Washington Leave of Absence (FMLA) laws & compensation compliance analysis

Washington Leave of Absence (FMLA): What you need to know

Beginning January 1, 2020, eligible employees in Washington state will be entitled to up to 18 weeks of paid family and medical leave per year. (2017 SB 5975; Wa. Rev. Code Tit. 50A)
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Covered employers. “Covered employers” means all public and private employers with at least one person in “employment” in the state of Washington. Employers with fewer than 50 employees may opt out of the employer portion of premiums for family and medical leave.
Covered employees. Federal employees, self-employed workers, and independent contractors are excluded; however, self-employed individuals may opt in to the program if desired.
Family members. “Family member” means a child, grandchild, grandparent, parent, sibling, or spouse of an employee.
“Spouse” means a husband or wife, as the case may be, or a state registered domestic partner.
“Parent” means the biological, adoptive, de facto, or foster parent, stepparent, or legal guardian of an employee or the employee’s spouse or an individual who stood in loco parentis to an employee when the employee was a child.
“Child” includes a biological, adopted, or foster child, a stepchild, or a child to whom the employee stands in loco parentis, is a legal guardian, or is a de facto parent, regardless of age or dependency status.
Leave eligibility. Employees become eligible for family and medical leave benefits after working for at least 820 hours during the qualifying period (either the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters or, if eligibility is not established, the last 4 completed calendar quarters immediately preceding the request for leave).
Reasons for leave. Medical leave means leave taken by the employee for his or her ...

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