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Compliance Watch Bulletin May 2021 – Latest Updates on Labor Laws

by Justin Siu

May 6, 2021

We just sent out the third edition of the Compliance Watch Bulletin – Legion’s quarterly bulletin about key changes in compliance rules. It includes information and resource links to help you monitor new employment laws and make it easier for you to manage and maintain compliance. 

In this edition, we’re covering recent and planned updates in predictive scheduling, minimum wage, and sick leave and hazard pay laws.

Philadelphia and NYC Fair Workweek Updates

Philadelphia 
Starting June 1, 2021, the Philadelphia Office of Worker Protections will be enforcing predictability pay requirements under the Philadelphia Fair Workweek law. Predictability pay enforcement was on hold due to COVID-19 and associated impacts on business activity, all other provisions included in the ordinance have been enforced since April 1, 2020. 

New York City 
The changes to the New York City Fair Workweek Laws discussed in the last update will go into effect on July 4, 2021.

Legion’s AI-powered workforce management platform provides comprehensive coverage of predictive scheduling compliance per city and state-specific laws, such as for Philadelphia and New York City.

Minimum Wage Updates

Minimum wage adjustments typically take effect in January, March, July, and December. Here is the list of states and some major cities that have upcoming minimum wage increases: New York, California, District of Columbia, Minnesota, Florida.

Legion WFM has support for loading a minimum wage for both cities and states, and the wage can be used to ensure employers are staying compliant with the rules in their locations. Using the minimum wage as an input, Legion WFM ensures that employees only receive shift offers for locations where their pay rate is greater than the minimum wage. Additionally, when managers manually add shifts for employees at other locations, Legion WFM can automatically flag shifts when there may be a pay rate violation based on the minimum wage.

NY and CA Sick Leave and Hazard Pay Updates

In March 2021, New York and California passed new laws allowing employees to take paid leave for reasons related to COVID. 

New York
Effective March 12, 2021, New York employers must allow employees to take paid leave of up to four hours per vaccination appointment if time off is needed to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine. That means employees who receive a double-dose vaccine are eligible for up to 8 hours of COVID-19 vaccine pay. Additionally, this leave is paid at the employee’s regular pay rate and may not be reduced from an employee’s current Sick Leave (or any other time-off balance/accruals). 

California
Effective March 29, 2021, employers with 26 or more employees in California must provide employees with up to 80 hours of COVID-19 related paid sick leave through September 30, 2021 (with the requirement retroactive to January 1, 2021). Employees in California can take leave if they can’t work or telework.

Some counties and cities across California are implementing required Hazard Pay for frontline workers, such as grocery stores and retail pharmacies. As of March 2021, more than 20 cities or counties in California have passed an ordinance requiring that frontline workers get paid a hazard rate. According to the Department of Labor, “Hazard pay means additional pay for performing hazardous duty or work involving physical hardship.” 

The Legion Time and Attendance module provides self-service admin configurations for time-off rules, hazard pay rules, and other custom pay rules to meet city and state-specific sick leave and hazard pay requirements. Employees’ worked hours and time-off hours are recorded. The hours can be submitted to payroll as sick leave, hazard, or other custom pay, such as COVID vaccination or hazard differential earnings.

Download the Compliance Watch Bulletin and read all the details of this new legislation.