2023 Employment Law Changes

These are brief summaries of the new 2023 Employment Law Changes. For a more comprehensive overview, please access the full version by visiting the Guardian HR Forms Library “Employment Law Overview by State” folder and access the document titled 2023 Updates By State – GHR.

You will also be able to find resources, forms, policies and more to many of these laws in the GHR Forms Library. Please let your Guardian HR Manager know if you have any questions.


Workplace Violence

Weapons in the Workplace

An employer may restrict or prohibit its employees from carrying firearms while on Company property or while engaged in Company duties, despite the new law which permits the carry of concealed firearms without a permit. The law does not allow employees to keep guns in an employer-owned car.


Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees

Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum weekly salary for overtime-exempt employees will be $868.00.


Payroll Update

Effective January 1, 2023, all Arizona employees must complete and submit to their employer a new 2023 Arizona Employee’s Withholding Election, Form A-4. The form has been revised due to a reduction in the state income tax rates, which are reflected on the form.


CFRA Expansion and California Paid Sick Leave (AB 1041)

Effective January 2, 2023, California now permits the use of CFRA leave and Paid Sick Leave to cover a “designated person” as an added definition of a “family member”. A change to your employee handbook policies will be required!

Bereavement Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, California requires all employers to grant an eligible employee’s request to take up to five (5) days of unpaid bereavement leave upon the death of a family member. The law defines “family member” as a “spouse or a child, parent, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, domestic partner, or parent-in-law.”

If the employer has an existing bereavement policy that provides for fewer than five days total, the employer must provide additional unpaid days to bring the number of days up to five. Although these additional days do not have to be paid, the employer must permit the employee to “use vacation, personal leave, accrued and available sick leave, or compensatory time off that is otherwise available to the employee.”

FEHA Expansion – Reproductive Health Decision-Making

Effective January 1, 2023, California makes it an unlawful employment practice to discriminate against an applicant or an employee based on reproductive health decision-making. The statute also “make[s] it unlawful for an employer to require, as a condition of employment, continued employment, or a benefit of employment,” applicants or employees to disclose information relating to reproductive health decision-making.

“Reproductive health decision-making” includes, but is not limited to, “a decision to use or access a particular drug, device, product, or medical service for reproductive health.” Reproductive decision-making also may be construed to fall under the definition of “sex” in the Fair Employment and Housing Authority.

Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees

Computer Professionals and Physicians and Surgeons

Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum annual salary for overtime-exempt employees will be $112,065.20.

The rate of hourly compensated computer professionals will be $53.80.

The minimum hourly rate of pay for physicians and surgeons paid an hourly rate increases from $91.07 to $97.99.

Other Exempt Professionals

Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum weekly salary for overtime-exempt employees will be $1,200.00 for employers of any size.

Pay Transparency

Pay Data Reporting Requirements

Effective January 1, 2023, California’s pay data reporting requirements are amended to:

  • Apply to all private employers in the state with 100 or more employees;
  • Require private employers that had 100 or more employees hired through labor contractors in the prior calendar year to submit a separate report covering those employees;
  • Remove the option for an employer to substitute an EEO-1 report for the pay data report;
  • Change the submission deadline to the second Wednesday of May each year; and
  • Require covered employers to calculate a mean and median hourly rate for each combination of race, ethnicity and sex within each job category.

The law contains a private right of action and protections against retaliation. Lawsuits must be brought within two years from the day the employer knew or should have known of an employer’s alleged violation.

Pay Ranges in Job Posting

Effective January 1, 2023, California employers with 15 or more employees must include a position’s pay scale in any job posting, including a job posting announced, posted or published by a third party.

In addition, all employers are required to provide the pay scale for:

  • A position to which an applicant has applied upon the applicant’s reasonable request; and
  • An employee’s current position upon the employee’s request.

pay scale means the salary or hourly range the employer reasonably expects to pay for a position.

Human Trafficking

Effective January 1, 2023, California amends its human trafficking notice rules to require that, in addition to other previously listed businesses, barbering and cosmetology businesses post a notice that contains information relating to slavery and human trafficking.


