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Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML)

We wanted to provide a summary of the new Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) to highlight some information that can be useful to you. The PFML covers all employers in Washington State (except for the federal government). To be eligible, employees must have worked at least 820 hours for any employer in Washington during the last four full calendar quarters or the first four of the last five full calendar quarters. Employees must have also performed all or most of their work in Washington State. Employees are eligible for PFML for their own or a family member's serious health condition, to care for a newborn or adopted child, or for military leave.


To qualify for PFML, employees have to give their employers at least 30 days written notice (unless the need to take leave arises unexpectedly, then a shorter notice is allowed and may even be provided after taking the leave) of the need for leave. Employees will also need to obtain a Certification of Serious Health Condition from their physician. With this certification and proper ID, employees can apply for paid leave on this website: https://paidleave.wa.gov/


The PFML provides employees up to 12 weeks of paid time off in a calendar year for the birth and care of a newborn or for qualifying a serious health condition. Employees do not get benefits during the first week of time off--the waiting period. Employees are entitled to be reinstated to their position after the leave if the employer employs more than 50 employees. There are other laws, such as the Family Medical Leave, that may overlap with these benefits.


Each case is unique and there are different exceptions and restrictions that could apply, ALWAYS CONSULT WITH AN ATTORNEY ABOUT YOUR CASE.


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