New San Francisco Ordinance Provides Fully Paid Parenting Leave

April 8, 2016Alerts Labor & Employment Alert

On April 5, 2016, San Francisco adopted a Paid Parental Leave Ordinance. California already offers Paid Family Leave that provides up to six weeks of wage replacement benefits to workers who take time off to care for a seriously ill family member; or to bond with a newborn or a child recently placed through adoption or foster care. The existing state benefit, paid for with deductions from employees’ wages, covers approximately 55% of the employee’s wages, up to maximum benefit amount of $1,129 per week.

Under the new San Francisco ordinance, businesses with 20 or more employees (including part-time and temporary workers) will be required to pay the remaining 45% for employees taking the leave to bond with a newborn or recently placed child. The law takes effect January 1, 2017 for employers with 50 or more employees and on July 1, 2017 for those with 20 or more employees.

To be eligible, employees must have worked with the employer for at least 90 days before the leave starts, must work at least 8 hours per week in San Francisco, and must spend 40% or more of their work time for the employer with San Francisco. The employee may take the time off anytime within the first year after the child is born or is placed through foster care or adoption.

Employers seeking more information on this new ordinance are encouraged to contact any of the labor and employment attorneys in our San Francisco office and to monitor further developments on our California Employment Law Blog.