California Labor Rules to Ignore at Your Own Peril – 6th Rule: Family Leave

This is an ongoing series looking at the nine California Labor Rules to Ignore at Your Own Peril. Today we’ll discuss Family Leave.

In addition to the federal FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act), Californian employees are also protected by the CFRA, or California Family Rights Act, as well as pregnancy rights laws. All told, an employee may be entitled to as much as seven months of time off while their job is protected. People say that workers in Europe get a lot of time off, but two-thirds of a year is definitely a big deal.

Taken together these layers of rules are so complex that the only way to ensure compliance is with a calendar. The time periods overlap, the notice requirements are different, and if you don’t have a self-taught expert in family leave as part of your HR department, it’s best to reread all of the regulations every single time the issue crops up. (It’s actually a good idea no matter how many years you’ve been in human resources, because the laws frequently change, and each set of circumstances is unique.)

Particularly for a small company, it can be challenging to keep that position open while ensuring the duties are performed. There are cost associated with cross-training, and if existing staff is unable to juggle it all, a temp may be needed to fill in during the leave. It’s very important not to let that frustration turn into negative or disparaging consequences about or to the employee on leave; this can have legal consequences.

Utilizing an HR platform which integrates payroll takes much of that burden off your HR staff. The appropriate notifications can be automatically calculated and calendared for generation on the appropriate dates. Each set of legal requirements can be set as rules in the system, ensuring full compliance. Auditing the process is as easy as writing custom reports to track the milestones.

Negotiating these and other complicated legal requirements can be made easier. Contact Pacific Data Marketing to learn how for your company.

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