Motor Vehicle Tracking

Effective January 1, 2023, California’s motor vehicle laws are amended to permit the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to authorize alternatives to stickers, tabs, license plates and registration cards as vehicle tracking devices.

However, the amended law prohibits an employer from using an alternative device to monitor employees, except during work hours and only if strictly necessary for the performance of the employees’ duties.  Employees are permitted to disable or remove the alternative device’s monitoring capabilities, including vehicle location technology, outside of work hours.

California Privacy Rights Act

The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) significantly amends and expands the privacy obligations under the California Consumer Privacy Act.

Specifically, the CPRA amends certain definitions including those for business and personal information. It also addresses various other topics, including but not limited to:

  • Notices and disclosures to consumers;
  • Consumer rights; and
  • Data security.

The CPRA becomes operative on January 1, 2023, except for the right of access to personal information, which, due to a 12-month lookback period, applies to personal information collected by a business on or after January 1, 2022. The CPRA will likely not be enforced until July 1, 2023.

Workers’ Compensation

COVID-19 WC Provision

California extends its rebuttable presumption that an employee’s illness resulting from COVID-19 was sustained in the course of employment for purposes of workers’ compensation benefits until January 1, 2024.

Workplace Safety

Emergency Working Conditions

Effective January 1, 2023, California prohibits an employer from “taking or threatening adverse action against any employee for refusing to report to, or leaving, a workplace or worksite within the affected area because the employee has a reasonable belief that the workplace or worksite is unsafe” in the event of an emergency condition.

An “emergency condition” is defined as the “existence of either … conditions of disaster or extreme peril to the safety of persons or property at the workplace or worksite caused by natural forces or a criminal act,” or “[a]n order to evacuate a workplace, a worksite, a worker’s home, or the school of a worker’s child due to natural disaster or a criminal act.” “Emergency condition” specifically excludes a health pandemic.

The employee must have a “reasonable belief” that the workplace is not safe. A reasonable belief means that “a reasonable person, under the circumstances known to the employee at the time, would conclude there is a real danger of death or serious injury if that person enters or remains on the premises.”

Additionally, Labor Code section 1193 prohibits employers from preventing employees “from accessing their mobile device or other communications device for seeking emergency assistance, assessing the safety of the situation, or communicating with a person to verify their safety.”

Employers may require that, “when feasible, an employee shall notify the employer of the emergency condition requiring the employee to leave or refuse to report to the workplace or worksite prior to leaving or refusing to report.” These provisions are “not intended to apply when emergency conditions that pose an imminent and ongoing risk of harm to the workplace, the worksite, the worker, or the worker’s home have ceased.”

Employee Notification for Citations

Effective January 1, 2023, employers must post an employee notification containing specified information when the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) issues citations, orders or special orders to enforce occupational safety and health standards. The notice must be made in certain specified languages in addition to English.


Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees

Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum weekly salary for overtime-exempt employees will be $961.54.

Final Wages

Effective January 1, 2023, Colorado has amended its final wages regulations. If a terminated employee was entrusted during employment with the collection, disbursement or handling of money or property and fails to properly pay or return it to the employer upon termination of employment as provided by the terms of an agreement between the employer and employee and subject to certain procedures, the employer must provide notice to the employee within 10 days after the termination before making a pay deduction for the amount of money or the value of the property not paid or returned.

Paid Family and Medical Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, under the Colorado Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) program, covered employers are required to remit a premium contribution of 0.9% (split at 0.45% each between employers and employees) of each covered employee’s wages up to the Social Security taxable wage base in effect for the year to fund PFML benefits. Employers may pay part of the employee share if they choose. The rate will remain the same through December 31, 2024, and will be adjusted annually after that.

Employers that have 10 or more employees may withhold up to 50% of the full 0.9% contribution (i.e., a maximum of 0.45%) from each covered employees’ wages and must pay the remainder of the total required contribution.

An employer with fewer than 10 employees is exempt from paying the employer share of the contribution and is responsible for remitting only the 0.45% employee share. These small employers may choose to withhold all of the employee’s share from each covered employee’s wages, or they may choose to withhold only a portion of it and make up the difference themselves.

Employers that already provide an approved private PFML program may opt out of the statewide program. Self-employed individuals are not required to participate in the PFML program but may opt in; those that do opt in only have to pay the employee share of the premium contribution.

