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Advancing the rights of working families.

California’s Statewide Paid Sick Time Law

Overview of California’s Paid Sick Time Campaign

On August 29, 2014, California voted to pass a statewide paid sick time law, becoming the second state in the country—along with Connecticutto guarantee paid sick time. Governor Jerry Brown signed the bill into law on September 10, 2014. At the signing ceremony, Governor Brown said: “Tonight, the Legislature took historic action to help hardworking Californians. This bill guarantees that millions of workers – from Eureka to San Diego – won’t lose their jobs or pay just because they get sick.”

Covered workers began to accrue paid sick time beginning on April 1, 2015.

According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, nearly 7 million workers in California lack even a single paid sick day to care for personal or family needs. To learn more about this campaign, and the incredible momentum around the issue of paid sick time, see our blog post on the California victory.

About California's Paid Sick Time Law

Under California’s paid sick time law, both private-sector and public workers will be entitled to accrue and use up to 24 hours of paid sick time a year. For more detailed information on coverage exemptions, accrual of paid sick time, and enforcement of the California law, see our California-specific chart of paid sick time laws (comparing the statewide law and local laws).

Under the law, workers can use paid sick time to recover from their own illness or to care for sick family members. The law covers a broad range of family members: children; parents; grandchildren; grandparents; spouses; registered domestic partners; and siblings.

The law also allows workers to use their paid sick time if the worker is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.

For More Information

A Better Balance’s national chart of paid sick time laws
A Better Balance's California chart of paid sick time laws 
IWPR’s analysis of access to paid sick time in California
The text of California’s ordinance

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