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Oregon Passes Bill to Obliterate the Redundancies Between OFLA and PLO Part 2

18 Jun

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Update Applicable to:Effective date
All employers with 25 or more employees in OregonJuly 1, 2024


What happened?

On March 22, 2024, Governor Kotek signed SB 1515 into law harmonizing Oregon’s overlapping and confusing set of leave laws between the federal Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA), and Paid Leave Oregon (PLO). Some Sections become effective on July 1, 2024.


What are the details?

We wanted to expand on our previous update regarding Oregon law regarding the simplification of OFLA, FMLA, and PLO.


Key Bites

  • Forward-Looking Leave Year Required: Starting July 1, employers must adopt a forward-looking leave year to calculate the OFLA leave an employee can take in a year. This refers to a continuous 52-week period starting from the Sunday before the leave commences. Employers not using this method will need to transition to it.
  • Some Covered Reasons for Leave Eliminated: OFLA’s covered reasons for leave will be reduced to limit overlap with Paid Leave Oregon (PLO). OFLA will no longer cover the following reasons for leave:
  • To care for an infant or newly adopted or foster child
    • To care for a family member with a serious health condition (except for caring for a sick or injured child at home)
    • To recover from, or seek treatment for, the employee’s serious health condition
  • Employees’ leave entitlement under OFLA will be limited to the following:
  • 12 weeks of annual leave for childcare due to sickness, injury, or public health emergency-related closures.
  • 4 weeks of annual bereavement leave (2 weeks per death).
  • 12 weeks of leave for pregnancy or childbirth-related incapacity.
  • 14 days of leave per deployment under the Oregon Military Family Leave Act.
  • From July 1, 2024, to December 31, 2024, OFLA will grant employees an additional two weeks of leave for legal procedures related to foster care or child adoption. This is over and above any other OFLA leaves. Starting January 1, 2025, this provision will fall under PLO.
  • Rescinding Previously Designated OFLA Leaves: Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) mandates employers to follow procedures for withdrawing approvals for OFLA leaves, effective from July 1, 2024. Employers can use the Oregon Employment Department’s model notice for these communications. More details are available on the platform and the updated BOLI page.
  • PLO AND USE OF ACCRUED PAID LEAVE: Employees on PLO leave can use their accrued paid leave with PLO benefits for full wage replacement. Employers may allow the use of accrued leave for over-full wage replacement and decide the sequence of different leave types of usage.


Business Considerations

  • Employers should adopt a forward-looking leave year for OFLA, which is a continuous 52-week period starting from the Sunday before the leave commences.
  • Employers should train managers on the changes introduced to ensure they are well-informed and can effectively manage their teams.
  • Employers should notify employees who have already been approved for leave under OFLA for reasons that will no longer be covered as of July 1, 2024, that their leave will not be protected by OFLA after this date.
  • Employers should inform employees that their leave may be covered by PLO and provide them with relevant contact information, in addition to notifying them about changes to OFLA.


Source References


Resources

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This communication is intended solely for the purpose of conveying information. The present post might incorporate hyperlinks directing readers to websites managed by third-party entities. The inclusion of any links within this communication is meant to serve as points of reference and could encompass opinion articles from various law firms, articles from HR associations, official websites, news releases, and documents of government agencies, and other relevant third-party sources. Vensure has no authority over these external websites and bears no responsibility for their content. Furthermore, Vensure does not endorse the materials present on these websites. The contents of this communication should not be interpreted as legal advice or as a legal standpoint concerning specific facts or scenarios. Nor should it be deemed an exhaustive compilation of facts potentially pertinent to federal, state, or local laws. It is strongly advised that employers solicit legal guidance from an employment attorney when undertaking actions in response to any legal updates provided. This is due to the possibility of future alterations occurring in federal, state, and local laws, regulations, as well as the directives and guidelines issued by governing agencies. These changes may transpire at any given time, potentially rendering certain portions of the content within this update void or inaccurate.

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