Benefits will be available to covered employees beginning January 1, 2024.


Background Checks

Effective January 1, 2023, Connecticut’s Clean Slate Law, which requires certain criminal history information to be erased, prohibits employers from requiring current or prospective employees to disclose the existence of any erased criminal history record information. The law also prohibits an employer from denying employment to a prospective employee or terminating or otherwise discriminating against an employee solely because of the person’s erased criminal history record information. In addition, any employment application that contains a question about the applicant’s criminal history must contain a notice explaining that the applicant is not required to disclose erased criminal history information.

District of Columbia

Tip Credits

The minimum direct cash wage for tipped employees in the District of Columbia increases from $5.35 to $6.00. As a result, the maximum tip credit decreases from $10.75 to $10.10.



Effecting the Company’s EEO, Harassment and Dress Code/Appearances policies, starting January 1, 2023, Illinois will include hair texture and protective hair styles in the definition of traits associated with race under the Illinois Human Rights Act.

Meal and Rest Breaks

Effective January 1, 2023, the Illinois One Day Rest in Seven Act is amended to:

  • Require employers to provide employees who work in excess of 7 ½ continuous hours an additional 20-minute meal break for every additional 4 ½ continuous hours worked;
  • Provide that employees must be allowed at least 24 consecutive hours of rest in every consecutive seven-day periodrather than every calendar week;
  • Require employers to post a notice summarizing the requirements of the Act and information about how to the file a complaint;
  • Increase the maximum penalties for employers that violate the act;
  • Specify that a meal break does not include reasonable time spent using the restroom facilities; and
  • Exempt from the day of rest requirements employees for whom work hours, days of work and rest periods are established through the collective bargaining process.

Bereavement Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, the Child Bereavement Leave Act is renamed the Family Bereavement Leave Act and is broadened to cover the following individuals:

  • An employee’s child, stepchild, spouse, domestic partner, sibling, parent, stepparent, parent-in-law, grandchild, or grandparent.
  • Absences from work due to a miscarriage, an unsuccessful round of intrauterine insemination or of an assisted reproductive technology procedure, a failed adoption match or an adoption that is not finalized because it is contested by another party, a failed surrogacy agreement, a diagnosis that negatively impacts pregnancy or fertility, or a stillbirth.

Organ and Bone Marrow Donor Leave

For income tax reporting periods beginning on or after January 1, 2023, an employer that allows all of its employees to take at least 30 days of paid leave to serve as an organ or bone marrow donor may take an income tax credit for each employee who takes leave. The credit must be taken within one year after the date the leave begins. Employers are not required to provide leave for the purpose of organ or bone marrow donation, and employers are not prohibited from providing an unpaid leave of absence for organ or bone marrow donation. However, the employer must follow the law’s specifications to be eligible for the credit.


Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees

Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum weekly salary for overtime-exempt employees will be $796.17.

Final Pay

Maine’s final pay law is amended to require employers with 11 or more employees to pay terminated employees (including those terminated due to the sale of the employer’s business) all unused, paid vacation accrued pursuant to the employer’s vacation policy on and after January 1, 2023.


Paid Family and Medical Leave

Maryland’s Time to Care Act of 2022 (the Act) provides employees with paid family and medical leave (PFML) benefits that are funded by employer and employee contributions. The Act includes anti-retaliation and notice provisions that take effect January 1, 2023. Covered employers, employees and participating self-employed individuals in Maryland must make contributions beginning October 1, 2023, and employees may access PFML benefits beginning January 1, 2025.


Overtime Pay

Effective January 1, 2023, Massachusetts will follow federal guidelines for overtime laws. Any hours worked over 40 in a workweek will be paid at the rate of 1.5 times their regular rate of pay, regardless of the day worked in the week.

Paid Family and Medical Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, the state Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) contribution rates decrease.  


Paid Adoption Leave Tax

For tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2023, an employer that voluntarily provides paid adoption leave may claim an income tax credit of up to $4,000 per qualified employee for a single adoption leave period.

