Employees? Pfft! What are they good for? Oh, right. California has enacted a new sweeping privacy law. Unfortunately, the legislature was forced to rush the concept into law due to an election deadline, so the law is full of ambiguities, conflicts, and flat out errors. For example, how does the California Consumer Privacy Act apply to employees?
CCPA and Employees
How do you address this scenario as a business owner? The unfortunate reality is you’ll need to evaluate your workforce to determine which employees are natural residents of California. Once you’ve created that category, the general rules of the California Consumer Privacy Act will apply to the collection, storage, and use of that data. Sound like a bit of a nightmare? It is. I’m expecting the California Legislature to amend the law to provide clarity on company obligations when addressing employee personal information. I’ll post a video when California enacts an amendment.
*** CCPA Update ***
Assembly Member Chau introduced Assembly Bill 25 to amend the CCPA to clarify the application of the law to employees. The proposed language states:
“This bill would also exempt exempt, until January 1, 2021, from all provisions of the act, except the aforementioned private civil action provision, provision and the obligation to inform the consumer as to the categories of personal information to be collected as described above, information collected from a natural person by a business in the course of the natural person acting as a job applicant to, an employee of, owner of, director of, officer of, medical staff member of, or contractor of that business, as specified.”
The California Assembly passed the bill in a unanimous vote. The Senate is now considering AB 25. Should the bill become law, then businesses would gain relief from the CCPA as applied to employees.
Does the California Consumer Privacy Act apply to employees? Yes. But perhaps not for much longer.
Richard A. Chapo, Esq.
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