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Understanding Your CFRA Rights in California

At our firm, we are committed to protecting the rights of employees under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). California provides robust legal protections to ensure that employees can take necessary leave for family and medical reasons without fear of losing their job or facing retaliation. Our goal is to help you understand your CFRA rights and provide the support you need if your employer violates these rights.

What is the California Family Rights Act (CFRA)?

The California Family Rights Act (CFRA) is a state law that allows eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for specified family and medical reasons. CFRA is designed to help employees balance their work and family responsibilities by allowing them to take reasonable leave for certain medical conditions and family needs.

Who is Eligible for CFRA Leave?

To be eligible for CFRA leave, employees must meet the following criteria:

Work for a Covered Employer

The employer must have at least five employees.

Duration of Employment: The employee must have worked for the employer for at least 12 months (not necessarily consecutive).

Hours Worked

The employee must have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months immediately preceding the leave.

Reasons for Taking CFRA Leave

Eligible employees can take CFRA leave for the following reasons:

Personal Health

For a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform their job.

Family Health

To care for a spouse, domestic partner, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, or sibling with a serious health condition.

Childbirth and Newborn Care

For the birth and care of the employee's newborn child, or for the placement of a child for adoption or foster care.

Military Family Leave

For qualifying exigencies related to the covered active duty or call to covered active duty of an employee’s spouse, domestic partner, child, or parent in the Armed Forces.

Rights and Protections Under CFRA

As an employee in California, you have several critical rights and protections under CFRA:

Job Protection

You have the right to return to the same or an equivalent job at the end of your CFRA leave. This includes maintaining the same pay, benefits, and other terms and conditions of employment.

Continuation of Health Benefits

Your employer must maintain your group health insurance coverage under the same terms and conditions as if you had not taken leave.

Intermittent Leave

You have the right to take CFRA leave intermittently or on a reduced schedule when medically necessary.

Protection from Retaliation

Your employer is prohibited from retaliating against you for exercising your CFRA rights. This includes taking adverse actions such as termination, demotion, or harassment.

Differences Between CFRA and FMLA

While CFRA and the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) share many similarities, there are some key differences:

Covered Family Members

CFRA includes domestic partners, grandparents, grandchildren, and siblings as covered family members, while FMLA does not.

Pregnancy Disability

Pregnancy disability leave (PDL) is not counted against CFRA leave, allowing employees to take up to four months of PDL and an additional 12 weeks of CFRA leave.

Military Leave

CFRA does not cover military caregiver leave, unlike FMLA.

Violations of CFRA Rights

If your employer violates your CFRA rights, you have several options to seek compensation:

Internal Complaint

You can file a complaint with your employer’s human resources department or follow the company’s internal grievance procedures.

Government Complaint

You can file a complaint with the California Civil Rights Department (CRD), which is responsible for enforcing CFRA.

Legal Action

You have the right to file a lawsuit against your employer in state court. Remedies may include job reinstatement, back pay, front pay, and other compensatory damages.

How We Can Help

Our experienced employment and labor law attorneys are dedicated to advocating for employees' rights under CFRA. We understand the complexities of CFRA regulations and the significant impact that violations can have on your career and personal life. We are here to provide the support and legal expertise you need.

We offer a comprehensive range of services to support employees facing CFRA violations, including:

Case Evaluation

Conducting a thorough assessment of your situation to determine the best legal strategy.

Legal Representation

Representing you in negotiations, administrative proceedings, and court if necessary.


Advocating for your fair treatment and compliance with CFRA regulations in your former or current workplace.

Contact Us

If you believe your CFRA rights have been violated, we are here to help. Contact our firm today for a free consultation to discuss your case and explore your legal options. Together, we can fight for your rights and ensure that you receive the justice and fair treatment you deserve.

CFRA is a vital protection for employees facing significant family and medical challenges. Let us stand with you in your pursuit of justice and ensure that your rights are fully protected.

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