What to Expect From 2018 California Business Laws

As recently announced by the California Chamber of Commerce, several new laws will go into effect in 2018, altering hiring limitations, parental leave, and other business concerns. Here's the breakdown of what the laws are and how they will impact the workplace:

Parental Time Off

Under the Senate Bill 63 or New Parent Leave Act, small businesses with at least 20 workers must give as much as twelve weeks of job-secure, unpaid time off to new parents. Employees have to use this time off in the same year as their childbirth, adoption, or foster care arrangement.

Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson drafted the bill, which will primarily affect owners of 20-49 employee businesses who currently don't have to give parental leave as per the California Family Rights Act. The time intends to provide new parents with better bonding with their babies and does not apply to other family emergencies.

Criminal Background

Another measure, the Assembly Bill 1008, will prevent business owners with more than five employees from including a spot for criminal history on their job forms. Additionally, it will ban them from taking any criminal activity into account before making a tentative job offer. The bill is meant to protect employment seekers and allow them to dispute an employer's rescinded offer based on criminal history.

Of course, for jobs that necessitate background checks, this law will not come into play. Both the California Labor Federation and Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law believe in the new bill.

Past Income

The final major change is the Assembly Bill 168, which prohibits business owners from requesting applicants' previous income and other financial assistance. Under this law, employers cannot use this information to help them to decide salary or hiring. They almost must show job seekers a pay scale if requested.

This new bill should help to eliminate the pay difference between women and men performing the same job. Employers may not ask for salary history, but can take it into account if the job seeker offers it freely.

Companies sometimes take applicants out of the running because they cannot match their previous salaries. The AB 168 will also help ensure that these higher-paid workers get a chance to interview.


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