Acclaim Attorney, Zein Obagi Jr., Notes Five Major Changes to California Employment Law in 2021

Zein Obagi Jr.

LOS ANGELES, CA, UNITED STATES, February 22, 2021 / — Last year, primarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there were unprecedented changes to the California employment law. The pandemic continued to rage on as the calendar turned to 2021, and the revisions to California employment law have continued.

Five significant changes in particular note to the employment law of California and their possible effect on business have been listed below. Take the time to become acquainted with these shifts, whether you are an employer or an employee. Increasing the state minimum wage, new leave and pay reporting requirements, and new rights for victims of crime are some of the most relevant modifications and amendments.

1. Changes to California’s Family Rights Act (CFRA)

SB 1383 expanded California’s Family Rights Act (CFRA) to cover employers with five or more employees. The new law also extended the qualified reasons why eligible workers can take leave under CFRA and removed some limitations on use, such as the requirement that staff operate within 75 miles of the workplace.

2. Employees can now use sick days for kin care or personal sick leave

AB 2017 amends California’s Labor Code Section 233 to permit employees to designate sick leave as for kin care, to attend to their own illness or health condition, or obtain relief if the worker has been a victim of sexual assault, domestic violence, or stalking. The new workplace legislation allows employers to amend their sick-leave policies to ensure that their employees are informed, at the sole discretion of the employee, of their right to designate sick days.

3. Employees have more time to file DLSE complaints

AB 1947 extends the statute of limitations to file complaints with the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) when employees believe that they were discriminated against or wrongfully terminated. The law, specified in California’s Labor Code Section 98.7, extends the deadline for workers to file DLSE grievances from six months to one year.

4. Expanded entitlement to leave for victims of crimes

AB 2992 amends California’s Labor Code Section 230 to expand an employee’s entitlement to leave if they were a victim of a crime. Employers are forbidden under the amended law from discriminating, retaliating against or discharging workers who take time off work to seek relief if they have been victims of a crime or violence that has incurred physical and/or mental injury.

The previous version of the law covered victims of:

Sexual assault
Domestic violence

The new amendment expands the entitlement to leave for victims of crimes “that caused physical injury or that caused mental injury and a threat of physical injury.” Also, the new law protects an employee’s entitlement to leave if their immediate family member was killed “as a direct result of a crime.”

5. Increased state minimum wage

The state minimum wage increase is one of the most awaited employment laws in 2021. Employers with 26 or more staff are expected to pay their workforce at least $14 per hour beginning Jan. 1, 2021. In the meantime, employers with 25 or less jobs may not pay less than $13 per hour.

Contact an experienced Los Angeles employment law attorney to help you navigate all the changes to California’s employment law. Schedule a consultation with our lawyers at Obagi Law Group, P.C. to find out how the new laws affect your particular situation as an employer or employee in California. Call at 424-284-2401 to receive a consultation.


Zein E. Obagi Jr.

With more than a decade of experience as a licensed attorney serving Californians, Zein E. Obagi, Jr. carries a reputation as a game-changing fierce advocate. He fights for employees who have fallen victim to hostile employers and for individuals who have lost assets to dishonest business partners. With his combination of experience, passion and willingness to bring the full power of the law to bear for his clients, Zein has built a firm that delivers on its credo to each of its clients. After working for a variety of firms in Los Angeles, including one of the largest and most prestigious in the city, Zein founded what is now Obagi Law Group, P.C. in 2012. In the years since, Zein has built a team of diverse, energetic and highly skilled attorneys who specialize in righting the wrongs of discrimination, unlawful retaliation, wrongful termination and other abuses in the workplace, as well as protecting clients’ interests in the world of business in California. With Zein leading the way, the attorneys at Obagi Law Group treat each client as if he or she were the firm’s only client, delivering time and again and attaining awards at times in the millions of dollars.

While Zein makes social justice and fighting for the little guy hallmarks of his practice, he also lives by the same values he has woven into the fabric of Obagi Law Group. For instance, being raised with six sisters and married to a successful physician, Zein understands that men and women are equal in every way. He continues to advance this belief not only in his practice, but through his work with the Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA). In July 2020 the organization appointed Zein to the President’s Advisory Committee on Women in the Legal Profession. Among Zein’s other public-service endeavors are a trio of trips to the Katrina-ravaged Gulf Region to supply critical pro bono legal aid as part of the inaugural and two subsequent Legal Aid Alternative Breaks Projects; volunteer work with the Los Angeles 5 (LA5) Chapter of Rotary Club International, and two runs as a candidate for U.S. Congress in California’s 33rd District.

A graduate of UC Berkeley (BA, political science) and the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law (JD), Zein enjoys admission to practice law throughout the State of California; the U.S. District Court for the Central, Southern, Eastern and Northern Districts of California; the Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeals; and the Supreme Court of the United States. Zein also serves as Co-Chair of Programs with the LACBA Small Firm Section, and in 2020 was appointed to another LACBA committee, the Judicial Appointments Committee, which responds to requests by the Governor to evaluate individuals under consideration for appointment to the Superior Court of California bench.

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Source: EIN Presswire