Update Applicable to:
All employers with employees who perform work in the state of Oregon.
As a reminder, eligible employees can start taking job-protected paid leave through Paid Leave Oregon (PLO) on September 3, 2023. See our previous communication and details here: LINK.
What are the details?
PLO is a state insurance program that provides monetary benefits to nearly all employees for certain family, medical, and safe leave purposes. Additionally, PLO requires employers of all sizes to provide job protection and group health benefits continuation while employees are out on covered leave.
The program is funded through payroll contributions and administered by the Oregon Employment Department (OED). Employers do not make these payments to employees.
The state will determine an employee’s eligibility when they apply. To be eligible for Paid Leave benefits, an employee must have earned $1,000 in the previous year. To be entitled to job protection and continuation of health care coverage, the employee must have worked for their current employer for at least 90 days before taking leave.
The OED will notify employers about the following:
- When an employee applies for leave
- Whether leave has been approved or denied
- Leave start and end dates
- Leave amounts
- Leave schedule (consecutive or intermittent)
All other information about an employee’s claim is confidential.
Amount of Leave and Use
Eligible employees can take up to 12 weeks of Paid Leave per year for any combination of family, medical, or safe leave. Employees can take an additional two weeks for pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions.
Family leave is to care for a family member with a serious health condition or to bond with a new child. Medical leave is for the employee’s own serious health condition. Safe leave is for domestic violence, harassment, sexual assault, or stalking.
If the employee’s Paid Leave also qualifies for Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA) or Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), then the leaves will run concurrently.
Mandatory Forward-Looking OFLA Benefit Year in 2024
Beginning on July 1, 2024, employers will be required to use a forward-looking benefit year for purposes of calculating an employee’s OFLA leave entitlement—the same method that’s used to calculate an employee’s eligibility for PLO. This method tracks the employee’s 52-week benefit year beginning the Sunday before their first use of leave.
For more information, please see the links below:
What do employers need to do?
Employers should add a PLO policy to their handbook or new employee packet. If employers have not done so already, add the above model notice to the new hire packet and display it somewhere conspicuous in the workplace. Employers should prepare to provide extended job-protected leaves if they were not already subject to OFLA or FMLA.
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