A bill passed by the Maryland General Assembly on March 30, 2021 extends the Maryland Flexible Leave Act (“the Act”) to cover bereavement leave. The bill now awaits Governor Hogan’s signature.
Under the Act, covered Maryland employers must allow their employees to use earned paid leave to care for immediate family members (children, spouse, and parents) with an illness. Employees covered by the Act can use their paid leave to care for an immediate family member under the same rules that apply for an employee’s use of paid leave for their own illness.
If approved by Governor Hogan, the Act would now require covered employers to permit employees to use paid leave for the death of a member of the employee’s immediate family. If the employee has multiple forms of paid leave available, the employee may elect the type and amount of accrued leave to use. For purposes of this new bereavement leave, the definition of child includes adult children.
The bill passed with veto proof majorities. As such, Maryland employers should update their leave policies to comply with the changes to the Act before they become effective on October 1, 2021.