Publication Details

The California Legislative Report - March 2019

Mar 29, 2019 | Related Attorney Michael S. Kalt | Topic: Employment

As the April 26th deadline for bills to pass key committee votes approaches, the 2019-2020 California Legislative Session is beginning to come into clearer focus.  And once again, there are a number of significant employment bills pending, including bills that would:

  • Prohibit mandatory pre-employment arbitration agreements for Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and/or Labor Code violations (AB 51);
  • Clarify that employees who received sexual harassment training in 2018 need not be re-trained in 2019 (SB 778);
  • Impose joint liability for harassment upon client employers and labor contractors (AB 170);
  • Amend the Labor Code to preclude discrimination or retaliation against sexual harassment victims and their family members (AB 171 and AB 628);
  • Extend the statute of limitations for FEHA claims from one to three years (AB 9) and for Labor Code claims from six months to three years (AB 403);
  • Preclude discrimination based upon hair texture and hairstyles (SB 188);
  • Expand CFRA leave to employers with five or more employees and only require 180 days service (rather than 1,250 hours and 12 months of service) (SB 135);
  • Create CFRA leave for part-time employees working 900 hours (AB 1224);
  • Increase California’s annual paid sick leave requirements from three to five days (AB 555);
  • Require employers to provide up to thirty days unpaid leave for organ donations (AB 1223);
  • Further expand workplace lactation accommodation requirements (SB 142);
  • Prohibit so-called “no rehire” provisions in employment-related settlement agreements (AB 749);
  • Address the California Supreme Court’s Dynamex ruling regarding independent contractors (AB 5, AB 71 and SB 238);
  • Encourage employers to assist employees with student loan repayment assistance (AB 152); and
  • Require larger employers to submit annual “pay data reports” (SB 171).

There also are a number of so-called “spot bills” remaining on a wide range of employment subjects, suggesting this list may still expand.

As mentioned, the next major deadlines are the April 26th deadline for bills to pass key policy committee votes and the May 31st deadline for bills to pass the first legislative chamber.  Many of these bills will likely undergo significant amendments as these deadlines approach.

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