New Minimum Wage for All California Employers Coming Soon
January 1, 2023 marks the start of California’s new minimum wage rate, which will be beneficial for many employees. Minimum wage will increase to $15.50 per hour for all employers. Small businesses (those with 25 or fewer employees) will suffer the repercussions more since the minimum wage will jump from $14 per hour to $15.50.
California Labor Section 1182.12 states that when the rate of inflation exceeds 7%, the minimum wage for all employers must be set to the same amount. Therefore, this also increases the minimum salary for exempt employees in California. Starting on January 1, 2023 the new exempt salary threshold will be $64,480 per year for all employees, regardless of size.
Medical Documentation Requirements for Disability Leaves
Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as well as California’s related law, the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), you may require medical documentation to corroborate the need for a leave of absence.
When the disability or need for accomodation is not blatantly visible, the employer may ask the individual for “reasonable documentation” about their disability and limitations. Non-obvious disabilities may include common conditions, such as migraine, depression, and sleep disorders.
What does “reasonable documentation” mean?
Reasonable documentation means that the employer may ask for documentation that is necessary to establish and prove that a person has a disability which necessitates a reasonable accommodation. Therefore, an employee who fails to provide requested medical documentation with a disability that is not obvious will not be entitled to reasonable accommodation.
Is there a time limit to provide medical documentation?
The ADA nor the FEHA have a specific time limit for the employee to provide medical documentation to support a reasonable accommodation request. Many employers decide to apply the timelines from the family leave laws, which essentially require that an employer allows at least 15 days to return a certification, and then provide extra time if the employee is unable to obtain it for reasons beyond their control. For example, there may be delays in obtaining certification caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Therefore, employers should consider permitting a leave as an accommodation even before receiving medical documentation.
Sanjay Sabarwal focuses his practice in the areas of Employment Law, Family Law and Personal Injury Law and provides outstanding service and expertise for your legal right to win cases with personalized attention and insightful counsel. Mr. Sabarwal has been the Co-Owner and House Counsel for Ziba Beauty, member of the American Bar Association, Los Angeles Bar Association, South Asian Bar Association and Orange County Bar Association. He also serves on the Advisory Board for Youth Business Alliance, which connects entrepreneurs to speak at underserved schools in Los Angeles County. He is also a board member for the Artesia Chamber of Commerce. Contact Sanjay at firstname.lastname@example.org or (562) 250-4471.
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