New Employee-Friendly Bill Proposed in California

A new bill has been proposed in California and may give employers a new wage and hour worry if passed.  AB 2751 would amend section 1198 of the state Labor Code, effectively banning employers from contacting employees outside of work hours.  This includes phone calls, email, text messages, or any other communication from the employer made outside of the employee’s working hours. 

Right-to-disconnect laws were first enacted in France and, if the bill is passed, would be the fourteenth law of its kind. Working and nonworking hours would be established by written agreement between the employee and employer and would reflect the times that the employee would otherwise be punched in and performing work.  There would be two exceptions to the right to disconnect; 1) an emergency (“unforeseen situation that threatens an employee, customer, or the public; disrupts or shuts down operations; or causes physical or environmental damage”) or 2) changes to the schedule within 24 hours. The bill does not clarify whether or how it would apply to exempt employees if passed.

Continue to follow us through our newsletter and social media channels as we track the status of this bill. If passed, we would encourage our clients in California to open up a ticket in our Ask an Attorney client portal for assistance.

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