How California’s “Stay at Home” Order affects Babysitters and Nannies

On March 19th, Governor Newsom issued a “Stay at Home” Executive Order. This mandate states that all nannies and babysitters can only report to work if your household has an essential worker. Essential workers include those working in healthcare, pharmacy, grocery, bank, laundromat, law enforcement, fire department, utilities, etc.  Click here for a complete list of essential workers.

How the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) affect Babysitters and Nannies

On March 19th, the White House passed the FFCRA, which includes mandatory Paid Sick Leave. As of April 2nd, Employers must provide nannies or babysitters with paid sick leave.  The FFCRA provides the equivalent of 2 weeks of emergency paid sick leave benefits for any of the following COVID-19 related absences:

  1. Subject to a federal, state or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
  2. Advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to COVID-19 concerns;
  3. Experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and seeking medical diagnosis;
  4. Caring for an individual subject to a federal, state or local quarantine or isolation order or advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to COVID-19 concerns;
  5. Caring for the employee’s child if the child’s school or place of care is closed or the child’s care provider is unavailable due to public health emergency; or
  6. Experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Labor.

A nanny or babysitter using paid sick leave for purposes (1) – (3) must be paid their “regular rate of pay” (capped at $5,110 total). If the sick leave is used for reasons (4) – (6), they must be paid at 2/3 their “regular rate of pay” (capped at $2,000 total).


During these uncertain times, your household may decide to reduce nanny or babysitter hours, furlough, or lay them off. Whatever route you decide to take, make sure to follow all labor laws. For example, if you decide to lay off your nanny or babysitter, make sure to send them your final payment (including payment of accrued but unused vacation time).

The laws surrounding COVID-19 is very fluid.  Please keep updated by visiting the State of California’s COVID-19 website.

For more information on how you should navigate paid sick and emergency leave during this time, please contact Hackler Flynn & Associates, APC.

DISCLAIMER: Content within this post should not be considered legal advice and is for informational purposes only. Communications made through this post do not create an attorney-client relationship. Hackler Flynn & Associates is not responsible for any content that you may access from third-party resources that may be accessed through or linked to this post. Hackler Flynn & Associates is only licensed to practice in California.

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