Employment Law Report
HB 210 Grants Leave to Adoptive Parents
On March 23, 2021, Governor Andy Beshear signed House Bill 210 into law, making it mandatory for employers to provide employees who adopt children under the age of 10 up to six (6) weeks of personal leave. The bill further requires employers to provide the same type, amount, and duration of paid leave and other benefits to adoptive parents as is offered to birth parents. Essentially, any leave offered to birth parents must be offered to adoptive parents. The bill became effective on June 25, 2021.
The bill makes it clear that this leave is meant to provide adoptive parents with the chance to assist the adopted child in acclimating to his or her new surroundings. The text states that the bill does not apply to fictive kin, stepparents, stepsiblings, blood relatives, grandparents, or foster parents. While the bill provides protections that are afforded through the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the bill has a broader reach and covers employers who may not be subject to FMLA. Employers, regardless of how many people they employ, must now ensure that adoptive parents are provided with the same benefits offered to birth parents or they may be subjected to a discrimination lawsuit. The statute may be accessed here.