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As part of the Paid Family and Medical Leave implementation, ESD is building a secure account management system where employers will file reports, pay premiums, and apply for voluntary plans, among other things. Employers will login to the system through Secure Access Washington (SAW). If you do not already have a SAW account, you will need to create one.
The development of the account management system is strategically phased to deliver the most value to customers as quickly as possible. That means that what you see the first time you log in to your account is not the finished product but the first iteration of a system that will be refined and expanded as we implement new components of the program.
Check back in spring of 2019 for more information.
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Most people employed in Washington who work 820 hours or more in the qualifying period, which is the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters before they plan to take leave, will qualify. There are some exceptions (federal employees, for example), but many of your working patients will likely qualify.
To use their benefits, they must experience a qualifying event. Leave events can be either Family or Medical.
- Care and bond after a baby’s birth or the placement of a child younger than 18
- Care for a family member experiencing an illness or medical event
- Certain military-connected events
- Care for yourself in relation to an illness or medical event
Paid Family and Medical Leave is structured as an insurance program. Your employees pay into the program through payroll withholding, which is remitted by you. They qualify by working 820 hours in the qualifying period, verified by employer reporting.
They must then experience a qualifying event. This event could be related to either family or medical leave. For example, an employee who is caring for their newborn would use family leave. An employee caring for themselves after a car accident would use medical leave.
After qualifying, the employee will file a claim with the Employment Security Department. This claim could be filed after the first missed day of work. In the car accident example, an employee could file their claim once they are physically able to. If the reason for leave is foreseeable, the employee must give you 30 days’ notice of their intention to take leave.
You will be notified of the employee’s claim for leave. A process for you to dispute the employee's claim will be developed in Phase 3 of Rulemaking. When the claim is approved, the employee receives their benefit payment within 14 days of the application. Payments are made biweekly after the first payment.
If you have 50 or more employees, the employee is eligible for job protection provided they have worked for you for 12 months or longer and have worked 1,250 hours in the year to date before the first day of leave.back to top