COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave Returning to California Workplaces

Weintraub Tobin

In the midst of the winter COVID-19 surge, Governor Newsom and California legislative leaders have agreed to fast-track a plan to provide emergency COVID-19 relief.  As part of that package, another allotment of Paid Sick Leave for COVID-19 will once again be available to California workers.

The details have not been released but here is what we expect:

  • The new leave program will be made retroactive to January 1 and will extend through September 30, 2022.
  • It applies to employers with 26 or more employees.
  • Full-time workers will be entitled to 40 hours of paid sick leave when they are sick or caring for a family member with COVID-19 – this amount of time mirrors current health guidelines to quarantine after testing positive.
  • The 40-hour allotment would be prorated for part-time employees.
  • Up to 40 more hours would be available to an employee if needed, but to be eligible for this, an employee will be required to provide proof of a positive test.
  • An additional 24 hours of leave will be available for time off to get vaccinated or to recover from vaccine side effects.
  • Although federal tax credits that offset the cost of providing COVID-19 sick leave have expired, the state plans to offer some relief to businesses including restored tax credits, and the state plans to inject additional funding for the Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program.

Once the plan has been signed into law, we will update this blog.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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