Parental Leave Rights Expanded Under New California Law - Best Best & Krieger
Legal Alerts Oct 23, 2017

Parental Leave Rights Expanded Under New California Law

Businesses and Agencies with 20 or More Employees Impacted

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Big changes are on the horizon for smaller-sized businesses and agencies in California. Senate Bill 63, also called the New Parent Leave Act, provides up to 12 weeks of job-protected bonding leave to employees of businesses and agencies that employ 20 or more people.
 
Signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Oct. 12, the New Parent Leave Act mandates that leave is available within one year of the child’s birth, adoption or foster care placement. To qualify for leave protection, the following criteria must be met:
1.) the employee worked a minimum of 12 months for the employer,
2.) the employee has at least 1,250 hours of service with the employer during the past 12-month period, and
3.) the employee works at a worksite with 20 or more employees within a 75-mile radius.
 
Previously, this kind of protected baby bonding leave was required to be provided under the California Family Rights Act only by employers with 50 or more employees.
 
Under the New Parent Leave Act, an employee must be reinstated to the same position he or she held prior to going on leave or to one that is comparable. The employer must allow use of accrued paid leave, such as vacation or sick leave. All employer-provided health benefits must also be maintained throughout the length of the leave for up to 12 weeks. Finally, the law also prohibits any discrimination or retaliation against an employee for taking or attempting to take parental leave.
 
The New Parent Leave Act will take effect Jan. 1. Smaller businesses and agencies are advised to review the leave criteria and update employment policies where applicable.
 
If you have any questions about this law or how it may impact your business or agency, please contact the attorney authors of this Legal Alert listed to the right in the firm’s Labor & Employment practice group, or your BB&K attorney.
 
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Disclaimer: BB&K Legal Alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqué.

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