Governor Newsom Extends COVID Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (Again) For Employers with More than 25 Employees
The California COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (SPSL) law, originally set to expire on September 30, 2022, has been extended through December 31, 2022. While the law still only applies to employers with more than 25 employees and does not add any additional SPSL entitlement, it gives employees three more months to use the benefits conferred by the law in early 2022 if they are unable to work (on site or remotely) for specific reasons related to COVID-19. For a complete discussion of the SPSL hours entitlement and conditions for use, see our February 10, 2022 Employment Law Bulletin.
The new law has two new features. First, it allows employers to require a COVID-positive employee who tested positive five days after their initial positive test to submit to a second diagnostic test within no less than 24 hours, so long as the employer provides both tests at no cost to the employee. If the employee refuses to test a second time, the employer may stop paying SPSL benefits.
Second, the law establishes a grant program to assist “qualified small businesses or nonprofits” that are incurring SPSL costs. Grant recipients may exclude grant allocations from their gross income for state income tax purposes for tax years beginning 2021 through calendar year 2029. “Qualified small businesses and nonprofits” generally include corporations, limited liability companies, partnerships, limited partnerships and registered nonprofits that provided SPSL during calendar year 2022, so long as they began operating before June 1, 2021 and have 26 to 49 employees. Grants are not available to sole proprietorships or employers with more than 49 employees.
Please contact an SMT employment law attorney if you have questions about your SPSL obligations or if you need assistance with any other employment law needs.
No Se Habla Español?
SMT’s employment attorneys can provide your company with employment policies, forms and employee disciplinary documentation in Spanish. Providing such important information to employees in the language they understand is critical to employee performance, providing a welcoming diverse work environment, and protecting your company against employment claims. Contact an SMT attorney today to get started.
Spaulding McCullough & Tansil LLP
Employment Law Group