Here are some of the most significant employment law updates for 2024.
The minimum wage for all California employees has again increased. For all employers, the minimum wage has increased to $16.00, regardless of the number of employees. This also means the minimum annual salary for certain exempt employees has increased to $66,560.00. The annual salary for the Computer Professional Exemption and Licensed Physician and Surgeon Exemption has also increased to $115,763.35.
Minimum Wage for Healthcare Workers
Effective June 1, 2024, the minimum wage for “covered healthcare employees” will increase. The increase depends on the size and type of healthcare facility, among other factors. The minimum wage will increase annually until it reaches $25.00 per hour by 2026, 2028, or 2033, depending on the type of facility. Covered healthcare employees is broadly defined to include most persons employed by a healthcare facility, including janitors, food service workers, and gift shop workers.
Minimum Wage for Fast Food Workers
Effective April 1, 2024, the minimum wage for most fast food employees will increase to $20.00 per hour.
Paid Sick Leave – Healthy Workplace, Healthy Families Act of 2014
California increased the amount of paid sick leave an employee is entitled to take from three days/24 hours to five days/40 hours per year. California also increased the cap on accrued hours from 48 hours to 80 hours.
Mileage Reimbursement Rate
The IRS mileage reimbursement rate for use of employee vehicles has increased to 67 cents per mile.
Off Duty Marijuana Use
Effective January 1, 2024, employers with at least five employees may not take any adverse action against an employee or applicant for using marijuana off site and off duty. In most cases, an employer may not ask an applicant about their prior use of marijuana.
Leave for Reproductive Loss
Employers with at least five employees must now provide employees with up to five days of unpaid reproductive loss leave upon suffering a reproductive loss event, which includes failed adoptions, failed surrogacy, miscarriage, or stillbirth. Employers may not retaliate against employees for taking such leave.
Off Duty Sexual Harassment
In a case entitled Atalla v. Rite Aid, the employer was found not liable for the sexual harassment a supervisor engaged in with a subordinate. In that case, the supervisor sent sexually inappropriate texts and photos to an employee while they were both off duty. The two had also previously been friends when they worked together. Under the circumstances, Rite Aid could not be held responsible for the supervisor’s sexual harassment.
Sexually Graphic & Violently Misogynistic Music
>In a federal court case entitled Sharp v. S&S Activewear, the Ninth Circuit held an employer could be liable for creating a sexually hostile work environment because the managers and employees routinely played sexually graphic and violently misogynistic music in the company warehouse. The court also held that the harassment did not need to be targeted at a specific person, and allowed the case brought by a male and several female employees to proceed.
The United States Supreme Court held in Groff v. DeJoy, that an employer must accommodate an employee’s religion unless it imposes an undue hardship, meaning an employer must provide an accommodation unless it would result in substantial increased costs.
Contact the experienced employment attorneys at the Law Offices of Corren & Corren for any of your employment law needs.