California Reinstates COVID-19 Paid Leave
Senior Compliance Attorney
On February 9, 2022, California Senate Bill 114, a reinstatement of the COVID Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (CSPSL), was signed into law. This state law will apply to COVID paid sick leave for California-based employees in 2022.
The specifics of the law are outlined below:
- Applies to employers with more than 25 employees on February 19, 2022
- Applies retroactively to January 1, 2022 for qualified leaves and is in effect until September 30, 2022
Amount of Leave
- Provides up to 40 hours of CSPSL in 2 segments (rather than 80 hours in 1 segment)
- Full-time employees working 40 hours per week are entitled to 40 hours of CSPSL if they worked or were scheduled to work at least 40 hours per week in the two weeks preceding the date CSPSL is taken
- Part-time employees with normal weekly schedules are entitled to the total number of hours scheduled for one week, not to exceed 40 hours
- Part-time employees with variable hour schedules are entitled to 7x the average number of hours worked each day in the preceding 6 months, not to exceed 40 hours
- CSPSL is in addition to any other paid sick leave provided by the employer. Employers cannot require employees to use any other paid or unpaid leave, paid time off or vacation time before using or in lieu of using CSPSL
Reasons for Leave
Batch 1 (40 hours):
- Employee subject to quarantine as defined by the California State Department of Public Health, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), or a local public health officer that has jurisdiction over the workplace
- Employee advised by health care providers to quarantine
- Employee experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a diagnosis
- Employee caring for a family member subject to a quarantine period
- Employee caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed or otherwise unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19
- Employee attending an appointment for themselves or a family member to receive a COVID-19 vaccine or booster
- Employee experiencing symptoms, or caring for a family member experiencing symptoms, related to a COVID-19 vaccine or booster that prevents them from working or teleworking
(** Employees can determine how much of this leave they want to use, except that CPSPL may be limited to 24 hours for vaccine-related reasons, unless a medical certification is provided for additional time.)
Batch 2 (40 hours):
- Employee tests positive for COVID-19; or
- Employee’s family member tests positive for COVID-19 and Employee is providing care for the family member.
(** Employer may require documentation of the positive test.)
Rate of Pay
- Calculations align with calculations under “California’s Health Workplaces, Healthy Families Act”
- Non-exempt employees must be paid by one of two options:
- Same manner as the regular rate of pay for the workweek in which the employee uses paid sick time; or
- Dividing the employee’s total wages (not including overtime) by the employee’s total non-overtime hours worked in the full pay periods occurring within the prior 90 days.
- Exempt employees must be paid in the same manner as calculated for other forms of paid leave
- CSPSL is capped at $511/day or $5,110 in aggregate
Wage Statement Requirements:
Employers are required to list the 2022 CPSPL amounts used through the pay period in which it was due to be paid. This requirement is NOT enforceable until the next pay period following February 19, 2022.
Employers must post a notice or provide the notice electronically to employees regarding these new rules. Click here to view the notice.
Employers with more than 25 employees should review this new guidance regarding COVID paid sick leave for any California-based employees and implement accordingly. This is a reminder that regulations regarding the COVID-19 pandemic continue to evolve. We will continue to monitor all relevant changes.