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December 18, 2020

California SB 1382 Expands the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) to Cover Any Employer with Five or More Employees

Posted by Jenn McCabe

CFRA

California Family Rights Act (CFRA) leaves are used by employees to take time off from work to care for ailing family members, for their own serious health condition, or for the arrival of a new child.  This leave is unpaid, but it is also a protected leave, meaning the employer must reserve that job, or one substantially similar to it, for the employee to return to.

Effective January 1, 2021, California SB 1382 expands the CFRA to cover any employer with five or more employees, down from the previous threshold of 50 employees. Small employers must be prepared for this change by adopting this policy and learning how to comply.  Larger employers must update policy documents and handbooks to cover the expanded protections that CFRA offers to employees.

The definition of family has been expanded. Originally, an immediate family member was defined as spouses, parents, and children. The following added relationships are now defined as covered under the Act: employee’s domestic partner, grandparents, grandchildren, and siblings. Furthermore, the child of the employee can now be a child of any age (i.e. an adult child over 18 who is not disabled).

The CFRA also now:

  • Ensures both new parents who work for the same employer will each be granted leave,
  • Provides a leave to a person whose spouse has been militarily deployed, and
  • Removes the distance requirement of having employer worksites needing to be within a 75-mile radius of each other.

Prior CFRA stated registered domestic partner. The revised CFRA updates that to domestic partner.


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