Major life and family changes often require a large amount of time and energy to adjust to them properly. This is especially true with the addition or children or onset of a condition requiring a close family member to need care. California has long recognized the need for many employees to have the ability to take leave to attend to these situations and still have the protection of returning to their job at a later date.
As of January 1, 2021, California law expanded protected leave to more employees than ever before. Until recently, the California Family Rights Act (“CFRA”) prohibited employers with 50 or more employees located within 75 miles of the worksite from refusing to grant a request for up to 12 workweeks of unpaid protected leave in a 12-month period in order to:
- Bond with a new child or
- Care for themselves, a parent, a spouse, or a child.
This leave applied to any employee who worked at least 1,250 hours for their employer within the last 12 months.
Changes to the CFRA
Under the expanded protections of the CFRA, this protected leave applies to California employers with 5 or more employees. It also requires that if an employer employs both of a child’s parents, they both be allowed CFRA leave because of a child’s:
- Foster placement, or
- Health condition.
Additionally, the CFRA now makes it illegal to deny a request for up to 12 workweeks of unpaid protected leave in a 12-month period by their employee if a qualified urgent situation arises in relation to covered active duty or a call to covered active duty by a branch of the United States Armed Forces for that employee’s:
- Domestic partner,
- Parent, or
Contact an Employment Lawyer Today
It’s important to know the law to make sure your employer respects your rights in the workplace, and you receive fair treatment at all times. If you have questions about whether the new CFRA protections apply to you or have been improperly denied protected leave at work, the experienced California employment lawyers at Rothschild & Alwill, APC are here to help. Contact us today to discuss your situation, learn more, and ensure you get what you deserve from your employer.