current state law does not require employers to provide any paid sick leave. Surprisingly, almost 40% of California employees currently have no paid sick leave. The consequences are the following. Employees:
- Come to work sick,
- Lose pay on days they are sick, and
- May be terminated for missing work.
These issues are particularly difficult for lower-wage workers who are already vulnerable and most impacted by any loss of income. Here is a summary of AB 1522 from the attorneys of Beeson, Tayer and Bodine, an employment law firm in California that works with unions and employees to protect their rights.
The new law, which will become effective July 1, 2015, provides that employees are entitled to paid sick leave once they work thirty or more days within their first year of employment. Under the law, employees will accrue paid sick leave at a rate of no less than one hour for every thirty hours worked, and employees will be entitled to use sick leave after their 90th day of employment. Further, the law allows an employee to carry over any accrued paid sick days to the next year of employment. If unused, however, an employee is not entitled, by the law, to use any more than twenty-four hours or three days of paid sick leave in a given year. The law does not require an employer to provide additional paid sick days if they have a paid leave policy or paid time off policy already in place, as long as the policy complies with the law regarding accrual, carry-over and use of the leave, and as long as the employee has at least twenty-four hours or three days of leave per year. Finally, the law does not apply to employees covered by a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) as long as the CBA meets certain requirements, including expressly providing for paid sick leave or a paid leave or paid time off policy.
Beeson, Tayer & Bodine applauds the Legislature and the employee advocates, including California labor unions, who advocated for this important law to protect all employees in the State. There have been a variety of rulings and legislation that has provided benefit to low wage workers in the last few months. Please see our article on the California minimum wage and follow us on Twitter to keep up with labor and employment law news and rulings.
The material on this website is provided by Beeson, Tayer & Bodine for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Readers should consult with their own legal counsel before acting on any of the information presented. Some of the articles are updated periodically, and are marked with the date of the last update. Again, readers should consult with their own legal counsel for the most current information and to obtain professional advice before acting on any of the information presented.