On September 3, 2023, the window for Paid Leave Oregon insurance claims is scheduled to open. The Oregon Employment Department continues to work diligently to provide guidance and information for employers and employees to consider. Earlier this week an update was provided by the Oregon Employment Department. The highlights are below.
Benefit Amounts for July 2023- June 2024
Each year the Oregon Employment Department has responsibility to review the minimum and maximum weekly benefits amounts. These calculations are based on Oregon’s State Average Weekly Wage and are effective from July 1 through June 30 of the following year. The State Average Weekly Wage increased from $1,224.82 to $1,269.69. For Paid Leave Oregon, the minimum weekly benefit amount is 5% of the State Average Weekly Wage, and the maximum is 120%. This translates to a new minimum weekly benefit amount of $63.48 and the maximum weekly benefit amount is $1,523.63. For additional information about the calculation of an employee’s benefit please review the Employee Guidebook (pages 12-16).
Oregon Employment Department has provided a guide to the important insurance coverage for employees. As with any new program there is a substantial number of questions, and this guide provides answers to those things employees need to know.
The topics covered in the guidebook are:
- About this guide
- About Paid Leave Oregon
- Covered employees
- Employer obligations
- Equivalent plans
- Covered types of leave
- Paid Leave Oregon Benefits (leave amount, length of leave, benefits amount, job protection, difference from other leaves)
- Benefit application
- Receiving benefits
- Paying taxes on benefits
- Working while on leave
- How to change your information
- Your rights (appeal and complaints)
- Contact information
We believe it is important for employers to read the information being shared as you are likely the first place employees will go for answers. This guide also directs employees to their employer for certain information that will be needed to file a claim, including the employee’s date of hire and usual work schedule per week.
Also, don’t forget your organization needs an internal policy to support the availability, use, and notification requirements of this employee benefit. We have developed a Policy Pack with background, policy sample, form sample, and other considerations. Find it here.
Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA changes)
In our alert on June 16, 2023, we shared information about changes to the benefit year which would allow better alignment between PLO and OFLA. There was as error in the date. Effective immediately, organizations (after providing a 60-day notice) can change the benefit year to meet the PLO language (the 52 weeks beginning on the Sunday immediately preceding the leave) or it can be maintained as currently identified in your policies. However, by July 1, 2024, all organizations must change their benefit year to align with PLO. We apologize for the error.
We have updated our Paid Leave Oregon Policy Pack on our website. If you previously purchased the Policy Pack (or downloaded it as an Advantage Plan client), you should have received a separate email from us earlier today with the updated Policy Pack attached.