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The New California Employment Laws for 2024 & Updated Minimum Wage Requirements CA Municipalities Chart

New Laws for CA employers 2024 - Symmetry HR Outsourcing

There are (as always) a number of new laws affecting employers going into effect at the beginning of the year.

Paid Sick Leave Law Expansion

Governor Newsom enacted SB 616 and SB 848, expanding California's paid sick leave law to increase mandatory leave from three days or 24 hours to five days or 40 hours, with higher caps on accrual and rollover, and introducing a new provision for up to five days of leave for reproductive losses such as miscarriages or failed adoptions. These changes retain the original law's framework while significantly extending employee benefits. 

New Leave of Absence

SB 848 introduces a new leave policy, mandating employers to offer up to five days off for various reproductive losses like miscarriages, failed adoptions, surrogacy issues, stillbirths, or unsuccessful assisted reproductions. 

Cannabis Discrimination

A new cannabis discrimination law will prohibit employers from discriminating based on off-job cannabis use, although they can still conduct preemployment drug tests and refuse hires based on psychoactive cannabis metabolites. Additionally, employers are not allowed to inquire about applicants' past cannabis use or consider it from criminal history records, except as permitted under the state's Fair Chance Act, which restricts how criminal history can influence employment decisions. 

New Retaliation Protections

California's SB 497 strengthens retaliation protections by introducing a rebuttable presumption that favors employees: if an employer takes adverse action against an employee within 90 days of a protected activity, such as filing a wage-and-hour complaint or whistleblowing, the law will assume retaliation. This shifts the burden of proof to the employer to provide sufficient evidence to counter this presumption. 



Download the NEW 2024 CA Minimum Wage Chart.

CA 2024 Min Wages
Download PDF • 369KB

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