Still Time to Comment on WA Paid Sick Leave Rules

Rulemaking for enforcement of the new law is under way and includes opportunities for public comment at Nov. 8 and 9 public hearings. The deadline for public comments is Nov. 17.

With mandatory paid sick leave starting in Washington state on Jan. 1, 2018, the Department of Labor & Industries released new state requirements on how the paid sick leave law will be implemented. "This is a big change, so we made sure people had every chance to weigh in on the rules and let us know the potential impacts," said L&I Assistant Director of Fraud Prevention & Labor Standards Elizabeth Smith. "Now that they're final, the next step is to make sure that employers know what's required so they can be ready when the new law takes effect on January 1."

There is still an opportunity to comment on the rules, which will address procedures for employers to notify their employees, recordkeeping and reporting requirements regarding paid sick leave, and how to protect employees from retaliation for the lawful use of paid sick leave. L&I is developing the rules in two phases: 1) employer requirements and employee rights and 2) enforcement of the new law. Opportunities for public comment on employer requirements and employee rights ended Sept. 1, but rulemaking for enforcement of the new law is under way and includes opportunities for public comment at two public hearings -- Nov. 8, starting at 10 a.m. at the Spokane Center Place Auditorium, and also Nov. 9 at 10 a.m. at the agency's Tumwater Auditorium.

The deadline for public comments is Nov. 17.

Along with mandatory paid sick leave, voter-passed Initiative 1433 also increases the state minimum wage annually during the next three years. In 2018, the state minimum wage will rise to $11.50 an hour.

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