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Accrued sick leave may be used to care for a legal spouse or registered domestic partner during pregnancy and childbirth disability. 12 workweeks of leave (unpaid or vacation) is available for care and bonding under FMLA.
County supervisors work with employees on a mutually agreeable transition plan back to full-time work.
Many County employees enjoy the flexibility of working an alternative work schedule to balance family and work life. Work with your supervisor to explore available options.
Use "flex time" for periodic personal matters as mutually agreed by your supervisor.
Whatcom County provides many breastfeeding resources and supports breastfeeding mothers at work by proving a private space to express and collect milk for infants during their first year of life.
At least three months prior to your anticipated leave, meet with your HR Representative to determine your leave plan. Your HR Rep will help you maximize your options with your available accruals. You will receive a calendar to map out your proposed leave plan. Your HR Rep will also review how you'll pay for any insurance premiums, voluntary deductions/contributions while on leave.
Review your proposed leave plan with your supervisor at least 30 days in advance, but the earlier, the better.
You are responsible for submitting weekly time sheets to reflect your choices about use of accruals and/or unpaid leave.
Unpaid leave may affect your retirement. The Department of Retirement Services (DRS) allows employees to buy back lost service credit for a period of time. For more information on recovering lost service credit, contact DRS at 800-547-6657.
Whatcom County complies with applicable Federal and State Family Leave Laws. No adverse employment action may be taken against any employee utilizing leave under these provisions.
|Law/Purpose||Amount of Leave||Eligibility|
|WA Paid Sick Leave|
Provides protected sick leave for employees and covered family members for certain covered reasons.
|One hour of paid sick leave for every 40 hours worked. Regular employees accrue more generous sick leave covered by their applicable Collective Bargaining Agreement or Unrepresented Resolution.||All Employees|
|WA Law Against |
Employers must provide same disability leave benefits to women who are pregnant or have recently given birth as they provide to any other employee.
|Reasonable accommodation (leave) determined by a doctor for a new mother during her period of disability. Generally, 6 weeks for normal delivery or 8 weeks for cesarean delivery but could also include disability prior to birth. This leave is in addition to any leave under FMLA. Available paid time off accruals or unpaid leave may be used.||Birth mothers|
|Family and Medical|
Leave Act (FMLA)
For a period of pregnancy incapacity, following birth, to care and bond with newborn, or following adoption or foster care of a child under 19.
|12 workweeks of job-protected leave with continuation of employer-paid benefits. Available paid time off accruals or unpaid leave may be used as allowed by policy.||Must have worked for 12 months and 1,250 hours in the 12 months prior to taking leave.|
|WA Family Care Act|
Use of paid sick leave or other paid time off to care for sick child, spouse, registered domestic partner, parent, parent-in-law or grandparent with a serious health condition.
|Available paid time off accruals may be used.||Any employee with paid leave accruals.|
|Domestic Violence Leave|
Use of reasonable leave to take care of legal/law enforcement needs, seek treatment, obtain services, relocate, or take other actions to increase safety from future incidents.
|Available paid time off accruals or unpaid leave may be used. Employers must maintain health insurance.||Victims and their family members who may offer help to the victim.|
|Military Family Leave |
Leave for any "qualifying exigency" arising from foreign deployment of employee's spouse, son, daughter, or parent with the Armed Forces, or to care for a servicemember with a serious injury or illness if the servicemember is an eligible family member.
|12 workweeks of job-protected leave during any 12-month period during family member deployment. 26 workweeks of job-protected leave during a single 12-month period to care for a covered servicemember with a serious injury or illness Available paid time off accruals or unpaid leave may be used as allowed by policy.||Must have worked for 12 months and 1,250 hours in the 12 months prior to taking leave.|
Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML)
|12 weeks of partial wage replacement. The exact benefit is determined by your wages and other factors.||Worked 820 hours in WA during the previous year|