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Employers required to provide bone marrow and organ donation leave

April 4, 2016

On April 1, 2015, Governor Scott Walker signed into law a bill that requires employers to provide up to 6 weeks of job-protected, unpaid leave to employees in a 12-month period for the purpose of donating bone marrow or an organ. 2015 Senate Bill 517 passed both the Senate and the Assembly with broad bi-partisan support.

Under the new law:

  • Employers will be required to provide many of the same job protections to employees who take leave for bone marrow or organ donation as those provided to employees taking other Family and Medical Leave Act leaves of absence.
  • Employees seeking to take leave must provide their employers with advance notice of the bone marrow or organ donation and must make a reasonable effort to schedule the donation so that it does not “unduly disrupt the operations of the employer, subject to the approval of the health care provider or the bone marrow or organ donee.”
  • Employers may request certification of the donee’s need for the donation and confirmation that the employee is eligible and has agreed to serve as the donor.

Employers should be prepared to update their handbooks to incorporate a bone marrow and organ donation leave policy.

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