Champagne - smallBreak out those champagne glasses and confetti! Along with a fresh start to the year, January brings with it new leave laws:

Massachusetts Sick and Safe Leave Safe Harbor Expires: When Massachusetts’ paid sick and safe leave law went into effect on July 1, 2015, it contained some special transition year provisions, including a “safe harbor” provision that expires on December 31, 2015. Under the safe harbor, employers who had an existing PTO or sick leave policies that met certain requirements were compliant with the new law. As of January 1, 2016, all employers operating under the safe harbor provision must adjust their policies providing paid time off/paid sick leave to conform to the law.

Oregon Sick and Safe leave: Oregon’s Sick and Safe leave law goes into effect January 1. Be sure to review the Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (“BOLI”) finalized regulations for the new law.

Oregon Mandate for Health Insurance during Oregon Family Leave (OFLA): Oregon’s House Bill 2600 becomes effective January 1, requiring employers to maintain employee health insurance benefits during OFLA leave, under the same conditions as if the employee were not on leave. BOLI has issued amended regulations to conform to the new law.

Pittsburgh Paid Sick and Safe Leave Law Struck Down: In a decision that goes against the recent tide of local paid sick and safe leave laws, in late December, an Allegheny County, PA judge struck down Pittsburgh’s law set to go into effect in early 2016. The law would have mandated paid sick and safe leave for employees who work in Pittsburgh.  The tug-of-war between states and municipalities has been ongoing for years – and no clear winner has emerged.

California Family School Partnership Law Expanded: Effective January 1, this law expands protections to an employee who is a stepparent, foster parent, or who stands in loco parentis to the child. It also adds as new leave reasons, including time used to find, enroll, or reenroll a child in a school or with a child care provider, and time needed to address a child care provider emergency or school emergency.

California Kin Care Law Expanded: Effective January 1, grandparents, grandchildren, and siblings are now included as covered relationships under this law. Additionally, the amendment expands leave reasons to include the diagnosis, care, or treatment for an existing health condition, or for preventive care and certain absences resulting from domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking as set forth in California’s Paid Sick and Safe Leave law

Oregon Leave for Victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Stalking, or Harassment Amended: Effective January 1, employees who take leave for domestic violence, harassment, sexual assault or stalking pursuant to the Oregon Victims of Certain Crimes Leave Act (OVCCLA) can use any accrued sick leave or personal business leave, in addition to other permitted paid leave time.

Did you know that our signature LeaveAdvisor product not only provides comprehensive guidance on existing laws (including municipal sick leave ordinances), but also on pending laws that impact leave of absence as well? For more information, please feel free to contact us at 800-347-7443.