Paid Family and Medical Leave Act Deadlines

As many TAM members have heard, Massachusetts has a new Paid Family and Medical Law (PFML) that has upcoming deadlines to be aware of. The new program is being administered by the Department of Family and Medical Leave (Department). Please take note of the following key facts.

Required Withholding Starts October 1
The start date for required PFML contributions is October 1, 2019. On that date, employers must begin withholding PFML contributions from employee qualifying earnings. Employers will be responsible for remitting employee and (if applicable) employer contributions for the October 1 to December 31 quarter through MassTaxConnect by January 31, 2020.

Contribution Rate Change 
The PFML law requires that the Department adjust the contribution rate to offset the shorter period for collections that will result from the three month delay. As a result, the total contribution rate has been adjusted from 0.63% to 0.75% of employee qualifying earnings. This adjustment will ensure that full funding will be in place for the commencement of benefit payments in January 2021.

Timeline for Required Employee Notices 
Employers have until September 30, 2019, to notify all covered individuals of their rights and obligations under PFML. For information about workplace posters and notice documents for employees, visit the program website.

Timeline Extended for Exemption Applications
Employers that offer paid leave benefits that are at least as generous as those required under the PFML law may apply to the Department for an exemption from making contributions. Employers will have until December 20, 2019, to apply for an exemption that will excuse them from the obligation to remit contributions for the full period commencing with the October 1 start date.

A checklist of required actions may be found online right here. For other information about this new program, visit the program’s website.