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With the new year right around the corner, the Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD) has published an employer toolkit designed to guide employers as they implement the new Washington State Paid Family and Medical Leave (WA PFL) law, for which certain employer requirements begin January 1, 2019. The toolkit focuses on employer responsibilities and touches on several topics, including:

Overview of Law and Benefit

  • Entitlement and leave reasons
  • Employee eligibility
  • Which employers are covered, as well as those that are exempt and other exceptions
  • Collective bargaining agreements and small business requirements


  • How the program is funded
  • Step-by-step instructions for calculating the employee portion of premiums
  • Withholding guidelines


  • Tracking and reporting of employees’ hours and wages
  • Proposed reporting requirements, with a link to rulemaking information

Employer Readiness Checklist

  • Specific employer steps broken out by season, including Fall 2018, Winter 2019, and Spring 2019

Sample Employee Communications

  • Sample employee handbook content
  • Sample text for employee notices
  • Sample employee paystub insert

Because some facets of the program are still in development and rulemaking is still in progress, the ESD is planning to publish periodic updates to the toolkit. Employers are encouraged to visit www.paidleave.wa.gov for the most up-to-date information. In addition, ReedGroup will continue to keep you updated as we learn new information.

Sheri Pullen

Sheri Pullen

Sheri Pullen is a Senior Compliance Specialist, Absence and Accommodation Compliance, with Reed Group who has more than 20 years of experience in writing, editing, business analysis, and consulting. Ms. Pullen is responsible for developing leave of absence and disability content across a variety of platforms as well as providing direction and expertise regarding federal and state leave law compliance. Prior to her current role, Ms. Pullen wrote human resources and benefits policies and web content, created instructional content for software users, and led software implementations. Ms. Pullen holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Kansas.

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