Summary of Current Employment Law Bills In The California Legislature

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As the California Legislative Assembly works hard into 2021, new labor and employment bills are typically part of the landscape of prospective legislation. As well as managing remote workforces, employers have been yet again required to adhere to significant new legislation in 2021. There is no reason to believe that this will not be the case yet again in 2022. Workers must always ensure that they are taking complete advantage of the protections offered by California’s labor and employment laws. If you are concerned that your rights have been violated, call Moss Bollinger to discuss your options. The consultation is free.

Here is a list and summary of some of the bills currently under consideration in 2021.

AB-95 New Bereavement Leave Mandate: AB-95 imposes an obligation on all employers to provide employees bereavement leave upon the death of a spouse, child, parent, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, or domestic partner, regardless of the duration of time that the employee has worked for the employer.

AB-995 Sick Leave Expansion: This Act requires all employers to provide five days of paid sick leave to employees. AB-995 would also require employers to permit a total paid sick leave accrual of 80 hours.

AB-1003 Wage Theft Punishable as Grand Theft: AB-1003 would make the intentional theft of wages, even by mistake punishable as grand theft. An employee may bring a civil action to recover wages, benefits, and other compensation.

AB-1074 Rehiring Displaced Workers: This legislation, if passed, would require employers to provide laid-off janitorial and hotel services’ employees specific information regarding available job positions for which they may qualify. “Laid-off employees” are defined as those who worked for the employer for six or more of the twelve months preceding January 1, 2020, and laid-off for a COVID-19 related reason.

AB-1179 Employer Childcare Funding: AB-1179 would require employers with 1,000 or more employees to provide up to 60 hours of paid backup childcare to employees who have been employed for at least 30 days. This law would apply to employee childcare when a regular childcare provider is unavailable.

SB-213 Presumption of Injury: This Senate Bill would create a presumption of work-related injury for health-facility employees who contract COVID-19. It would also expand the presumption of work-related injury for hospital employees who provide direct patient care. This new definition would include illness or death caused by blood-borne infectious diseases, MERSA, Tuberculosis, Meningitis, and COVID-19.

SB-606 Cal/OSHA Authority: SB-606 would require Cal/OSHA to cite those parties who violate certain provisions related to the spraying of asbestos. If an employer has multiple worksites and a written policy that violates this law, SB-606 would also create a rebuttable presumption that policy requires enterprise-wide abatement. It would also create a rebuttable presumption of employer retaliation for an employee discharged within 90 days of disclosing a COVID-19 diagnosis due to workplace exposure, or for requesting testing for COVID-19 because of workplace exposure.

Violations of California’s labor and employment laws may have severe consequences. Many require employers to pay the attorneys’ fees and costs of a lawsuit if the employee wins the case. If you are a worker in California, a free consultation with the experienced employment law attorneys at Moss Bollinger to ensure that your rights are protected is risk-free. If your employer has engaged in any illegal conduct under California law, contact Moss Bollinger today at 866-942-7974 or reach us online.