Two New Labor Laws Taking Effect January 1

Date: November 16, 2020

Podcast: Another already in effect add to small businesses' costs and regulatory compliance headaches

More than any of the others, two new laws taking effect Jan. 1, 2021, and one already in effect, need the special attention of California small-business owners who will be required to comply with them – and absorb their associated costs.

Ben Ebbink, an expert in California employment and labor law, joined Kevin Pedrotti, NFIB California’s chief legislative advocate, for a half-hour podcast on the three most impactful for small-business owners legislative bills that were signed into law.

For 15 years, Ebbink served as chief consultant to the California Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment where he was the primary policy expert on labor and employment matters for the California State Assembly.  He has played a key role in virtually every major labor and employment issue to come before the Legislature during his tenure, and personally drafted hundreds of legislative proposals. More about him can be read here.

This podcast will discuss:

  • the changes made to the California Family Rights Act by Senate Bill 1383, which, among other things, dropped the employee threshold from 50 to five. Furthermore, leave time can be taken in segments, including a whole day, and the new law severely crimps the flexibility of employers to work with their employees. Yes, it’s unpaid leave, but benefits must still be paid and the job must be there for a returning employee
  • new notification requirements for exposure to COVID brought about by Assembly Bill 685. Ebbink and Pedrotti talk about what triggers an obligation to notify employees and if the information is public
  • and what legislative changes Senate Bill 1159, a law already in effect, made to the governor’s executive order making all COVID cases workers’ compensation cases for those working outside the home. What is a conclusive presumption vs. a rebuttable presumption? Will workers’ compensation premiums go up for small-business owners? Ebbink thinks so. “Essentially what this [new law] is doing, if you take a step back, is it’s shifting the medical costs of the COVID crisis onto the backs of the workers’ compensation system.”

Click the arrow on the graphic below to start listening, and click here to listen to all previous podcasts.

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