New California Workplace Violence Prevention Plan (WVPP) requirements go into effect on July 1st, 2024. Given the newness of the law, it can be hard for California employers and HR teams to to tell with clarity exactly how they will be enforced.

To help you get ready, check out our recent webinar and reusable WVPP training video for info on how to craft your plan and train your employees.

If you have additional questions, our in-house employment law team answered some FAQs about unique circumstances or edge cases related to creating, training on, and complying with WVPP laws:

General Questions

Do we need to make a plan if we only have remote employees?

If your remote employees work from a place of their choosing which is not under your control as an employer, you do not have to have a plan over that work area.

Do we need to make a plan if we have hybrid employees?

Yes. Unless one of the exceptions in LC 6401.9 (b)(2)(A) through (F) applies to your situation, you are subject to these workplace violence prevention requirements.
How does the “10 or fewer employees at a worksite” exception apply?

Individual places of employment do not need to follow these new workplace violence requirements if all of the following are true:

  • The workplace does not have 10 or more employees there “at any given time;”
  • The workplace is not accessible to the public; and
  • The workplace complies with the IIPP requirements in Section 3203 of Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations
Do all my employees need to be involved in creating the plan?

The law only requires employers “to obtain the active involvement of employees.” It doesn’t give more specific guidance on if this means all employees or any specific number.

Training Questions

Who needs to be trained?

Employers are responsible for providing training to all their California employees except for those who work remotely from places of their own choosing and which the employer has no control over.

Hybrid employees need to receive training for the workplaces they report to that are subject to the new requirements. Employees located entirely outside of California do not need to receive training.

Does training have to be conducted live?

Cal/OSHA hasn’t said whether the training has to be live.

Guidance on a similar regulatory scheme for healthcare workers says the training does not need to be live or in person, so long as employees have an opportunity to ask questions and have someone knowledgeable about the plan respond to them within one business day. It is unclear whether that will be the same rule for this law.

What are the qualifications required to conduct training?

The law doesn’t specify what qualifications are needed. Having knowledge about the plan and its implementation in the workplace is one of the key aspects because the training needs to include an opportunity for employees to ask questions about the plan.

If HR is knowledgeable enough to conduct the training, they are likely qualified enough to do so.

When does training need to be conducted?

Training must be conducted by July 1, 2024.

Multiple Worksite Questions

Do we need a different plan for each worksite?

The law requires that employers create plans that are “specific to the hazards and corrective measures for each work area and operation.” It’s unlikely that a single plan will function effectively for multiple worksites but if it does, a single plan is enough.

One possible option may be to create a core plan that covers a majority of issues and attach an addenda for each workplace with their specific hazards and procedures.

How do we count employees if we have multiple worksites?

Each worksite must have its own headcount.

What are the responsibilities and considerations for multiemployer worksites?

The new requirements state that you must consider how you will “coordinate implementation of the plan with other employers, when applicable.” It’s not clear the extent to which you will need to collaborate with other employers, as that answer will turn on individual circumstances.

At the least, at worksites over which you have a majority of control, you will need to create your own workplace violence plan and attempt to work with any other relevant employers to take their practices into consideration.

Do we need a plan for our worksites located outside of California?

No. These requirements only apply to California worksites.

Third-Party Coordination Questions

What do I have to do as a temporary staffing agency?

Both staffing agencies and host employers are responsible for providing workplace violence prevention plans and training. The relevant agency and host employer will need to coordinate their plans together so that employees are appropriately prepared.

What about employees that travel to worksites controlled by other employers as a part of their work?

If your employees are working from a place of your choosing, even if you do not have control over the workplace, you should have some kind of plan in place.

That will vary case-by-case, but a thorough risk assessment will help you identify hazards that you can then implement policies to mitigate.

How does this requirement work with shared worksites? What about the remote working exception?

It’s unclear what responsibilities fall to whom when it comes to shared worksites. It is a best practice to create a workplace violence plan for those spaces and to coordinate with any other employers who share them.

For employees who work from shared workspaces remotely, you may not need to create a plan if (1) that worksite is not under your control and (2) working at that site is a decision made entirely by the employee.

Staying Compliant with California Workplace Violence Prevention

Need additional help? SixFifty has put together a free tool to craft your downloadable California Workplace Violence Prevention Plan. Get started today!