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Paid Family and Medical Leave Increase in California Includes an Additional Non-family Member

October 10, 2022 | Employment Law

Effective in 2025, California will pay up to 90% in wage replacement for new parents and those who need to take time off for their own illness or caring for another’s. Senate Bill 951 will also maintain the wage replacement rate between 60% and 70% until 2025. The rate was scheduled to return to 55% next year.


In 2002, California became the first state in the nation to offer comprehensive paid family leave. The Kuehl bill provided workers who pay into the state disability insurance system eligibility for six weeks paid leave to bond with a child, care for a sick relative or recuperate from an illness or injury. The bill improved upon the disability insurance program created in 1946 to provide partial wage replacement for employees unable to work due to pregnancy or non-work related illness or injury. In 2020, the length of time an employee could qualify for was raised to eight weeks from six.


The current program is funded entirely by employee payroll deduction. Senate Bill 951 removes the payroll deduction cap so higher earners will pay more into the system offsetting most of the $3 billion to $4 billion anticipated benefit increase.


Along with signing this bill into law, Gov. Newsom signed AB 1041 which expands the list of people for whom an employee may use paid leave to care for. Employees may now add one additional person they consider to be family.


If you have a dispute regarding your eligibility for state disability insurance paid leave, contact our experienced attorneys to recover the supplemental income you deserve.