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Update on state’s Paid Family & Medical Leave premiums

Update on Washington’s Paid Family & Medical Leave Premiums – Premiums, collected from employees and employers through quarterly reporting, fund Washington State’s Paid Leave program. By law, the state recalculates the Paid Leave premium rate annually in October. They adjust the premium rate based on premiums contributed and benefits paid during the previous year.

Starting Jan. 1, 2024

  • The total premium rate will decrease to 0.74%.
  • Employers will pay 28.57% of the total premium and employees will pay 71.43%.
  • Businesses classified by the Employment Security Department as having fewer than 50 employees for the 2024 calendar year are not required to pay the employer portion of the premium. However, employers must still collect the employee premium or pay employees’ premiums on their behalf.

Next steps for employers

  • Notify employees that premiums will start being collected at the new rate on Jan. 1, 2024. An updated employer toolkit, mandatory poster and paycheck insert are available in the Paid Leave Help Center here.
  • On Jan. 1, 2024, start collecting the new premium rate each pay period from employees’ total gross wages, not including tips. Once an employee meets the Social Security cap, employers need to stop collecting premiums, but continue to report their wages. The Social Security cap for the 2024 calendar year will increase to $168,600.
  • First quarter premiums using the new rate are due by the end of April 2024.
    Remember: employers cannot retroactively withhold premiums from employees.

Learn more on the ESD website

The ESD will have more updated resources available here for employers and employees before the end of the year, including:

  • an updated premium estimator
  • premium rate calculations
  • more reporting information for employers

If you have any questions, contact AGC’s Michele Willms.

(from Washington State Employment Security Department)

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