California’s 2020 Legislative Session Brings Big Changes for Employers

California has closed a busy legislative session with more than 30 laws relevant to employers being signed by Governor Gavin Newsom. The 2020 session was influenced by the difficult events of 2020, from the COVID-19 pandemic to racial injustice.

COVID-19 Legislation

As COVID-19 became the primary point of concern for people across the nation, the California legislature focused on legislation pertaining to employers and the pandemic.

One of the first bills signed was Assembly Bill (AB) 1867, the statewide COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave. AB 1867 fills in some of the exceptions contained in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and provides up to 80 hours of paid sick leave to full-time employees who need to self-isolate or quarantine due to a COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure. Part-time employees and those who work on a variable schedule receive pro-rated benefits.

The Governor also signed AB 685, mandating that employers provide written notifications to employees within one business day of receiving notice of potential exposure to COVID-19, as well as providing additional enforcement mechanisms for the state’s safety and health administration, Cal/OSHA. Also signed was Senate Bill (SB) 1159, which codified the Governor’s prior Executive Order on COVID-19 and workers’ compensation presumptions. SB 1159 includes important requirements for employers to report employee positive tests to their workers’ compensation claims administrators.

Read the rest of the story on National Law Review

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