California

Below you will find any recent or upcoming changes to the family and medical leave and/or leave income replacement benefit law(s) within this state.

California State Disability (SDI) and Paid Family Leave (PFL) benefits and the California Family Rights Act (CFRA)

What is the Update?

California State Disability Insurance (SDI) and Paid Family Leave (PFL)

Update (09/30/22): The taxable wage ceiling (the maximum amount from which contributions to State Disability Insurance are taken) will be removed starting on January 1, 2024. The weekly benefit for SDI/PFL is 60% or 70% (based on earnings). This will remain the case until January 1, 2025. As of January 1, 2025, the benefit percentage will increase to 90% for lower wage earners (those earning 70% or less than the state average quarterly wage).

Update (11/18/22): The EDD has confirmed the final taxable wage ceiling, maximum contribution amount, and maximum weekly benefit amount for 2023. The SDI/PFL contribution rate is at 0.9%, Additionally, the taxable wage ceiling will increase from $145,600 to $153,164. The maximum cost for employees will decrease from $1,601.60 to $1,378.48. The maximum weekly benefit amount that an employee can receive when they make a claim for SDI or PFL will be $1,620 per week. These changes go into effect as of January 1, 2023.

For our clients with Voluntary Plans, please note that the updated VP assessment rate is now 0.00126% (a decrease from 0.00154%). We will be reaching out to our current Voluntary Plan clients to discuss how the 2023 changes may impact their plan.

California Family Rights Act (CFRA)

Effective January 1, 2023, public and private employers with five or more employees are expected to provide employees with at least 30 days of service, up to five unpaid days of bereavement leave upon the death of a family member. “Family Member” is defined as a spouse or a child, parent, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, domestic partner, or parent-in-law. Leave would need to be completed within 3 months of the date of the family member’s death and does not have to be taken consecutively. There does not appear to be a limit for how many times an employee can be eligible for CFRA bereavement leave, but we are confirming this with the state. Those eligible for CFRA bereavement leave must be allowed to take 5 unpaid days under the law. If you have a policy which provides less than 5 days of pay (e.g. you provide 3 days of pay) for bereavement leave, you are not obligated to provide more paid days to employees, as CFRA bereavement leave is, in principle, unpaid leave. However, for any unpaid bereavement leave, CFRA eligible employees may use accrued paid leave otherwise available to the employee for the unpaid days.

Further, the definition of “family member” under CFRA expands after January 1, 2023. Employees will be able to care for a “designated person” who has a serious health condition. “Designated person” means any individual related by blood or whose association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship. Employers may limit an employee to one designated person per 12-month period for family care and medical leave.

Handbook/Policy Updates

The CFRA is required to be within your handbook. Employers should add “designated person,” and CFRA bereavement leave (see above) to the CFRA section of your handbook effective January 1, 2023. It may also be advisable to refer to the CFRA bereavement leave specifically within your bereavement leave policy, however, please consult your own legal team if you have questions.

Notice Requirements

The workplace CFRA related posters for birthing parents and non-birthing parents may change to add the expanded definition of family members, and to include Bereavement Leave. We will monitor the notices and provide an update if new versions become available.

Larkin Action

The Larkin Company will consider any law changes carefully, and update our internal resources and processes, as well as our employee leave information packets, if necessary.

We will continue to monitor any updates regarding the laws and will keep our clients updated.

Further Company Considerations

Please be sure to adjust your contributions in line with the updates, effective 2023.

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Disclaimer

The Larkin Company has taken reasonable steps to ensure the accuracy of the information on this page, however we make no representation or warranty of any kind as to its accuracy or completeness. These resources should not be construed or substituted for legal advice. Accordingly, before taking any actions based upon such information provided herein, we encourage you to seek competent legal advice from a licensed attorney or appropriate professionals.