Illinois and Other Jurisdictions Expand Leave for Bereavement and Pregnancy-Related Losses | Perspectives & Events

As of January 1, 2023, many employees in Illinois are now qualified for expanded bereavement depart. While Illinois legislation earlier offered for leave pursuing the death of a child, the new Illinois Family Bereavement Go away Act (the “Act”) makes it possible for for leave in connection with the loss of life of supplemental relatives users and also losses related with specific being pregnant-, fertility-, and adoption-associated situations. Below the Act, employees are eligible for up to 2 months of unpaid bereavement depart per event and up to 6 weeks of unpaid bereavement depart throughout a 12-month period of time.

In the paragraphs that abide by, we elaborate on the new Illinois legislation and present a summary of analogous developments in other states.

What is needed of employers beneath the Act?

The Act necessitates employers with 50 or far more workforce to provide 2 months, or 10 do the job times, of unpaid go away to personnel grieving the demise of a “covered spouse and children member” or for specific being pregnant-, fertility-, or adoption-associated activities.

In the party of more than one qualifying function in a 12-month period, businesses must give up to 6 complete weeks of unpaid go away for the duration of the 12-month period.

What are qualifying occasions under the Act?

Loss of life of a “covered spouse and children member”

Beneath the Act, a “covered spouse and children member” is described as an employee’s (1) child, (2) stepchild, (3) husband or wife, (4) domestic spouse, (5) sibling, (6) parent, (7) mom-in-law, (8) father-in-regulation, (9) grandchild, (10) grandparent, and (11) stepparent.

An employee is qualified for depart to:

  • Go to the funeral of a coated household member.
  • Make preparations necessitated by the dying of a protected household member.
  • Grieve the demise of a coated family member.

Pregnancy-, fertility-, or adoption-linked situations

An worker is qualified to be absent from work thanks to (1) a miscarriage, (2) an unsuccessful round of intrauterine insemination or of an assisted reproductive technological innovation process, (3) a failed adoption match or an adoption that is not finalized simply because it is contested by one more social gathering, (4) a failed surrogacy settlement, (5) a diagnosis that negatively impacts being pregnant or fertility, or (6) a stillbirth.

What is essential of personnel less than the Act?

Workers must offer their employer with at minimum 48 hours advance notice of their intent to get go away until accomplishing so is not realistic and practicable and ought to comprehensive their bereavement leave within 60 times of obtaining notice of the qualifying event.

Can companies ask for proof of a qualifying celebration?

The Act lets employers to involve that workforce provide sensible documentation of the qualifying function entitling them to bereavement depart.

In the event of the loss of life of a “covered relatives member,” the Act signifies that fair documentation may well involve a demise certificate a published obituary or prepared verification of death, burial, or memorial providers from a mortuary, funeral dwelling, burial modern society, crematorium, spiritual establishment, or governing administration company.

For depart ensuing from pregnancy-, fertility-, or adoption-similar activities, the Act signifies that realistic documentation may well consist of a kind delivered by the Illinois Department of Labor to be filled out by a healthcare practitioner or documentation from the adoption or surrogacy organization certifying that the staff professional a qualifying party. For go away ensuing from pregnancy-, fertility-, or adoption-related events, an employer may not need that an worker discover which party qualifies them for go away.

How does the Act relate to federal FMLA depart?

All companies lined by the federal Spouse and children and Health care Go away Act (“FMLA”) need to comply with the leave prerequisites of the Act. For an staff to be entitled to depart under the Act, the personnel ought to also qualify as an suitable employee below the FMLA. Appropriately, the personnel ought to have 12 months of work at the lined employer and at least 1,250 several hours labored above the past 12 months.

What’s more, the Act does not demand that businesses supply an worker go away that exceeds the quantity of leave permitted by the FMLA. Hence, if an staff has by now taken all of his or her qualified FMLA depart in 12-month period, the staff is ordinarily not suitable for further leave under the Act throughout that period of time. Of training course, absolutely nothing prohibits an employer from providing more leave than is needed by law.

What are the penalties for noncompliance with the Act?

An employee who believes their legal rights less than the Act have been violated may perhaps, in 60 times just after the day of the very last party constituting the alleged violation, file a complaint with the Illinois Division of Labor or a civil action. Businesses that are observed to have violated the Act may be topic to civil penalties, together with a $500 penalty for a initial offense and penalties of up to $1,000 for subsequent offenses. A court docket may well also purchase equitable aid to redress a violation or to implement the Act.

What about other states and localities?

Illinois is not the only condition to not long ago amend or take into account amending its bereavement leave laws. In California, for case in point, personnel are now suitable under specified situations for up to 5 days of unpaid bereavement depart upon the demise of a family member, such as a spouse, youngster, guardian, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, domestic partner, or guardian-in-law. This legislation turned helpful January 1, 2023. In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, equally, a modern legislation tends to make city personnel eligible for up to 3 times of compensated bereavement leave, which includes for the termination of a pregnancy. This law grew to become powerful September 22, 2021.

Related laws is pending in other jurisdictions. In New York, for occasion, state assembly bill AB5231-B would offer paid leave following “any pregnancy consequence,” such as restoration from a stillbirth, a miscarriage, or an abortion. In Kentucky, furthermore, household monthly bill 21RS HB 284 would have to have employers to present 3 days of compensated bereavement depart to dad and mom pursuing a miscarriage or stillbirth in the 3rd trimester. On the federal amount, the Parental Bereavement Act of 2021, alternatively called the Sarah Grace-Farley-Kluger Act, would entitle an eligible worker to up to 12 workweeks of leave for the duration of any 12-month interval for the death of a kid.


Companies really should critique their go away guidelines to ensure compliance with the new Illinois Act and any other legal guidelines in the spots in which they have employees. Multistate businesses matter to overlapping laws can look at creating a one plan that would comply with all of the bereavement-connected regulations in the jurisdictions in which they work.