Leave options explorer

Whether you're looking into planning a leave or guiding an employee through the process, understanding the federal and state leave laws that apply is the first step.

We hope you find the information, content, and materials we provide useful. They are meant for general informational purposes only, and are not intended as legal advice.

Using the leave options explorer

How do I view different leave scenarios?

Toggle between leave type (parental, medical, caregiver), your state, and how long you've worked at your company by clicking the blue underlined text at the top of the explorer.

This is showing a leave starting on 9/30. How do I make it reflect my leave dates?

The leave eligibility explorer is currently in beta and not able to intake specific leave dates at this time. If you have a Cocoon account through your employer, you can plan a leave specific to your unique circumstances and eligibility requirements. By default, the leave eligibility explorer shows leaves beginning on 9/30. However, it will still give you a general idea of which state and federal programs you may be eligible for based on your circumstances. Communicate directly with your employer about a leave plan that's right for you.

Does Cocoon guarantee these programs apply to me?

No, the leave options explorer is a tool designed to help you understand the leave laws that may apply to you. There are many factors that determine your specific leave eligibility not reflected here including, but not limited to:

• History of previous leaves
• Your company's office location
• Your work schedule and hours
• Any concurrent leaves
• Caregiver relationships covered by individual states
• Your company's policies

We suggest using the explorer as a starting point for a conversation with your HR team about what leave you may be able to take.

How do my company's leave policies affect these options?

Companies may provide employees with leave policies that may include time and/or pay beyond what's covered by state and federal policies. You may be able to find this information in your Employee Handbook or a team wiki, or by reaching out to your HR team.

How do I know which laws apply to me?

Click any portion of the leave timeline (the purple area in this case) to see what state and federal laws cover your leave.

How do I see how much time I'm eligible for versus how much pay?

Use the time and pay toggle to switch your view between pay available from state programs and time available from state and federal programs. No matter where you live in the U.S., if you work for a private company over 50 employees and have worked there for over 12 months, you're likely entitled to protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Depending on what state you live in you may also be entitled to additional time, or your state may offer partial wage replacement for a portion of your leave.

What does it mean if the tool says "No basis for leave"?

If the tool returns "No basis for leave" and you have a tenure of 0 or 6 months, your state likely does not have programs that provide protected time or pay. Your employer may still have a leave policy you can use. Talk to your HR team to understand your options.

What leave types does Cocoon support?

Cocoon currently supports all FMLA-covered leave types: Parental, Medical, Caregiver, and Military Family leaves. Cocoon does not support partial-day intermittent leaves at this time.

FMLA and state law FAQ

How do I know if I'm eligible for FMLA or other state programs?

FMLA applies to private employers with 50 or more employees. To be eligible for leave under FMLA, you must:

• Have worked at your company for at least 12 months

• Have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months leading up to the leave, and

• Be employed at a location with 50 or more employees within 75 miles of the employee’s worksite.

FMLA also permits states to set standards that are more expansive and some states have done that. Be sure to check the specific eligibility requirements of any state programs that may apply to your leave. You can find links to the most common state programs here.

What are qualifying leave reasons under FMLA or other state programs?

The following reasons are the qualifying leave reasons under FMLA:

• The birth of a child, and to bond with the newborn child;
• The placement of a child for adoption or foster care, and to bond with that child;
• To care for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent – but not a parent “in-law”) with a serious health condition;
• To take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition; or
• For qualifying reasons due to the employee’s spouse, child, or parent being on covered active duty or call to covered active duty status as a member of the National Guard, Reserves, or Regular Armed Forces.

State programs may cover additional leave reasons (i.e. domestic violence, bereavement, organ donation). In particular, some states expand the relationships covered for caregiver leaves beyond a spouse, child, or parent to include siblings, grandparents, parents-in-law, and more.

What does it mean for a state or federal law to give "protected leave"?

Protected leave means that if you meet the necessary requirements, your employer is required by law to allow you to take leave, cannot discriminate or retaliate against you for doing so, and must hold your job or an equivalent job until your protected leaveis over. This does not, however, exempt you from being laid off or otherwise terminated for a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason.

What does "partial pay" mean?

State leave programs that provide leave pay often provide partial wage replacement. It varies by state, but those that have paid leave programs often pay a designated percentage of your salary, up to a weekly maximum. For instance, Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave (WA PFML) offers up to 90% pay with a weekly maximum of $1,427 (as of September 2023).

Where can I learn more about leave laws?

The U.S. is a complex web of leave laws. Check out our interactive map to see all current and upcoming parental, medical, and caregiver leave laws by state.

What leave types does Cocoon support?

Cocoon currently supports all FMLA-covered leave types: Parental, Medical, Caregiver, and Military Family leaves. Cocoon does not support partial-day intermittent leaves at this time.

Stop Googling. Let intelligent software handle leave eligibility.