Frequently Asked Questions for the Labor Commissioner Connect Work Day Duration to Eligibility for Paid Sick Leave

Title: Understanding California’s New Paid Sick Leave Law for Alternative Workweek Employees

Introduction:
As an employer in California, it is important to stay updated on the state’s labor laws and regulations. One recent change that may affect your business is the increase in required time off for paid sick leave. This article will provide an overview of the new law and how it applies to employees who work an alternative workweek schedule.

Background:
In 2014, the California Legislature passed the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act, which required employers to provide 24 hours or 3 days of paid sick leave to their employees. However, starting January 1, 2024, this law was amended by SB 616, increasing the required time off to 40 hours or 5 days.

Understanding the Law:
The specific language regarding the required time off can be found in California Labor Code Section 246. This section states that employers must provide “40 hours or 5 days” of paid sick leave to their employees. The California Labor Commissioner has clarified that this means employees are entitled to the greater of either 40 hours or 5 days of time off.

Application to Alternative Workweek Employees:
If your employees work an alternative workweek schedule consisting of four 10-hour shifts per week, they are entitled to use 50 hours of paid sick leave per year under the new law. This is because 10 hours per day multiplied by 5 days equals 50 hours, which is greater than the required 40 hours.

However, if your employees work only 6 hours per day, they are still entitled to use 40 hours of paid sick leave per year. This is because 6 hours per day multiplied by 5 days equals 30 hours, which is less than the required 40 hours.

Additional Resources:
If you have further questions about the new paid sick leave law, you can refer to the Paid Sick Leave section in the HR Library on the HRCalifornia website. This resource provides detailed information and guidance on various labor laws and regulations in California.

Conclusion:
As an employer, it is your responsibility to ensure compliance with all labor laws and regulations in California. With the recent increase in required time off for paid sick leave, it is important to understand how this law applies to your employees who work an alternative workweek schedule. By staying informed and following the guidelines set by the California Labor Commissioner, you can ensure a fair and compliant workplace for your employees. 

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