California Employee Leave to Cover Care for a ‘Designated Person’

calendar November 3, 2022

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed into law a bill expanding the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) and the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act (HWHFA) to cover employee leave to care for a “designated person.” The law takes effect Jan. 1, 2023.

I9-calendar-iconImportant Dates

Sept. 29, 2022 - The law expanding unpaid and paid employee leave to care for a “designated person” was enacted.

Jan. 1, 2023 - The law takes effect.

Changes to the CFRA

The CFRA requires private employers with at least five employees (and all public employers) to allow employees take up to 12 weeks of unpaid family care and medical leave annually. Employees are eligible if they have worked for their employers for at least 12 months and 1,250 hours in the previous 12 months.

One of the permitted purposes for CFRA leave is to care for a child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, spouse or domestic partner who has a serious health condition. The new law adds “designated person” to that list, defined as any individual related by blood or whose association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship. The law stipulates that a designated person may be identified by an employee at the time they request leave, and an employer may limit an employee to one designated person per 12-month period.

An employee may identify their designated person at the time they request leave.

Changes to the HWHFA

The HWHFA generally entitles employees who have worked for their employers for 30 or more days to paid sick days, including for the diagnosis, care or treatment of existing health conditions (or preventive care) for themselves or a family member. The new law expands “family member” to include a designated person, which, in this case, means a person identified by an employee at the time they request paid sick days. As with the amendment to the CFRA, an employer may limit an employee to one designated person per 12-month period.

 

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This Legal Update is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel for legal advice.
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