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Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Deadlines Extended

With the original July 1, 2019 deadline for numerous provisions of the Commonwealth’s Paid Family and Medical Leave (“PFML”) legislation approaching in mere weeks, Massachusetts lawmakers have now issued a much-welcomed enforcement extension. The extensions comes as employers in the Commonwealth worked to comply with the new law.  The amended legislation, announced earlier this week and signed into law on June 13, provides as follows:

  • Required withholding now begins on October 1, 2019, rather than July 1. When the PFML takes effect, employers will be required to withhold PFML contributions for covered individuals, and must remit their contributions through MassTaxConnect by January 31, 2020. The extension gives Massachusetts employers more time to count their workforce, determine who is a covered individuals, and prepare to make the requisite withholdings. Notably, as a result of the extension, the total combined contribution rate has increased from 0.63% to 0.75% of employee qualified earnings. This rate, which is subject to change year to year, accounts for the three month delay in collections.

  • The date by which Massachusetts employers must notify their workers of the PFML has also been extended, from July 1 to September 30, 2019. By September 30, employers are required to notify those individuals covered by the PFML of their rights under the law, how to file a claim, and other key details, as discussed further here.

  • Those employers which already offer paid leave benefits may now have until December 20, 2019 to apply for an exemption from PFML requirements.

  • Finally, the Department of Family and Medical Leave announced that final regulations will be posted on Monday, June 17, 2019, and will be effective July 1. A discussion of the draft regulations is available here.

© 2020 Proskauer Rose LLP. National Law Review, Volume IX, Number 165


About this Author

Mark W Batten, Labor & Employment Attorney, Proskauer Law Firm

Mark Batten is a Partner in the Labor & Employment Law Department and co-head of the Class/Collective Action Group, resident in the Boston office.

Mark represents employers nationwide at all stages of complex employment litigation, including class and collective actions on wage and hour matters and discrimination claims. Ranked by Chambers USA, Mark is hailed as “a fabulous lawyer, handling interesting and complex cases.” Clients “highly recommend him to anyone seeking litigation counsel in the Boston area,” as well as note “he is...

Samantha L. Regenbogen, Labor & Employment, Proskauer Law Firm

Samantha Regenbogen is a law clerk in the Labor & Employment Department. 

Samantha was a summer associate in Proskauer's New York Office, and was involved in drafting briefs and memorandums for both wage and hour class actions and single-plaintiff discrimination cases. Before joining Proskauer, Samantha was an intern with the Enforcement Unit of the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, where she investigated complaints and drafted dispositions.

During her time at Harvard Law School, Samantha served as a board member of the Women's Law Association and was a cast member and artistic director of the HLS Parody.

Thomas Fiascone Labor Employment Attorney

Thomas Fiascone is an associate in the Labor & Employment Law Department.

Tom earned his J.D. from Boston College Law School, where he was a senior editor and staff writer on the Boston College Law Review. During law school, Tom served as a judicial intern in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts and was a tutor in BC Law’s Academic Success Program.

Prior to law school, Tom was a paralegal in Proskauer’s Labor and Employment Law Department.