Domestic Violence Leave

Domestic Violence Leave

— for victims and their family members

A new Domestic Violence Leave law (RCW 49.76) passed by the 2008 Legislature allows victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking to take reasonable leave from work — paid or unpaid — to take care of legal or law enforcement needs and obtain health care. Family members of a victim may also take reasonable leave to help the victim obtain treatment or seek help.

Features of the new law:
  • Victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking may take reasonable leave from work for legal or law-enforcement assistance, medical treatment, or counseling.
  • Family members may also take reasonable leave to help a victim obtain needed treatment or services.
  • Leave is with or without pay.
  • Employees may use sick leave or other paid time off, compensatory time, or unpaid leave time.
  • "Family member" includes a child, spouse, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent or person with whom the employee is dating.
  • All employers, public or private, are covered, regardless of size.
Get more detailed information about this new law in this helpful fact sheet:

Acrobat PDF file Domestic Violence Leave for Victims and Family Members (112 KB PDF)


For related information:
Acrobat PDF file Table of Protected Leave Laws (235 KB PDF)

For questions about any of Washington's leave laws, contact the Employment Standards program at your local L&I office or the central office in Tumwater at 360-902-5316.

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