The California Legislature is considering reinstating and extending the Federal COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave policies that expired on December 31, 2020.
Last year the Federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) created two leave policies specific to COVID-19 related absences: the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (“EPSL”) and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (“EFMLEA”). These leave policies entitled public and private employees to paid sick leave for reasons related to COVID-19.
These leave policies expired on December 31, 2020 and were not extended by the Federal Government. As a result, employees wishing to take leave for COVID-19 related reasons were thereafter required to utilize alternative leave policies or take leave unpaid if they were sick or caring for someone with COVID-19.
California Assembly Bill 84 (“AB 84”), as proposed, would entitle private and public employees—including those working for school districts and community college districts—to up to 80 hours of paid sick leave for the following reasons:
1. The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19.
2. The employee is advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine or self-isolate due to concerns related to COVID-19.
3. The employee is prohibited from working by the employer due to health concerns related to the potential transmission of COVID-19.
4. The employee is attending an appointment to receive a vaccine for protection against contracting COVID-19.
5. The employee is experiencing symptoms related to a COVID-19 vaccine that prevents the employee from being able to work.
6. The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis.
7. The employee is caring for an individual who is subject to a quarantine or isolation order, has been advised to self-quarantine or self-isolate, or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis.
8. The employee is caring for an individual whose school or place of care is closed or otherwise unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19.
If approved by the Legislature and signed by the Governor, AB 84 will be retroactively effective as of January 1, 2021, and will be set to expire on September 30, 2021.