Top 5 California Employment Law Changes for 2024

Contractors working in the state will see changes to the minimum wage, paid leave, cannabis rights and more.

HR Dive

January 2, 2024

1 Min Read
rschlie via Getty Images

Employers subject to California’s employment laws will see a few additions in 2024, according to Caroline Donelan, partner at Blank Rome. Changes will affect compensation, leave and cannabis rights, among other things.

Donelan outlined what she deemed the “top five” legal updates coming out of the Golden State in a Dec. 7 webinar.

California employees will soon generally be entitled to five days or 40 hours, whichever is greater, of 

paid sick and safe leave


Donelan said some of her firm’s clients have chosen to maintain one comprehensive PTO policy, but employers that choose this path must ensure they’re allowing workers to use time off for covered reasons. Local laws may overlap with this requirement, too, and may even conflict when it comes to documentation requirements, she noted, suggesting employers consult legal counsel before requiring documentation or disciplining an employee for failing to provide documentation.

Employers may want to make particular note of the law’s coverage of leave for the health condition of someone an employee names as their “designated person.” A traditional familial relationship is not required, Donelan said; “This is a brand new, very progressive — relatively speaking — [...] form of protective leave.”

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