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Ready for the California Sick Leave Law?

June 25, 2015

Beginning July 1, 2015, the California Healthy Workplaces Healthy Families Act (State Assembly Bill AB 1522) takes effect. This new law requires all employers (with few exceptions) in the state to accrue and award paid sick leave to employees who work 30 days or more per year. Employers have two ways to award the paid sick leave:

Accrual method
Employees earn one hour of paid sick leave for every thirty hours worked. Paid sick leave accrual can be capped by an employer at 6 days or 48 hours. Any unused paid sick leave is to be carried over into the following year under the accrual method. 

Lump Sum method
Employers can award 3 days or 24 hours of paid sick leave per year, but the hours need to be made available to the employee at the beginning of the benefit year. The lump sum method does not mandate employers to carry over unused paid sick leave or track accrual based on hours worked. 

Regardless of the method chosen by an employer, new employees can be denied from taking paid sick leave within 90 days of starting employment. However, accrual begins calculating at the date employment starts and the paid sick leave (accrued or lump sum) is to be made available to the employee on the 90th day of employment. For employers that already have a paid sick leave or paid time off (PTO) policy that provides at least 24 hours or three days, no accrual or carryover is required as long as the employee receives the benefit at the beginning of the year according to the policy. One provision that will apply to all employers is the requirement to include the employee’s available sick pay on each payroll stub. If the inclusion of this information on the payroll stub is not possible, the employer can provide the employee’s available sick pay on another document on the pay date.

Need help complying with the new California paid sick leave law? Virtual TimeClock makes it easy to track accrued and used paid sick leave when awarded based on either hours worked or as a lump sum. Check out a free time clock software trial here.

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