Important Employment Laws Going into Effect On January 1, 2021

This entry was posted on Thursday, December 31st, 2020 and is filed under Corporate Law, Employment Law.

SICK LEAVE: KIN CARE FOR EMPLOYEES

AB 2017 allows the automatic accrual of six months’ of paid sick leave for employees, and the designation of sick leave to be at the sole discretion of the employee when an employee takes sick leave to attend to the illness of a family member.

This bill and section 233 amendment of the Labor Code can be found here.

EXEMPTION FROM REST PERIOD REQUIREMENTS FOR SAFETY SENSITIVE POSITIONS AT PETROLEUM FACILITIES ONLY

Existing law prohibited employers from requiring an employee to work during a mandated meal or rest or recovery period. Failure to provide an employee with a mandated meal or rest or recovery period required that the employer pay one additional hour of pay at the employee’s regular rate of compensation for each workday that the meal or rest or recovery period was not provided.

New law coming into effect will provide an exemption from the rest period requirements for specified employees who hold a safety-sensitive position at a petroleum facility, as defined, to the extent that the employee is required to carry and monitor a communication device and to respond to emergencies, or is required to remain on employer premises to monitor the premises and respond to emergencies. We include this law because their is industry-wide confusion that it may apply to other safety positions outside of the petroleum industry. It does not. The exemption will not apply to any other industry.

This bill and exemption can be found here.

SUCCESSOR LIABILITY FOR UNPAID WAGES

Not going into effect until January 1, 2022, this new law expands successor liability for labor code judgments and was enacted to prevent business owners who violate the labor code from escaping liability when starting a new business after leaving the liable one. Specifically, AB 3075 adds Section 200.3 to the Labor Code. The new law provides that “a successor to any judgment debtor shall be liable for any wages, damages, and penalties owed to any of the judgment debtor’s former workforce pursuant to a final judgment.”

See AB30754 here.

A related a law amending Corporations Code Section 1502, goes into effect immediately and expands the information California corporations must include in their statement of information filed with the Secretary of State to include information.

The bill and amendment of Section 1502 of the Corporations Code with a full list of the requirements can be found here.

STATE AND LOCAL MINIMUM WAGE INCREASES AGAIN

The minimum wage in California increases to $14.00 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees and to $13.00 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer employees on January 1, 2021. Additionally, various cities and localities have posted minimum wage changes that exceed the state minimum wage requirements. The following local minimum wages go into effect on January 1, 2021, regardless of employer size:

CityRequired Minimum Wage as of Jan. 1 
Belmont$15.90 per hour
Cupertino$15.65 per hour
Daly City$15.00 per hour
El Cerrito$15.61 per hour
Half Moon Bay$15.00 per hour
Los Altos$15.65 per hour
Menlo Park$15.25 per hour
Oakland$14.36 per hour
Petaluma$15.20 per hour
Palo Alto$15.65 per hour
Redwood City$15.62 per hour
Richmond$15.21 per hour
San Carlos$15.24 per hour
San Diego$14.00 per hour
San Jose$15.45 per hour
San Mateo$15.62 per hour
Santa Clara$15.65 per hour
Santa Rosa$15.20 per hour
South San Francisco$15.24 per hour
Sunnyvale$16.30 per hour

If you have any questions or would like to have your businesses’ needs assessed in light of these new laws, please reach out to the attorneys at Katchko, Vitiello & Karikomi, PC.