Skip to content
Alight named by Fortune as one of the ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ in 2024

2023 Changes to Minnesota’s Pregnancy Accommodation & Parenting Leave Laws

Below is a summary of recent changes to Minnesota’s pregnancy accommodation and parental leave legislation, which went into effect July 1, 2023.

Minnesota’s MN SF 3035 is an extensive bill that covers many topics from biennial budgets to regulations of building and construction contracts. It amends Minnesota’s Nursing Mothers, Lactating Employees, and Pregnancy Accommodations law (Minn. Stat. § 181.939) and Minnesota’s Parenting Leave and Accommodations law (Minn. Stat. § 181.940 et seq.).

Nursing Mothers, Lactating Employees, and Pregnancy Accommodations Law Changes:

  • Adding Nursing and Lactation Rights and Requirements:
    • New amendments to the law require that employers provide all nursing and lactating employees with break time to express milk without losing compensation. This is regardless of their child’s age or whether providing the breaks unduly disrupts the operations of the employer. Additionally, new amendments allow employees to choose when to express milk based on their needs. This can be during an existing paid or unpaid break, or during some other time. Furthermore, workplace lactation spaces provided to such employees must be clean, private, and secure.
  • Adding Accommodation Reasons and Examples:
    • The law is amended to add temporary leave of absence, a modification to work schedule or job assignment, and more frequent or longer breaks. These are examples of “reasonable accommodation” necessitated by an employee's health conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth.
  • Expanding Employer Coverage:
    • The law is modified to expand employer coverage, providing that all employees, regardless of employer size, have a right to nursing, lactation, and pregnancy accommodations. Previously, the law only covered employers with 15 or more employees, including the state and its political subdivisions. With the new amendments, "employer" means a person or entity that employs one or more employees, including the state and its political subdivisions.
  • Adding Employer Notice Requirements:
    • Modifications to the law require a new notice be provided to employees. Employers must inform employees of the rights of pregnant and lactating employees under this law at the time of hire and when an employee makes an inquiry about or requests parental leave. Additionally, employers must include this information in the employee handbook if one is provided to employees. The notice must be provided in English and the primary language of the employee. The new employer notice can be found and downloaded here (English version). The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) will make the required notice available to employers in English and the five most common languages spoken in Minnesota.
  • Expanding Job and Benefits Protection:
    • The bill also modifies the law to extend reinstatement rights and benefits protections to those employees who take leave as a pregnancy accommodation and expands anti-discrimination/anti-retaliation protections to employees who request pregnancy, nursing, or lactation accommodations, or assert their rights or remedies under the law.

 

Parenting Leave and Accommodations Law Changes:

  • Expanding Employee Eligibility and Employer Coverage:
    • The eligibility provision for the Parenting Leave and Accommodations law is modified to eliminate the months- and hours-worked requirements for employees. Additionally, the law is modified to expand employer coverage, reducing the minimum employee count from 21 or more employees down to one or more employee(s). With the new amendments, "employer" means a person or entity that employs one or more employees and includes an individual, corporation, partnership, association, business, trust, nonprofit organization, group of persons, state, county, town, city, school district, or other governmental subdivision. Thus, the modifications provide that all employees (except independent contractors), regardless of their employer’s size or amount of time for which they have worked for their employer, have the rights to parenting leave and accommodations upon hire.
  • Expanding Anti-Retribution Protections:
    • The bill modifies the law to expand anti-retribution protections to employees who request parenting leave under the law.

What Will This Change Within Alight Leave Solutions?

Alight Leave Solutions specializes in state and federal leave of absence solutions, including certain unpaid leave and accommodation offerings. Alight will incorporate and implement the changes made by recent legislative action to Minnesota’s Nursing Mothers, Lactating Employees, and Pregnancy Accommodations law and Minnesota’s Parenting Leave and Accommodations law. Furthermore, Alight supplies the employee notice to clients’ employees requesting leave for a potentially qualifying reason under these laws. Alight will begin providing the new notice in connection with the recent legislative changes.

What Employers Should Consider

Employers should be aware of the upcoming changes to both Minnesota’s Nursing Mothers, Lactating Employees, and Pregnancy Accommodations law and Minnesota’s Parenting Leave and Accommodations law. These changes impact workplace accommodations and employee notification requirements. Employers should add the new notice to their employee handbooks and employee onboarding materials in compliance with the new requirements.

Related Insights


Two policy changes by Ontario WSIB, to traumatic and chronic policy application in adjudication of claims, and to appeals

Alight’s case managers will guide our clients through Ontario WSIB changes and ensure quality evidence is attained and provided in all claims that should be challenged.

Provincial and territorial leaves across Canada

Alight has created a quick reference infographic to help you easily identify which leaves are available in each province and territory.

Changes to Paid Leave Oregon rules

Effective January 12, 2024, the Oregon Employment Department (OED) has made changes to Paid Leave Oregon that will affect how employers manage paid leaves for their employees.