Paid Family Leave (PFL) impacts any private organization, with more than one employee, that is currently covered under the existing NY Disability Benefits Law (DBL). It is a new state sponsored program that allows eligible employees paid time off:
Although not finalized yet, the current regulation defines family members as children, spouses, parents, grandparents, grandchildren and domestic partners. PFL will be phased in beginning January 1, 2018. Initially, employees can take up to eight weeks leave, with 50% of their pay (up to the statewide average weekly wage).
The premium rate for Paid Family Leave Benefits will be 0.126% of an employee's weekly wage, up to and not exceeding the statewide average weekly wage of $1,305.92.
Who is an eligible employee?
A full time employee who has worked for 26+ consecutive weeks or a part time employee who has worked for 175+ days.
How is PFL different from FMLA?
The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law requiring unpaid leave to be provided by employers with 50+ employees. PFL is a state law that requires paid leave for all private-sector employees.
Do I, as an employer, have to pay for these benefits?
No. PFL benefits are funded by employee contributions through payroll deductions.
How much leave can my employee take and how much of their pay will they receive?
The amount of leave and the amount of pay that the employee can receive increases over time as follows:
What are my main responsibilities as an employer?
Employers are responsible for:
Can my employee also take PTO or other sick leave benefits to enable them to maintain 100% of their salary while on leave?
While PFL cannot be used concurrently with NYS DBL, the employer can choose to allow employees to take vacation, sick, or other benefits while on leave, but may not require them to do so.
Can PFL be taken intermittently?
Yes, and successive periods of family leave caused by the same or a related injury or illness count as a single period if separated by less than 3 months.
Is there a "waiting period" before paid benefits are payable?
No. Unlike typical disability payments, which have waiting or elimination periods, benefits are payable on the first full day family leave is required.
Are there any employer notice requirements?
Yes. Employers will be required to update their employee handbooks to include PFL. They will also be required to post notice of employee rights under PFL in the prescribed form. In addition, employers must give a written statement of rights to the employee within 5 business days of receiving notice that the employee’s absence of 7 consecutive days is due to family leave.