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2022 Law Changes Update

Written by Lynne Hook of Employer Lawyer PC


The California Legislature has passed, and our Governor has signed a number employment laws that are effective January 1.  Here is a summary of what you need to know: 

  •  SB331 – Non-Disclosure Agreements 

 Starting January 1, 2022, California employers may not require employees to sign non-disclosure provisions in any agreement regarding employee termination related to any information about claims of harassment and discrimination. 

Any non-disclosure agreement must advise the employee that he/she/they have the right to speak with an attorney and allow five (5) business days to do so.  Sample language is included in the statute that should be part of any non-disparagement clause going forward.  Please consult legal counsel before you use these agreements. 

  •  California Family Rights Act 

 All employers with five or more employees must offer CFRA benefits to their employees at present, including 12 weeks of medical leave and baby bonding time.  Starting in 2022, the definition of family member includes parents-in-law. 

  •  Electronic Posting of Notices 

 When a law requires a physical posting, an employer may also provide the notice electronically for employees who work remote. 

  •  Employee Record Retention 

 You already know that employees have three years to file a charge of discrimination in California.  Now employers are required to preserve all employment records for four years for all applicants and employees. 

  •  Emotional Support Animals 

 Have you been receiving requests for emotional support animals from your employees?  California law has set up rules on how healthcare providers can issue these emotional support animal certifications.  The provider must have a valid, active license, have a client relationship with the employee for at least 30 days, complete a clinical evaluation and advise the client that knowingly and fraudulently representing themselves as the owner or trainer of a guide, signal or service dog is a misdemeanor. 

  •  Minimum salary for exempt employees increases 

 California exempt employee minimum salary is rising over $60,000 for the first time this January so as you assess 2022 wages, keep these minimums in mind.  For employers with 26 or more employees, $62,400 is the minimum annual salary that you must pay an exempt employee starting January 1, 2022. 

$58,240 is the minimum exempt annual salary if you are an employer with 25 or fewer employees as of January 1. 

California employers must pay their computer professional employees a salary of at least $104,149.81 annually (or an hourly wage of $50.00 every hour worked) to remain exempt from paying such employees overtime compensation. 

Remember, if an employee is not earning this minimum, the employee is non-exempt, and the employee is eligible for overtime and must clock hours. 

Please contact me if you have any questions about any of these changes. 

Written by Lynne Hook of Employer Lawyer PC

Lynne has been advising and defending employers in employment law matters for over 25 years. She counsels human resources and operations professionals on the legal aspects of employment policies and conducts training and workplace investigations. She has her own practice in Manhattan Beach called Employer Lawyer PC. Lynne received her B.A. Cum Laude in Philosophy and Political Science at USC then went on to complete her JD of Law at Notre Dame Law School. In her spare time, Lynne volunteers extensively for various non-profits in Los Angeles.



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