Washington Paid Family & Medical Leave (PFML)
The Employment Security Department administers the Paid Family and Medical Leave program. The program is a state-run insurance benefit passed by the Legislature in 2017.
It allows most employees to receive up to 12 weeks of paid leave for:
- Bonding after the birth or placement of a child.
- An employee’s serious health condition.
- A serious health condition of a qualifying family member.
- Certain military events.
The premium is 0.4% of each employee’s gross wages, not including tips, up to the Social Security cap ($137,700 in 2019; $142,800 for next year). Employers pay 1/3 and employees pay 2/3 of the premium. Companies with less than 50 employees do not need to make an employer premium contribution. To receive benefits under the Paid Family and Medical Leave program, you must have worked a total of at least 820 hours for any Washington employers during the previous 12 months.
Benefits are capped at a maximum of $1,000/wk payable for up to 12 weeks.
Employers can provide paid family and medical leave benefits either through the state-run program, or purchase a voluntary private plan that provides benefits equal to or greater than the state minimum requirements.