2024 California Employment Law Updates

Navigating the Awesome New Landscape: 2024 California Employment Law Updates

Here are some 2024 California Employment Law Updates


As we usher in the new year, California employers and employees alike must familiarize themselves with the latest changes in employment laws to ensure compliance and foster a fair and productive work environment. In 2024, several key updates have been implemented, impacting various aspects of employment in the Golden State. Let’s delve into the details with citations to the pertinent rules.

2024 California Employment Law Updates

1. Minimum Wage Adjustments:

– California’s minimum wage has seen an increase to $16 per hour for all employees. That means to qualify under a salary exemption, the minimum salary must be $66,560.

2. Fast Food Worker Increase

In a significant stride toward fair compensation, 2024 brings a noteworthy change for fast food workers in California. The law has elevated the minimum wage for fast-food workers to $20 per hour. This substantial increase underscores a commitment to addressing economic inequalities and ensuring that those in the fast food industry receive just compensation for their essential contributions.

3. Marijuana Use Protection:

A notable development in 2024 is the strengthened protection for employees engaging in lawful off-duty use of marijuana. Assembly Bill 1246 reinforces the rights of employees to partake in legal cannabis activities during non-working hours without fear of discrimination or retaliation. Employers are prohibited from taking adverse action against employees solely based on the lawful use of marijuana outside the workplace. (California Labor Code Section 96)

– However, it’s crucial to note that these protections do not extend to on-duty impairment. Employers maintain the right to address marijuana use that affects an employee’s job performance or poses a safety risk. Clear communication of workplace policies regarding marijuana use and impairment is essential to ensure a harmonious work environment. Employers are encouraged to revisit and update their drug policies in light of these changes to align with evolving attitudes towards marijuana use in California.

– As with any legal matter, it’s advisable for both employers and employees to seek guidance from legal professionals to navigate the nuances of marijuana use protection laws in the workplace effectively. Understanding the rights and responsibilities outlined in the updated statutes will contribute to a more inclusive and informed work environment for all parties involved.

4. Expanded Sick Leave Entitlement:

Effective in 2024, California has implemented significant expansions to its sick leave laws, offering employees a more robust framework for managing health-related absences. The previous standard of three days or 24 hours of paid sick leave has been expanded to a more comprehensive five days or 40 hours for full-time employees. This enhancement recognizes the diverse needs of employees and aims to provide greater flexibility for managing health-related issues without compromising financial stability. Part-time employees are entitled to a proportional increase based on their regular work schedule.


Staying informed about these 2024 California employment law updates is crucial for both employers and employees. The cited rules provide the legal framework for these changes, and it’s essential to consult legal counsel for a comprehensive understanding of how these updates may specifically impact your organization or employment situation. Compliance with these regulations not only fosters a positive work environment but also helps mitigate legal risks associated with non-compliance. As we move forward, a commitment to understanding and adapting to these changes will contribute to a more equitable and secure workplace for all.

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