The California Labor Commissioner’s enforcement office (“DLSE”) has issued a model notice and FAQs regarding California's SB 95 2021 COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (“CSPSL) law. As noted in our recently-issued legal update on the CSPSL (click here), SB 95 is effective on March 29, 2021 and is retroactive to January 1, 2021.
The CSPSL model notice can be accessed here.
The CSPSL notice must be posted in a “conspicuous place” in the workplace, and should generally be posted in the same location at which other required workplace notices are posted. The notice should be posted as soon as possible, and definitely not later than the effective date of the law on March 29, 2021. Covered employers may also provide the notice electronically or by mail to remote workers.
The Labor Commission also issued FAQs on CSPSL compliance. Those FAQs can be found here. Employers should carefully review these FAQs for further information about this new leave law. The Labor Commission regularly updates its frequently asked questions, so be sure to circle back in the near future.
SB 95 does not provide a tax credit like the FFCRA. However, as of April 1, 2021, under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (“ARPA”) (and as noted in our recently-issued legal update here), employers that voluntarily continue to offer the Emergency Paid Sick Leave (“ESPL”) and/or Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (“EFMLEA”) benefits under the FFCRA will be eligible for federal tax credits/offsets or tax reimbursements through September 30, 2021. Because the CSPSL eligibility requirements align with those under the FFCRA ESPL for the most part, employers can voluntarily offer FFCRA benefits and take advantage of the FFCRA tax credits where the two laws overlap, while also complying with the mandates of SB 95's CSPSL.
Note, however, that vaccine appointments are not qualifying FFCRA events prior to the ARPA's effective date. Therefore, while employers must apply CSPSL to vaccine appointments retroactive to January 1, 2021, they may not receive tax credits for those payments prior to April 1, 2021. Employers are strongly encouraged to consult with their tax professional about the availability of FFCRA tax credits for specific payments made in their particular business.
For further information regarding COVID-19 questions, or other employment law issues, contact the attorneys at LightGabler.