Effective January 1, 2015, AB 1792 will allow the State to determine which California employers have the greatest number of workers who are supported by taxpayer-funded assistance programs (e.g., food stamps, Medi-Cal, etc.) due to low wages, low hours and limited or no health coverage. The law requires the Employment Development Department to work with other State agencies to publish a list of the top 500 California employers with the largest number of employees enrolled in public assistance programs.

AB 1792 also creates Government Code section 13084, prohibiting employers from:

  1. discharging, discriminating or retaliating against an employee who enrolls in a public assistance program;
  2. refusing to hire a person because he or she is enrolled in a public assistance program; and/or
  3. disclosing to any person or entity that an employee receives or is applying for public benefits, unless otherwise permitted by law.

Under the sunset clause in AB 1792, the law will expire on January 1, 2020, unless it is extended or made permanent.

PLANNING TIP:

Companies with California workers should be prepared to receive requests for and disclose data to State agencies regarding employee wages and benefits.