Many business owners feel as though operating within the City of Los Angeles is not an easy task and, unfortunately, the City has recently made it even more challenging. As of July 1, 2016, employers covered by both the California Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 (more on that here) and the City Ordinances will need to comply with the more generous provisions of the Ordinances. The end result? Employees working in the City of Los Angeles will be entitled to up to 48 hours of paid sick leave per year, nearly twice the amount currently required under California law.
Additional ways in which the Ordinances augment existing California law requirements include:
- The definition of “family member” is expanded to include any individual related by blood or affinity whose close association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship.
- Employers are not able to require employees to take sick leave in blocks of at least two hours (as is an option under the California law).
- The exemptions to the California law do not apply and employers exempted from the California law will still need to comply with the Los Angeles Ordinances.
What Do the Ordinances Cover?
The Ordinances may apply to your business, even if it is not located within the city limits, as there is no requirement that an employer be physically located within Los Angeles, or even California. Employers covered by the Ordinances include any person or business entity who directly or indirectly employs or exercises control over the wages, hours, or working conditions of any employee, including through a temporary service or staffing agency.
Employees are eligible if they:
- work at least two hours a week within the City of Los Angeles,
- work in the City of Los Angeles for the same employer for 30 or more days within a year from the commencement of employment, and
- qualify as employees entitled to payment of a minimum wage under the California minimum wage laws.
Some of the more confusing features that you will have to pay attention to include how accrued sick leave can be carried over from year to year, and what caps on accrued sick leave might apply. As well, employers should carefully review the regulations pertaining to how much notice is required by an employee in order to take sick leave, as these may not be entirely consistent with existing California law.
To discuss the myriad of other issues that arise in conflict with California’s Paid Sick Leave law, contact experienced business attorney Drew E. Pomerance today.