Back in early September, when California Governor Gavin Newsom signed AB 1949 into law, the state of California became the third state to mandate bereavement leave for workers. The provisions of AB 1949, effective on January 1, 2023 and applicable when a business employs 5 or more workers, were adopted as an amendment to the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), but bereavement leave under the new law must be considered separate and distinct from the CFRA family and medical leave entitlement. Consequently, the five days of bereavement leave must be made available in addition to the 12 weeks of family and medical leave permitted separately under the CFRA. California joined Illinois which also adopted a mandatory bereavement leave provision earlier this summer. The Illinois program however actually expands the provisions of the Child Bereavement Leave Act and renamed it the Family Bereavement Leave Act (FBLA). These amendments as well, become effective on January 1, 2023 and expand the definition of family members. Under the FBLA, employee must work for an employer with at least 50 employees and have worked at least 12 months for the employer. Covered employers are required to grant employees 10 days of unpaid leave annually to grieve the death of a child. Prior to this year, only the state of Oregon had a mandatory bereavement law on the books, having put one in place back in 2014.