Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave (WA PFML)

If you work for a covered employer in Washington, you may be eligible for paid leave benefits under Washington’s Paid Family and Medical Leave (WA PFML) program. Enacted in 2017 and effective since January 1, 2020, this law allows eligible employees to take paid time off work to care for themselves or family members.

Whether you're planning for an upcoming birth, adoption, or medical event, or you need to take time off unexpectedly, understanding your rights under WA PFML can help you make informed decisions and ensure you receive the support you need during these important life moments.

Who is eligible for WA PFML?

Most employees are eligible for Paid Family and Medical Leave benefits if they have worked a minimum of 820 hours in Washington over the last year. This applies to full-time, part-time, temp, and seasonal employees—the total number of hours can be combined from multiple jobs. You can use Washington’s eligibility tool to see if you qualify.

What are the covered leave reasons under WA PFML?

Eligible employees can take:

• Family leave: For the birth or placement of a child for adoption or foster care, to care for a family member with a serious health condition, or for certain military-related events
• Medical leave: For the employee’s own serious health condition

How much will I get paid from WA PFML?

WA PFML provides job protection to eligible leave-takers and partial pay. The total weekly benefit amount is calculated based on an employee’s average weekly wage with a maximum cap of $1,456  each week for 2024. If you want to get an estimate of your weekly leave pay, you can use Washington’s calculator.

How do I apply for benefits?

If your employer uses Cocoon, you can log into your Dashboard and we’ll guide you through the process. If not, you can head to Washington’s website to determine next steps (like providing written notice to your employer, getting your documents together, and actually submitting your claims forms).

Learn about other state leave laws

Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave and beyond—all in one interactive map.