On August 5, 2020, Georgia Governor Kemp signed the “Charlotte’s Law” law, which provides additional protection in the workplace for working mothers who have to express breast milk during work hours. Charlotte’s Law went into effect on August 5, 2020and applies to all private employers.

Under the new law, breastfeeding mothers are entitled to a “reasonable” break to express breast milk during working hours. Employers should consider the following:

  • Any break time taken under the new law must be paid at the employee’s regular wage.
  • Employers must provide a private space other than a toilet for workers to express breast milk in privacy on the construction site.
  • The law only applies to employees who work on the construction site. In other words, the law does not apply to employees who work from home.
  • A hardship exception may be available to employers with fewer than 50 employees if compliance with the law leads the employer to “unreasonable hardship”. Undue hardship refers to “significant difficulty or expense related to the size, financial resources, nature or structure of the employer’s business”.
  • Unlike federal law, Charlotte’s law is not limited to the first year after the employee’s child is born.

The new law does not provide guidance on what constitutes an “appropriate” time to express breast milk. There is also no upper limit to how long a nursing mother can be allowed to take lactation breaks after having a baby.