HR Operations

Laws and UW policies related to FMLA

Last updated: September 22, 2023

This page applies to all staff, academic personnel, and student employees.

There are several federal and state laws that apply to family and medical leave. Additionally, the University has several related policies.

Talk with your HR leave specialist if you have questions about any of these laws or policies.


Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
This federal law offers you a limited amount of unpaid, job-protected leave for certain family and medical reasons.

Washington Paid Family & Medical Leave (PFML)
This state law is available when employees need time off to care for themselves or a family member. There are three main types of paid leave: medical leave, family leave, and military family leave.

Washington Family Care Act (FCA)
This state law allows employees to use their paid leave to take time off from work to care for a family member with a serious health condition or to care for the employee’s child who requires medical treatment or supervision.

Washington Military Family Leave Act (MFLA)
If you are a spouse or registered domestic partner of a military service member, you may take up to 15 days of leave prior to deployment or when your spouse is on leave during a deployment. Leave under this state law is unpaid unless you use accrued paid leave.

To be eligible for MFLA leave, you need to work at least 20 hours per week on average. MFLA and FMLA may run at the same time.

University policies

Disability Leave Policy
This policy allows a limited amount of unpaid leave for reasons related to an employee’s own medical condition that prevents the employee from performing their essential job functions.

Leave Policy for Classified Non-Union Staff (APS 43.15)
This policy outlines time off and leave of absence options for classified non-union staff, including sick, vacation, and parental leaves and unpaid time off.

Leave Related to Active Military Duty (APS 45.4)
The policy on military duty includes provisions related to military family leave.

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Coverage for University Employees (APS 45.5)
This policy describes how the University complies with the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.

State of Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave Program (APS 45.6)
This policy describes how the University complies with and implements the state Paid Family and Medical Leave program.

Policy on Reasonable Accommodation of Employees with Disabilities (APS 46.5)
This policy describes the process for requesting reasonable accommodation for a disability.