Skip to main content

e-Alert: The Department of Labor Issues a Request for Information on Paid Family and Medical Leave

By July 28, 2020No Comments


For the past few months, COVID-19 has dominated the national conversation about labor law, eclipsing many other important issues facing employers and their employees. Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor brought some attention back to one such issue, Paid Family and Medical Leave. The DOL has issued a Request for Information (RIF) seeking information on current paid leave programs and how these programs, or the lack thereof, have impacted employees and their families.


On July 15th, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a Request for Information (RFI) regarding Paid Family and Medical Leave programs, whether company offered or at the state level. Though the RFI was specifically issued by the Women’s Bureau within the DOL, all members of the public, employers, employees, and researchers are invited to submit comments regarding the positives and negatives of existing PFML programs. This information will be used to help develop and report on promising paid leave practices across the country and could pave the way for future PFML programs at the state or even federal level.

In general, the DOL is seeking to understand:

  • The benefits of paid leave, the costs of paid leave, and the measurement of costs and benefits.
  • The beneficiaries of paid leave and the bearer of the costs.
  • The unique needs of workers and employers in regard to paid time off for care obligations.
  • The features of the existing public (e.g., state-administered) and private (employer-provided) programs that work well, reasons those features work well, and features and provisions that make a paid leave program successful for all stakeholders.
  • The features of the existing public and private programs that do not work well or are burdensome, the reasons why, and any features and provisions that present challenges for stakeholders.
  • Answers to the following questions:
    • Are there barriers to implementing or improving paid leave?
    • Are there regulatory barriers to providing paid leave?
    • What could be done to improve existing programs, which include state and employer-sponsored paid options?
    • What are the impediments, costs and otherwise, faced in implementing those improvements?
  • The challenges of balancing costs and benefits with paid leave and the differences in costs and benefits among types and sizes of employers, including small businesses.

Interested parties can find instructions for submitting comments using the RFI link above or at The deadline for submitting comments is September 14th, 2020.

Employers Next Steps

  • Employers across the country with information to share regarding PFML programs should follow the links provided above in order to do so.
  • Employers may also wish to make this information available to their employees to give them the opportunity to submit comments as well.

The People Simplifying HR

For almost twenty years, HR Knowledge has made it our mission to demystify the complex and daunting process of HR management. We do more than just provide the level of service and technology you’d expect from an industry leader. We combine an unparalleled passion for service with our decades of HR, payroll, and benefits experience to provide our clients with personalized and actionable advice that is second—to—none. From managed payroll to employee benefits to HR support, we can help your organization thrive, grow, and reduce operating costs — no matter what industry you serve. Whether you’re interested in our Full-Service solution or just need your employee handbook written, HR Knowledge can help you minimize risk while staying on top of compliance regulations. The bottom line? We’re not just another cloud-based technology company that also does HR, #WeAreHR. Get the scoop on how we can help you simplify HR.

This content is provided with the understanding that HR Knowledge is not rendering legal advice. While every effort is made to provide current information, the law changes regularly and laws may vary depending on the state or municipality. The material is made available for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal advice or your professional judgment. You should review applicable laws in your jurisdiction and consult experienced counsel for legal advice. If you have any questions regarding this content, please contact HR Knowledge at 508.339.1300 or email us.