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New laws go into effect for 2022 in CT: Here's what you need to know

Some things are changing in Connecticut for 2022 including vaccination exemptions for children and paid family leave.

CONNECTICUT, USA — With a new year comes new laws, or at least parts of laws that will now take effect. 

Everything from recreational retail sales of cannabis to vaccination exemptions, here's some of what's changing for 2022:

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Paid Family Leave

Eligible workers can receive up to 12 weeks of income replacement for qualifying events. Connecticut is only the eighth state to enact a program of its kind, according to the governor's office.

For people interested in participating in the program, claims are being accepted for qualifying events that are happening on or after January 1, 2022.

Qualifying reasons to submit a claim include:

  • Medical leave for one’s own serious health condition (which includes pregnancy, as well as serving as a bone marrow or organ donor)

  • Caregiver leave to care for a family member experiencing a serious health condition

  • Bonding leave to bond with a new child that has entered a person’s home through birth, adoption, or foster care

  • Family violence leave to address issues arising from family violence

  • Qualifying exigency leave to address issues arising from a parent, child, or spouse’s military deployment

  • Military caregiver leave to care for a family member injured during active duty in the United States Armed Forces

Important to note: The amount of income replacement varies based on a worker’s earnings and is capped at 60 times the state minimum wage. The combination of employer-provided benefits and benefits received under the paid leave program cannot exceed 100% of a worker’s normal weekly earnings.

Lamont said this implementation is a milestone in Connecticut and the program is one of the strongest paid family and medical leave programs in the nation.

RELATED: The Real Story: CT's Paid Family Medical Leave Insurance and COVID-19 update

Religious Exemptions

Also beginning in 2022, families may no longer rely on religious exemptions for childhood vaccinations. 

An Act Concerning Immunizations changes Connecticut's communication requirements for students attending pre-K - 12 schools, daycare centers, and institutions of high education by removing exemptions that are not medical.

The law will take effect in September 2022. Children already in grades K-12 will be grandfathered in, meaning they can still claim the religious exemption. However, those students entering the school system cannot claim it.

RELATED: The Real Story | Gov. Lamont signs bill that ends religious exemptions for school vaccinations


Criminal record erasure: Allows for petitions to erase records for cannabis-related convictions within a certain period, including for possessing up to four ounces, using or possessing drug paraphernalia, or selling, manufacturing, or related actions involving up to four ounces or up to six plants grown in the person’s home for personal use. 

It also provides for automatic erasure of convictions within a certain period for possessing less than four ounces of cannabis or any quantity of non-narcotic or nonhallucinogenic drugs. This will go into effect in July 2022. 

Social equity recommendations: By January 1, 2022,  the Social Equity Council must make recommendations to the governor and the Finance, Revenue and Bonding, General Law, and Judiciary committees for legislation to implement social equity provisions when it comes to the use and sale of marijuana. 

Recreational sale: It's expected that Connecticut will permit the selling of recreational marijuana in mid-2022 or maybe later. No date has been set at this time.

RELATED: Legalized marijuana, sports betting, and religious exemptions from vaccines: Connecticut's politics in 2021

Deadly Force

With the use of force in police departments, provisions will be implemented beginning January 1, 2022.

Among other things, these provisions will limit the circumstances under which a law enforcement officer’s use of deadly physical force is justified. It will also establish factors to consider when evaluating whether the officer’s action was reasonable. The provisions will also limit when officers may use chokeholds or similar restraints.

RELATED: Governor Lamont signs police reform bill


Other provisions, laws, and acts will be implemented throughout 2022. You can find a full list of bills here. 


Jennifer Glatz is a digital content producer at FOX61 News. She can be reached at jglatz@fox61.com.  

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