New California Supplemental COVID-19 Sick Leave Poster, Guidance Available

The California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) has issued both guidance on the new COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave requirements and model posters that employers may use to comply with the new law’s notice requirements.

As previously reported, on September 9, 2020, Governor Newsom signed AB 1867, a bill that requires covered employers to provide COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave to their employees for certain qualifying reasons. This bill is a budget trailer bill, meaning it went into effect immediately when signed on September 9, 2020.   

Remember, in addition to codifying the Governor’s Executive Order N-51-20 for food sector workers, AB 1867 broadly expands the paid sick leave coverage, requiring all employers with 500 or more employees in the United States to provide COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave to their California employees beginning no later than September 19, 2020. It also extends those requirements to health care providers and first responders whose employers elected to exclude them from the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) leave requirements.

Because employers only have a short time to comply with this new law, the DLSE’s new FAQs answer employers’ common questions about coverage, eligibility, calculating leave amounts and pay, and how previously provided paid sick leave under local ordinances, for example, may be credited toward the new law’s requirements. Employers should consult these new FAQs for more information.

Covered employers must display posters in a conspicuous place that informs employees about COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave, but if an employer’s eligible workers don’t frequent a workplace, the employer may send the notice through electronic means (e.g., email).

The DLSE created two model posters, one for food sector workers and a second for all other covered employers. Employers can download the posters and distribute as appropriate.

One final reminder, employers outside of the food sector will need to update their wage statements to provide employees notice of the amount of COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave available each pay period under the new law.

Employers should continue to consult with legal counsel on their obligations under the new law and any interactions with other leave rights under federal and local laws.

James W. Ward, Employment Law Subject Matter Expert/Legal Writer and Editor

CalChamber members and nonmembers can read more about COVID-19: New Federal PSL and Expanded FMLA in the HR Library. Like what you see? See how CalChamber can help you.

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