California’s Response to COVID-19
California Law Alerts - March 2020


In March 2020, California Governor Gavin Newsom made the following announcements and issued the following orders regarding the state’s response to COVID-19:

  • March 19, 2020: California governor issues statewide order for people to stay at home amid virus outbreak. The order is in place until further notice.
  • March 15, 2020 (California news source): All bars, pubs, wineries, and nightclubs in the state to close with new restrictions on restaurants. Seniors and people with chronic health conditions urged to isolate themselves at home in a bid to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Restaurants may remain open but can serve only half as many as their maximum occupancies to create space between diners.
  • March 13, 2020: Ensuring state funding for schools even in event of physical closure and urging employers to take area school closures into account and provide flexibility during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • March 12, 2020: Gatherings of more than 250 people canceled statewide and removes the waiting period for unemployment and disability insurance for Californians who lose work as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • March 4, 2020: State of emergency declared.

The California Employment Development Department also released FAQ’s addressing disability or paid family leave benefits, unemployment insurance benefits, and employer information.

Read more in the Governor’s newsroom and on the California Department of Public Health website, where guidance documents may also be reviewed.

Cal/OSHA Coronavirus Notice and Guidance

On March 6, 2020, the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration released the following guidance to help employers meet their legal duty to protect workers exposed to airborne infectious diseases, like the coronavirus:

Read more on the Cal/OSHA website

Coronavirus Information

In March 2020, the following agencies released information regarding coronavirus (COVID-19):

  • The California Labor Commissioner’s Office released FAQs addressing employee leave options, compensation, and salary.
  • The California Employment Development Department released:
    • Information addressing issues for workers (sick, quarantined, caregiving, and reduced work hours) and employers (workplace health and safety, reduced work hours, closure or layoffs, and tax assistance); and
    • FAQs addressing disability, paid family leave, and unemployment benefits.

The state also encourages consulting the following resources for additional information about the illness:

Click HERE  to download the document.