“Paid Family Leave” (PFL) refers to compensated time away from work for family caregiving needs, such as a new child or the illness of a family member. State-sponsored PFL initiatives are picking up momentum in many states. In 2019, Connecticut and Oregon joined the growing list of states that have enacted laws enabling certain employees under specific circumstances to receive compensation while on leave from their jobs. Several other states have similar bills pending.
As these new policies are designed by state legislatures, state agencies face the challenges of administering new programs. It is essential that the programs be operated efficiently to achieve long-term sustainability and desired outcomes. This paper explores how these programs work and key challenges states face in creating and effectively managing these programs.