New Employment Laws to Know
California has some of the most progressive and ever-changing employment laws in the United States, and each year, it is important for employers to familiarize themselves with new laws that went into effect at the start of the year. The following are two important laws companies should know about, and to discuss a specific concern, contact our Encino employment defense attorneys directly.
CFRA Expansion and Repeal of New Parent Leave Act
As of January 1, 2021, SB 1383 went into effect, amending and expanding the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). This Act is the state version of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), but with more protections for employees, and even more under the new expanded version. Some key changes include:
- The CFRA used to apply to companies with 50 or more employees, but it now applies to all employers with five or more employees
- Leave to care for a qualified family member now includes siblings, grandchildren, or grandparents
- Employees can now take leave to bond with the child of their domestic partner
- Employers can no longer refuse to reinstate “key” employees because they needed to be immediately replaced
- If both parents work for the same employer, the employer must grant up to 12 weeks of leave to each one
The legislature also repealed the New Parent Leave Act, which specifically granted leave rights to parents. However, repealing this law takes no rights away from employees now that the CFRA applies to employers with five or more employees. The Act was simply redundant and, therefore, repealed.
Protected Time Off for Crime Victims
California employment laws provide leave rights to employees who are crime victims, and the legislature also expanded this law. The law prohibits employers of 25 or more employees from discriminating or retaliating against (including firing) employees who need time off work related to hearings or their rights as crime victims, such as obtaining protective orders or meeting with the authorities.
Some changes that went into effect on January 1, 2021, include:
- The law used to protect employees who were victims of stalking, rape, and domestic violence, but it now covers victims of any crime, whether it is a misdemeanor or felony offense.
- Employees can now prove they are obtaining victim’s relief to an employer by presenting documents from a victim advocate or a signed statement written by the employee itself. Previously, acceptable proof was only a court order, police report, or healthcare provider reports.
- Leave can now be taken to receive services from any victim’s agency or organization. The prior version of the law only provided leave for help from rape crisis centers or domestic violence shelters.
Contact Our Encino Employment Defense Lawyer for More Information
Employment laws are always changing, and employers need to know when they must uphold expended employee rights under the law. Employers can benefit from the help of an Encino employment attorney at Kaufman McAndrew LLP. Contact us online or call 818-788-5767 to learn more about how we help California employers.