Course Details

PTO In California: Critical Strategies For Correctly Calculating And Managing Paid Leave Banks

About This Course:
PTO plans are often touted as a simpler alternative to traditional time off banks, but California presents unique challenges for employers.

Managing and tracking unexpected time off can be tricky, especially when dealing with partial-day absences for exempt employees. And you can forget about “use it or lose it” policies, which are illegal in the Golden State.

In order to avoid legal consequences, read: a costly class-action lawsuit, you will need to understand how PTO interacts with California’s paid sick leave law.

Join us when our presenter, an experienced California employment attorney, explains the unique legal challenges that accompany PTO administration here in California, and how you can ensure you stay on the right side of both the state labor code and the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.

Learning Objectives
  • What an effective, compliant PTO policy looks like in California, and how it differs from the traditional vacation day/sick day structure
  • How to handle partial-day deductions from the leave bank, and how to account for time off that’s not tracked in easily measurable days
  • The kinds of notice you need to give to exempt workers before requiring them to use accrued PTO during furloughs
  • Alternatives to “use it or lose it” policies
  • Do's and don’ts for administering PTO days that carry over from year to year
  • Tactics for combining PTO leave with protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act and the California Family Rights Act
  • The top things you need to know before changing PTO accrual rates
  • Smart strategies to use when employees cash out their unused time
  • Why misunderstanding the PTO rules can put employees’ exempt status in jeopardy, and how to avoid this potentially catastrophic mistake
  • When PTO time amounts to “wages” under California law
  • Best practices for structuring your PTO bank
  • How to use caps to your advantage
  • What a California appeals court recently ruled about forcing salaried exempt employees to use PTO for partial-day absences, and why an updated written policy is essential
  • And much more!
About Your Presenter

John Lai, Esq.
Fisher & Phillips LLP

John Lai of Fisher & Phillips’ Irvine office practices wage-and-hour litigation, workplace safety compliance and Cal-OSHA defense, FMLA and CFRA leave compliance, handbook policy counseling, and discrimination and harassment claims.
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