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California Supplemental Paid Sick Leave 2022

February 11, 2022

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill that requires employers to provide COVID-19 related Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (SPSL).
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At a Glance

  • Effective from February 19th, 2022 until September 30th, 2022
  • Retroactive from January 1st, 2022
  • Applies to employers with 25 or more employees
  • Eligible full-time employees may be entitled to up to 80 hours of SPSL
  • Employers may require employees to provide proof of a positive COVID test to utilize additional SPSL

Introduction

On February 9th, 2022, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill that requires employers to provide COVID-19 related Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (SPSL). The effective date of this bill is February 19th, 2022 but has a retroactive date of January 1st, 2022. The SPSL requirement will be effective until September 30th, 2022. There are many similarities between the previous 2021 SPSL legislation and the current 2022 SPSL legislation. The following outlines the 2022 requirements and how they differ from the 2021 requirements.

Eligibility and Retroactivity 

Eligibility 

Like the 2021 legislation, the current legislation requires employers with 25 or more employees to provide Supplemental Paid Sick Leave to their employees. A covered employee means an employee who is unable to work or telework for the employer due to COVID-19 related reasons (see below for acceptable uses).

Retroactivity

This bill requires that the SPSL hours are retroactive to January 1, 2022. An employer may require a covered employee to provide documentation of a positive COVID-19 diagnostic test during the relevant period if an employee requests retroactive payment of the COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave. For any retroactive payment, the number of hours of leave corresponding to the amount of the retroactive payment shall count towards the total number of hours of SPSL that the employer is required to provide to the covered employee. After the employee provides an oral or written request to take the leave, any retroactive payments must be paid on or before the payday for the next full pay period.

Supplemental Paid Sick Leave: Bank One

Covered employees are eligible to receive up to 40 hours of Supplemental Paid Sick Leave for the reasons listed in the “Acceptable Uses” section below.

Hours

An eligible employee is entitled to 40 hours of SPSL, if the employer considers the covered employee to work full time and/or if the covered employee worked or was scheduled to work, on average, at least 40 hours per week for the employer in the two weeks preceding the date the covered employee took SPSL. If the covered employee has a normal weekly schedule, then the total number of SPSL hours would be the hours the employee is normally scheduled to work for the employer over one week.

Acceptable Uses

Employees are entitled to use the above Supplemental Paid Sick leave (Bank One) for the following reasons:

  • The covered employee is subject to a qualifying quarantine or isolation period related to COVID-19.
  • The covered employee is under a qualifying quarantine.
  • The covered employee is attending an appointment for themselves or a family member to receive a vaccine or a vaccine booster for protection against COVID-19.
  • The covered employee is experiencing symptoms or caring for a family member experiencing symptoms, related to a COVID-19 vaccine or vaccine booster that prevents the employee from being able to work or telework.
  • The covered employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis.
  • The covered employee is caring for a family member who is subject to an order or guidance or who has been advised to isolate or quarantine.
  • The covered employee is caring for a child, whose school or place of care is closed or otherwise unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19 on the premises.

For purposes of SPSL, “family member” means parent, child, spouse, registered domestic partner, grandparent, grandchild, and sibling.

Additional Supplemental Paid Sick Leave: Bank Two 

New for 2022, covered employees are entitled to, in addition to the Supplemental Paid Sick Leave described above, up to 40 more hours of Additional SPSL if the covered employee, or a family member for whom the covered employee is providing care, tests positive for COVID-19. The total amount of hours an employee is entitled to for Additional SPSL is determined using the same criteria used for SPSL above.

Employers are permitted, but not required to request documentation from an employee in order for the employee to receive the 40 hours of Additional SPSL.

Documentation Requirements

 

Permitted Documentation Required

Self

An initial positive test and a second test on or after 5th day of the first positive test

Other Family Member

Initial test result

If the employer requires the employee to test after the 5th day, the test must be made available at no cost to the employee. The employer has no obligation to provide additional SPSL for an employee who refuses to provide documentation of the results of the test[s] described above upon the request of the employer.

Acceptable Uses

Employees are entitled to use the Additional Supplemental Paid Sick leave for the following reasons only:

  • If the covered employee tests positive for COVID-19.
  • If a family member for whom the covered employee is providing care, tests positive for COVID-19.

For purposes of SPSL, “family member” means parent, child, spouse, registered domestic partner, grandparent, grandchild, and sibling.

Documentation 

As stated above, a new requirement for this 2022 legislation is that employers may require proof of a positive test of the employee or of an eligible family member that tests positive for COVID-19. The bill text also does not specify what type of documentation is required to be provided to the employer. We expect further guidance to be provided by the agency in the coming weeks.

Rate of Pay

The rate of pay described below applies to both SPSL and Additional SPSL.
For nonexempt employees, the rate of pay is either;

  • The employees regular rate of pay, or
  • The rate can be calculated by dividing the employees total wages, not including overtime, by the employees non-overtime hours in the full pay periods occurring in the 90 days prior to taking the leave.

For exempt employees, the leave should be paid at the same rate as the employer calculates wages for other forms of paid leave. There is a cap of $511 per day and $5,110 total. If the calculations above provide for a higher amount, employers can cap it at the above amounts. If an employee hits the cap, they can elect to use other forms of paid leave so they can receive their full wages while on leave.

Recordkeeping Requirements 

Like all other paid sick leave requirements in the state of California, the amount of available and used hours for SPSL must be shown on the pay stub or on a written statement.

The employer shall provide an employee with a written notice that sets forth the amount of SPSL that the employee has used through the pay period in which it was due to be paid on either the employee’s itemized wage statement or in a separate writing provided on the designated pay date with the employee’s payment of wages. The employer shall list zero hours used if a worker has not used any Supplemental Paid Sick Leave.


For more information on California's wage and payroll tax laws, check out our California Wage and Payroll Tax Facts page.


Next Steps

California’s Department of Industrial Relations will create and provide a notice within 7 days of February 9th, 2022. Paylocity will be monitoring for any additional guidance the agency may provide and will update our systems to reflect this requirement.

Thank you for choosing Paylocity as your Payroll Tax and HCM partner. This information is provided as a courtesy, may change and is not intended as legal or tax guidance. Employers with questions or concerns outside the scope of a Payroll Service Provider are encouraged to seek the advice of a qualified CPA, Tax Attorney or Advisor.

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