Massachusetts has adopted a paid family and medical leave program, which will be funded by a payroll tax that becomes effective July 1, 2019. Employees can begin taking paid family and medical leave under the program in 2021.

A summary of the program is below.

Which Employers Are Covered?

Employers with 1 or more employees.

Which Individuals Are Eligible for Leave?

Employees who meet financial eligibility requirements for unemployment insurance (earned at least $4,700 during the last four completed calendar quarters, and 30 times the weekly benefit amount they would be eligible to collect).

Which Life Events Qualify for Leave?

  • The birth, adoption or placement of a child
  • The need to care for a family member with a serious health condition or who is a covered servicemember
  • The employee’s own serious health condidition
  • A qualifying exigency stemming from a family member being on active duty

For How Long Can Leave Last?

  • Up to 12 weeks in a year for the birth, adoption or placement of a child, to care for a family member with a serious health condition, or because of a qualifying exigency stemming from a family member being on active duty
  • Up to 20 weeks in a year for the serious health condition of the employee
  • Up to 26 weeks to care for a family member who is a covered servicemember

If an employee elects to use leave for more than one life event, leave can last up to 26 weeks in a year at most.

Who Pays for the Paid Leave?

Both the employer and the employee. The leave program will be funded by a 0.63 percent payroll tax split between the employers and the employees that becomes effective July 1, 2019.

Additional requirements and exceptions apply. Click here to read the law.

When it comes to benefits like paid family leave, employers are offering more in order to stay competitive in today’s hiring landscape. Download the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Employee Benefits Survey results by clicking the image below to see which benefits your competition might be offering.

Download the SHRM Report

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