In the last few days Governor Newsom has signed into law two new bills related to COVID-19 that will affect businesses across the state. These include:
AB685; A law that mandates imminent hazard notification to employees, and timely notification to local and state public health officials of COVID-19 cases at workplaces. It requires employers to notify all employees within one business day that they have been potentially exposed to COVID-19 if any person at the worksite happens to test positive, or has been ordered to isolate, or has passed away. The law strengthens Cal/OSHA enforcement authority and goes into effect on January 1, 2021.
SB1159; A law that expands access and eligibility for COVID-19 infected workers to Workers’ Compensation benefits by creating a rebuttable presumption when there is a workplace outbreak of COVID-19 over a 14-day timeframe. For companies with 5 to 100 employees, the law defines an outbreak as 4 or more infected workers who work at the same location within a two-week period. For companies with 100 or more employees, outbreaks are defined as at least 4% of workers working in the same location being infected in a two-week period. The law goes into effect immediately.