Washington State Passes New Legislation Expanding Paid Family Leave

When new leave legislation goes into effect, insurance carriers need agile absence management solutions in order to adapt in real time. In this blog, you’ll learn key details ofrecently passed legislation on paid family leave in Washington state and how FINEOS is helping carriers remain in compliance. 

In January 2020, Washington’s Paid Family and Medical Leave program launched, providing benefits for employees to take leave for their own or a family member’s health condition, for bonding with a new child, and for reasons related to a family member’s military deployment.   

For leave reasons related to one’s family member, as originally passed, the law permitted an employee to take leave for their spouse or domestic partner, child (biological, adopted, foster or stepchild), parent or legal guardian (or spouse’s parent), sibling, grandchild, grandparent (or spouse’s grandparent), plus a son-in-law or daughter-in-law. 

Washington Senate Bill 5097, signed into law on May 10, expands the definition of a “family member” to include: 

  • any individual who regularly resides in the employee’s home with an expectation that the employee care for the individual 
  • any individual where the relationship creates an expectation that the employee care for the person 

 In either case, in order for the employee to take leave for such an individual, the individual must depend on the employee for care. 

The change goes into effect July 29, 2021. 


What is FINEOS doing to prepare? 

FINEOS is making changes to its product to accommodate the family member definition change to the Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave program. By investing in modern, agile absence management systems like the cloud-based FINEOS Platform, insurance carriers will be able to respond quickly to changes in legislation and remain in compliance.  

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