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New State Paid Family and Medical Leave Premiums Begin in 2019

December 14, 2018

The following communication was sent by Cheryl Cameron, Vice Provost for Academic Personnel, and Mindy Kornberg, Vice President of UW Human Resources, to all UW employees on December 14, 2018.

Dear UW employees,

Washington is the fifth state in the nation to enact a paid family and medical leave benefits program in the form of partial wage replacement to workers. Paid Family and Medical Leave is a mandatory statewide insurance program funded by premiums paid by employees and employers and will be administered by the Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD).

Beginning in 2020, employees will be able to use this new benefit, which generally allows up to 12 weeks of paid leave per year when they welcome a new child into their family, are struck by a serious illness or injury, need to take care of a seriously ill family member, or face certain military-connected events. In order to fund this new benefit, both the University and employees will contribute to premiums beginning in 2019.

State law sets the premium at 0.4 percent of gross wages and is capped at the Social Security cap, which is $132,900 in 2019. This premium is split by the employee and the employer. Consistent with other state agencies, the UW employee share of the premium will be 63 percent, with the UW contributing the remainder. For example, for an employee making $50,000 annually, the total annual premium paid by the employee is $126.67, or $5.28 per paycheck.

According to state law, most employees will see the deductions in paychecks beginning in January 2019. The exception is employees covered under collective bargaining agreements that expire June 30, 2019.

Deductions Reflected on Paycheck 1/10/19

  • Classified Non-union Staff and Non-represented Temporary Hourly Staff
  • Professional Staff
  • Faculty, librarians and other academic personnel (except for UWHA union members)
  • Students
  • ICA contract coaches
  • Hall Health Physicians
  • AFT – Extension Lecturers
  • UAW Graduate Students

Deductions Reflected on Paycheck 7/10/19

  • Inlandboatmen’s Union
  • SEIU 925*
  • WFSE*
  • WFSE PM
  • SEIU 1199*
  • SEIU 1199 Research/HH
  • Teamsters 117
  • Teamsters 117 Print Craft
  • UWHA – Medical Residents
  • WSNA

*Temporary employees who have not met the 350-hour threshold to be covered by the terms of their collective bargaining agreement will contribute effective the January 10, 2019, paycheck and until they have met the 350-hour threshold.

For more information, visit https://paidleave.wa.gov. The state’s ESD is still in the process of developing the rules that will govern how employees are able to use this benefit beginning in 2020. More information will be shared as it is available related to benefits usage and how Paid Family and Medical Leave provisions intersect with other existing federal, state and UW policies.

Thank you,

Cheryl A. Cameron
Vice Provost for Academic Personnel
Virginia and Prentice Bloedel University Professor
Professor, Oral Health Sciences, School of Dentistry

Mindy Kornberg, J.D.
Vice President
UW Human Resources