New York

Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees

Effective December 31, 2022, the minimum weekly salary for executive and administrative employees exempt from New York’s minimum wage and overtime requirements is proposed to increase from $990.00 to $1,064.25 for employers outside of New York City, Nassau County, Suffolk County and Westchester County. The minimum salary remains $1,125.00 per week for employers in New York City, Nassau County, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

Paid Family Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, a covered family member under New York’s paid family leave law includes an employee’s biological, adopted, half or stepsibling. Additionally, effective January 1, 2023, the state employee paid family leave contribution rate decreases.


Oregon Workplace Fairness Act

Effective January 1, 2023, the Oregon Workplace Fairness Act (the Act), which restricts an employer from entering into a nondisclosure agreement that prevents an employee from disclosing or discussing discriminatory or harassing conduct, is amended.

Overtime Pay

Effective January 1, 2023, nonexempt agricultural workers must be paid one and one-half times their regular rate of pay for each overtime hour or portion of an hour that they work in excess of 55 hours in one workweek. 

Paid Family and Medical Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, the definition of benefit year under the state paid family and medical leave (PFML) law is amended to mean a period of 52 consecutive weeks that starts on the Sunday immediately before the date on which family, medical or safe leave begins. Previously, it was defined as the 12-month period determined by the Director of the Employment Department. PFML is funded by payroll contributions beginning January 1, 2023, with PFML benefits accessible beginning September 3, 2023.

Paid Sick Leave

Effective January 1, 2023, the Oregon Sick Time Law (OSTL) is amended to provide that:

  • An employer signatory to a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) to which the employer has agreed to contribute to a multiemployer-employee trust or benefit plan will be considered to have met the requirements of the OSTL under certain conditions, such as having a sick time policy that is equal to or greater than the OSTL’s minimum requirements.
  • An employee is eligible to use sick time under the policy beginning on the 91st calendar day of employment with an employer that is a signatory to the multiemployer CBA.
  • An employee may combine employment service attributable to each employer signatory for whom the employee worked to meet eligibility requirements.


Employee Benefits – Philadelphia Commuter Benefits

The Philadelphia Employee Commuter Transit Benefit Programs Ordinance (the Ordinance) takes effect December 31, 2022. The Ordinance requires covered employers to offer certain types of commuter transit benefits to covered employees.

Rhode Island

Equal Pay

Effective January 1, 2023, Rhode Island’s pay equity law takes effect. The law broadens pay discrimination protections beyond sex to include:

  • Race,
  • Color,
  • Religion,
  • Sexual orientation,
  • Gender identity or expression,
  • Disability,
  • Age, and
  • National origin.

An employer may not pay its employees less than the rate paid to employees of another protected class for comparable work unless it can justify the wage differential using specified factors. The law also contains wage disclosure protections and anti-retaliation provisions, bans salary history inquiries and requires employers to provide applicants and employees with pay ranges for the positions they apply for or hold.



Effective January 1, 2023, the Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act (VCDPA) provides for consumer rights regarding how companies use personal data. Employers doing business in Virginia or marketing to Virginians may need to modify their practices in order to comply with the law.


Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees

Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum salary for most overtime-exempt employees in Washington increases from $1,014.30 per week to:

  • $1,259.20 per week for large employers (with 51 or more employees); and
  • $1,101.80 per week for small employers (with 50 or fewer employees).

Pay Transparency

Equal Pay

Effective January 1, 2023, employers in Washington with 15 or more employees must include the wage scale or salary range in each posting for a job opening, along with a general description of all the benefits and other compensation associated with the position. The law covers both electronic and printed postings and applies to both an employer’s direct recruiting efforts and recruiting through third parties.

Overtime Pay

Effective January 1, 2023, agricultural employees must be paid one and one-half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 48 in any one workweek.

Unclaimed Wages

Effective January 1, 2023, pay cards are presumed abandoned if unclaimed one year after they become payable (as are wages paid by other methods, including cash, checks, virtual currency, interest or dividends, direct deposits, and drafts).

For clients with questions regarding this topic, please contact your Guardian HR dedicated Manager.

If you wish to become a client of Guardian HR and get access to all our resources, including your own dedicated consultant and our team of employment attorneys, please contact us at sales@guardian-hr.com or call us at 888-373-4724.