New Employment Laws for 2023: What California Employers Need to Know

2023 saw more people engaged with in-person, positive community as COVID-19 infections and serious cases declined. Yet, last year in our state was also marked with difficult impacts of politics, social media, the economy, divergent weather, wildfires and water scarcity. And, almost as sure as the sun rises each day, regulation of California employers increased too. More than 580 bills introduced in the last California legislative session mention “employer,” compared to about 330 bills in 2021.

While most bills did not pass the legislature, many were signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom, bringing more rules and risks for employers dealing with workplace safety, privacy, leaves of absence, anti-discrimination, wages, benefits and working conditions.

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Employees Gain New Protections for Pregnancy, Childbirth Recovery and Lactation

The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA), which was signed into law on December 29, 2022, and will become effective as of June 27, 2023, generally will require employers to accommodate pregnant applicants and employees (including “temp” workers) in the same manner as individuals with disabilities. Nothing in the PWFA constrains states and localities from enacting and enforcing, or continuing to enforce, laws with greater protections for pregnant workers.

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FTC’s Proposed Rule Banning Employment-Based Non-competes

The Federal Trade Commission announced a proposed rule that would, if adopted, ban the use of employment-based non-competes and require employers to rescind existing non-competes. The FTC’s proposed rule would reshape large segments of the American economy and supplant numerous recently enacted state statutes restricting the permissible use of non-competes and other restrictive covenants. If the proposed rule becomes effective, employers will need to consider alternatives to protect customer and employee relationships, and confidential information.

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Ready or Not, Colorado’s FAMLI Program is Here and With New Year Requirements

Colorado’s long-anticipated Family and Medical Leave Insurance (FAMLI) program is right around the corner for employee use — but employer requirements are already here. Effective January 1, 2023, employers have certain obligations under the FAMLI program, including notice requirements and upcoming premium payments. Below is a refresh on FAMLI program basics, an outline of current FAMLI program requirements, considerations for the upcoming months in preparation for 2024, and some additional information regarding private FAMLI programs.

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Employers, It’s Happening! New York State Enacts Pay Transparency Law

On December 21, 2022, Governor Kathy Hochul signed Senate Bill S9427A (the NY Law), which requires covered employers to include salary or wage range—and the job description—in job postings.  The NY Law will go into effect on September 17, 2023.  New York joins a growing trend of wage transparency efforts by a number of states, counties and cities as a way to close the wage gap for women and workers of color.  With New York, approximately 20 percent of the American population will live or work in a state requiring pay transparency.

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State & Local Employment Law Developments: Q4 2022

The trend of increasing workplace regulations by state and local governments continued throughout the fourth quarter of 2022. Although it is not possible to discuss all state and local laws, this update provides an overview of recent and upcoming legislative developments to help you and your organization stay in compliance. (Please note that developments related to issues such as minimum wage rates and COVID-19 are not included.)

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