United States: More Paid Sick Leave – The New Trend Sweeping California

Summary

Employers with employees throughout California must be wary of the patchwork of cities enacting their own paid sick leave requirements that may differ from statewide law.

IN DEPTH

California's Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 (California's Sick Leave Law) took full effect statewide on July 1, 2015, requiring that most employees may use at least three days (24 hours) of paid sick leave per year, while the total cap on sick leave accrual cannot be less than six days (48 hours). But various cities within California (such as Los Angeles, Oakland, San Francisco, Emeryville and Santa Monica) have gone further and require employers to offer even more paid sick leave than that required statewide. Employers with employees throughout California must be wary of this patchwork of laws and ordinances. This new trend of requiring employers to offer paid sick leave is picking up steam throughout California.

Los Angeles, CA

The Los Angeles City Council determined that California's Sick Leave Law did not provide workers in the second-largest US city with enough paid time off, and voted to require employers in Los Angeles to provide more. Effective July 1, 2016, most workers in Los Angeles will accrue and be able to use at least 48 hours of sick leave per year (equivalent to six days)—twice the mandatory minimum under California law. Businesses employing 25 or fewer workers will get an extra year to satisfy this new annual paid sick leave minimum. Like the statewide law, Los Angeles employers will have discretion to provide the paid sick leave either all up front or at an accrual rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked up to the cap. Employees can use their sick leave for a variety of reasons, including tending to an ill family member. Los Angeles also has a separate paid leave ordinance applying to hotel workers at hotels with more than 150 rooms.

Santa Monica, CA

Santa Monica's sick leave ordinance, enacted in January 2016, allows employees to accrue up to 72 hours of sick leave, with mandatory accrual and carry-over requirements. The ordinance was amended in April 2016 and will not become effective until January 1, 2017. Like the handful of other cities in California, Santa Monica's sick leave ordinance ultimately will provide employees with more sick leave than required by the recent statewide law. The accrual rate remains the same as California statewide law—1 hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Effective January 1, 2017, small businesses with 25 or fewer employees may cap accrual at no less than 32 hours of paid sick leave and larger businesses may cap the accrual at no less than 40 hours. Effective January 1, 2018, the minimum cap on accrual will increase to 40 hours for a small employers and 72 hours for large employers. However, because the statewide cap on accrual must be 48 hours, employers in Santa Monica must still satisfy that statewide accrual requirement (which large employers in Santa Monica will have to increase to 72 hours beginning January 1, 2018). An employer may prohibit use (as opposed to accrual) during the first 90 days of employment.

Oakland, CA

Oakland's 2015 paid sick leave ordinance provides that employees who work at least two hours in Oakland per week must accrue at least 1 hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Small businesses (fewer than 10 employees) may cap accrual at 40 hours, but are still subject to the more generous statewide cap requirement of 48 hours. Larger employers (more than 10 employees) may cap accrual at 72 hours. An employer may prohibit use (as opposed to accrual) during the first 90 days of employment. Like many of these laws and ordinances, if an employer has a paid time off (PTO) policy at least as generous as the sick leave ordinance, no additional sick leave is required. Consistent with similar ordinances, an employee may use such paid sick leave to care for a family member, such as a child.

San Francisco, CA

Ever the trendsetter, in 2007 San Francisco became one of the first cities to require employers to offer paid sick leave. Its ordinance requires most employers to provide sick leave to persons employed within the city and county of San Francisco. Following 90 days of employment, employees must accrue paid sick leave at the rate of no less than 1 hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. The ordinance places a minimum cap on accrual based on the size of the employer of up to 72 hours (nine days) for employers with more than ten employees. Like other paid sick leave rules, San Francisco's ordinance permits use of paid sick leave to care for family members, such as a child.

Emeryville, CA

Effective July 2015, most employees working in Emeryville accrue 1 hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Employers can cap accrual at 48 hours if the company has 55 or fewer employees working in Emeryville, or 72 hours if more than 55 employees in Emeryville. Employers may not cap the number of accrued sick days that are used per year. Consistent with similar ordinances, the Emeryville ordinance permits use of paid sick leave to care for family members, such as a child. An employer may prohibit use (as opposed to accrual) during the first 90 days of employment.

What Does This Mean For Covered Employers?

California employers face an ever-changing patchwork of local ordinances that go beyond statewide requirements for sick leave benefits. Employers should consult with legal counsel to get guidance on adjusting policies for local jurisdictions or developing an overall policy that complies with the variances in local laws and ordinances that may impact the employer's overall benefit scheme. This issue is complicated further by employers with operations in multiple states, where the divergence of laws may create even more skewed benefits. Employers must create an organized and thought out plan to satisfy all of these local and statewide legal requirements.

More Paid Sick Leave – The New Trend Sweeping California

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

Disclaimer

Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

Registration

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

Cookies

A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Links

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

Mail-A-Friend

If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

Security

This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.