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Step-by-Step Guide to Taking Paid Sick Leave in California under the Labor Code

July 26, 2023

If you need to take time off from work due to an illness or injury in California, you may be
entitled to paid sick leave under the state’s labor laws. The California Labor Code requires
employers to provide certain employees with paid sick leave, which can be used for a variety of
purposes, including personal illness, caring for a sick family member, and seeking medical
treatment. In this blog post, we’ll outline the step-by-step process for taking paid sick leave in
California under the labor code.

Step 1: Determine if you are entitled to paid sick leave.

The first step in taking paid sick leave is to determine if you are entitled to it under the
California Labor Code. To be entitled to paid sick leave, you must be an employee who has
worked at least 30 days for your employer within a year of starting work. Part-time, temporary,
and seasonal employees are also entitled to paid sick leave if they meet this requirement.

Step 2: Review your employer’s sick leave policies.

Once you have determined that you are entitled to paid sick leave, the next step is to review
your employer’s policies on sick leave. Your employer should have written policies outlining
how much sick leave you are entitled to, how you can request sick leave, and any other relevant
information. It’s important to familiarize yourself with these policies so you know what to
expect when you request sick leave.

Step 3: Request sick leave from your employer.

If you need to take paid sick leave, the next step is to request the leave from your employer.
You can do this either orally or in writing, but it’s usually best to put your request in writing. In
your request, be sure to specify the dates you need to take off, the reason for the leave, and
any other relevant information. You should also provide any medical documentation supporting
your request, if applicable.

Step 4: Consider your employer’s response.

After you have made your request for sick leave, your employer should respond within a
reasonable time. Your employer may approve your request, deny your request, or ask for
additional information. If your employer denies your request, they must provide you with a
written explanation of their decision and the legal basis for it. If your employer asks for
additional information, you should provide the requested information as soon as possible.

Step 5: Seek legal advice.

If your employer denies your request for sick leave or you have any other questions or concerns
about the process, it’s important to seek legal advice. An experienced employment attorney
can review the facts of your case and advise you on your rights and options under the California
Labor Code. They can also help you gather any additional evidence and represent you in legal

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