California Paid Sick Leave Opinion Letter Brings Clarity

The California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement released an opinion letter clarifying what 24 hours or 3 days of leave actually means.  Unsurprisingly, it is not as simple as saying 8 hours a day for 3 days is 24 hours.  What about those employees who don’t work 8 hours a day? 

For example, do you provide an employee only 8 hours per day of paid sick leave if they work a 10 hour day?  Of course not, says California DLSE.  These employees would need to be given 30 hours instead of 24 to make a full 3 days.

Now let’s look at this in reverse.  For example, for an employee that works a 4 hour day, do you give this individual 24 hours if you are front loading their available paid sick leave hours?  The law indicates 24 hours or 3 days.  Now you may be asking yourself, how many paid sick leave days do we allow this individual?  You guessed it - 6 days.

The bottom line is that you may have to provide more hours for one group of employees who work longer days or provide more days of paid sick leave to those who work shorter days, because each employee is entitled to 24 hours minimum for paid sick leave.

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