Changes to Illinois Family Bereavement Leave

Compliance, Employee Benefits

In June 2022, the State of Illinois amended its existing Child Bereavement Leave Act to become the Family Bereavement Leave Act. Previously, unpaid bereavement leave was available for eligible employees following the death of a child. Starting on January 1, 2023, unpaid bereavement leave will be available for eligible employees following the death of a covered family member.

Changes to the Illinois Family Bereavement Act

The Family Bereavement Leave Act applies to employers who have 50 or more employees nationwide in 20 weeks or more during the current or preceding calendar year. Employees are eligible for bereavement leave if the employee:

  • Has worked for the employer for a total of 12 months;
  • Has worked at least 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months, and
  • Works at a location where the employer has at least 50 employees within 75 miles.

Starting on January 1, 2023, eligible employees in Illinois are able to take up to 2 weeks of unpaid bereavement leave to:

  • Attend the funeral or alternative of a funeral of a covered family member;
  • Make arrangements necessitated by the death of a covered family member;
  • To grieve the death of a covered family member; or
  • Be absent from work due to:
    • a miscarriage;
    • an unsuccessful round of intrauterine insemination or of an assisted reproductive technology procedure;
    • a failed adoption match or an adoption that is not finalized because it is contested by another party;
    • a failed surrogacy agreement;
    • a diagnosis that negatively impacts pregnancy or fertility;
    • or a stillbirth.

The Family Bereavement Leave Act defines “covered family members” to include the following individuals

  • Children
  • Stepchildren
  • Father-in-law
  • Mother-in-law
  • Grandchildren
  • Grandparents
  • Parents
  • Stepparents
  • Domestic partner
  • Spouse
  • Sibling

Key Takeaway

Employers with employees located in Illinois would be well served to determine what actions they may need to take to comply with the changes to Illinois’ Family Bereavement Leave Act. Employers with eligible employees may need to update their current bereavement leave policies to comply with the new requirements. Those employers should also be ready to comply with requests for bereavement leave from eligible employees starting January 1, 2023.

Please reach out to your M3 account executive with any questions.

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