Alabama has enacted legislation (Senate Bill 31) that requires certain employers to provide leave to adoptive parents. Senate Bill 31 takes effect July 1, 2022.
To be eligible for the leave discussed below, the employee must:
- Be employed by the employer for at least 12 months;
- Have worked at least 1,250 hours with the employer during the previous 12-month period; and
- Work at a location where the employer employs at least 50 employees within 75 miles of that worksite.
To be covered by the law, the employer must have 50 or more employees in 20 or more workweeks in the current or previous calendar year.
Basic Leave Entitlement
Under Senate Bill 31, covered employers must provide at least 12 weeks of unpaid family leave, to run concurrently with any other leave provided under federal law, to an eligible employee for the birth and care of a child born to that employee during the first year after the child's birth, or for the care of a child adopted by the employee within one year of placing the child with the employee. Requests for additional family leave for adopting an ill child or a child with a disability must be considered on the same basis as comparable cases of complications accompanying the birth of a child of an employee.
If a covered employer provides paid leave to employees for the birth and care of a child, the employer must provide the equivalent paid leave or two-weeks paid leave, whichever is less, to an employee for the care of an adopted child during the first year after the placement. An employer is only required to provide paid leave benefits to one of two different eligible employees if both employees would be using the benefits for the care of the same child placed for adoption.
If possible, the employee must provide their employer at least 30 days’ notice of the need for adoption leave. If the date of placement requires leave to begin in less than 30 days, the employee must provide notice as soon as practical.
If you are a covered employer:
- Ensure compliance with Senate Bill 31.
- Amend policies and practices if necessary.
- Train supervisors on how to recognize and respond to leave requests.