Oregon Sick Child Leave Clarifications

On September 11, 2020, BOLI issued a Permanent Administrative Order amending OAR 839-009-0230 to expand the purposes for taking OFLA Sick Child Leave to include: absence to care for an employee’s child whose school or child care provider has been closed in conjunction with a statewide public health emergency declared by a public health official.

Concurrently, BOLI issued a Temporary Rule amending the definitions applicable to OFLA Sick Child Leave as follows:

For the purpose of sick child leave during a statewide public health emergency declared by a public health official “Child Care Provider” means a place of care or person who cares for a child:

  • A person who cares for a child includes but is not limited to individuals paid to provide child care, for example nannies, au pairs, and babysitters or individuals who provide child care at no cost and without a license on a regular basis, for example, grandparents, aunts, uncles, or neighbors.
  • Place of care is a physical location in which care is provided for a child including but not limited to day care facilities, preschools, before and after school care programs, schools, homes, summer camps, summer enrichment programs, and respite care programs. The physical location does not have to be solely dedicated to such care.

“Closure” for the purpose of sick child leave during a statewide public health emergency declared by a public health official means a closure that is ongoing, intermittent, or recurring and restricts physical access to the child’s school or child care provider.

“Intermittent leave” means leave taken in multiple blocks of time and/or requiring an altered or reduced work schedule including but not limited to sick child leave taken requiring an altered or reduced work schedule because the intermittent or recurring closure of a child’s school or child care provider due to a statewide public health emergency declared by a public health official.

The Temporary Rule also provides the following with respect to documentation of Sick Child Leave:

For the need for sick child leave due to the closure of a child’s school or child care provider, an employer may request verification of the need for sick child leave due to the closure of the child’s school or child care provider in conjunction with a statewide public health emergency declared by a public health official. Verification may include:

  • The name of the child being cared for;
  • The name of the school or child care provider that has closed or become unavailable; and
  • A statement from the employee that no other family member of the child is willing and able to care for the child.
  • With the care of a child older than 14, a statement that special circumstances exist requiring the employee to provide care to the child during daylight hours.

A final reminder, OFLA Sick Child Leave runs concurrently with FFCRA expanded FMLA leave (meaning that an employee does not get 24 months of leave to care for a child whose school or place of care is closed for Covid-19 related reasons).

The Rule and Temporary Rule are here:

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