MA Department of Family and Medical Leave Launches Website

By Richard S. Loftus   November 21, 2018

WHAT’S NEW?

The brand-new Department of Family and Medical Leave (“Department”) has recently gone live with its website. The site contains some basic information about the new Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave law, which was passed by the state Legislature earlier this year. The site also contains FAQs for both employers and employees.

The employer FAQ can be found here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/paid-family-medical-leave-for-employers-faq

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE EMPLOYER FAQ

Some interesting highlights from the employer FAQ include:

• Businesses with fewer than 25 employees in Massachusetts must remit contributions to the Department on behalf of their employees, but do not need to pay the employer’s share on their behalf.

• The total contribution rate is 0.63% of the first $128,400 of an individual’s annual earnings. Each year, the Department will make a determination as to how to apportion the 0.63% contribution rate between medical and family leave contributions. The first such apportionment will be published prior to July 1, 2019. This means the amount a business is able to require its employees to contribute may vary from year-to-year.

• Employers may require employees to pay up to 40% of the total medical leave contribution required for an individual, and up to 100% of the total family leave contribution required for an individual.

• Contributions to Paid Family Medical Leave will begin on July 1, 2019, but benefits will not be available until January 1, 2021.

• If a business has 25 or more workers in total, and if the business issues 1099s to more than 50% of its workforce, then the independent contractors are treated as “covered individuals” under the law, and the business must remit those workers’ share of contributions to the Department, as well as the employer’s share, just as the employer would do for its employees.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

• If you have questions or concerns about the new Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave law, please contact Rich Loftus or any other member of the HRW team.

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