Once again, the State has announced major COVID updates this week. For starters, on Monday October 17, 2022 Governor Newsom announced that the California COVID-19 State of Emergency (SOE) will (supposedly) end February 28, 2023. However, he indicated that as the SOE ends, the California “SMARTER Plan continues to guide California’s strategy to best protect people from COVID-19.” You can find the Governor’s full press release here.

On September 29, 2022, Governor Newsom signed AB 1949, which creates protected bereavement leave under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). Effective January 1, 2023, AB 1949 prohibits an employer from refusing to grant an eligible employee the opportunity to take up to five days of bereavement leave upon the death of a qualifying family member.  The new requirement applies to employers with five or more employees. 

On September 29, 2022, Governor Newsom signed AB 1041, which states that in addition to the family members outlined in California’s paid sick leave law and the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), an employee also can take leave to care for a “designated person.”

Currently, under the CFRA, eligible employees may take job-protected leave to care for their child, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, spouse, or registered domestic partner. AB 1041 adds a “designated person” to that list.

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