Can an employee use the New Parent Leave Act to take time off to care for a family member if we employ less than 50 employees?

No. The New Parent Leave Act has some similarities to the federal Family and Medical Leave Act and the California Family Rights Act, but the reasons for leave are more restrictive. The New Parent Leave Act requires employers with 20–49 employees to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to its employees to bond with a newborn child, or a child placed through adoption or foster care.

To be eligible, the employee asking for the time off must have worked for the employer for at least one year, have worked at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months preceding the request for the time off​ and work within 75 miles of at least 20 other employees of this employer.

As a result, your employee is not entitled to take time off to care for a family member, but would be eligible to take time off if the employee became a new parent. The time off under California’s New Parent Leave Act must be taken within one year of the birth, adoption​ or placement of the child through foster care.

For more information, visit California Parental Leave​ in the HR Library.