June 28, 2022

Volume XII, Number 179


June 27, 2022

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Washington, D.C. Announces FY 22 Universal Paid Leave Amounts

Due to a surplus in the Universal Paid Leave Fund (the “Fund”), D.C. employees who are covered by the District’s Paid Family Leave (PFL”) program will soon be eligible for the maximum amount of paid family leave benefits permitted under the law.

As discussed in our previous Insight, starting in 2022, under the Universal Paid Leave Emergency Amendment Act of 2021 (“PLEAA”), the District’s Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) may modify the maximum duration of leave available under the PFL program annually depending upon the projected balance of the Universal Paid Leave Fund.  On March 1, 2022, the Acting CFO certified that the Fund has enough money to increase the potential maximum duration of qualifying paid leave available to D.C. employees as follows:

  • Up to 2 weeks for prenatal leave (as before);

  • Up to 12 weeks for medical leave (increased from 8 weeks);

  • Up to 12 weeks for parental leave (increased from 6 weeks);

  • Up to 12 weeks for family leave (increased from 6 weeks).

The PLEAA provides that once leave benefits are expanded to the maximum durations allowed, the CFO may also lower the employer contribution payroll tax rate so that employers do not overpay into the Fund. Given the Fund’s surplus, which currently stands at over $400 million, the Acting CFO certified reducing the current payroll tax rate from 0.62% to 0.26%, which is expected to save employers approximately $200 million over the next year.

The increase in paid leave benefits is currently scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2022; however, Mayor Muriel Bowser’s recently published 2023 budget proposal would delay implementation of the expansion of paid leave benefits (but not the reduction to the payroll tax rate) until October 1, 2022. The Council has yet to vote on the mayor’s 2023 budget proposal. We will continue to monitor the budget process and report further if the expansion of paid leave benefits will be delayed until October 1, 2022.

©2022 Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. All rights reserved.National Law Review, Volume XII, Number 98

About this Author

Nathaniel M. Glasser, Epstein Becker, Labor, Employment Attorney, Publishing

NATHANIEL M. GLASSER is a Member of the Firm in the Labor and Employment practice, in the Washington, DC, office of Epstein Becker Green. His practice focuses on the representation of leading companies and firms, including publishing and media companies, financial services institutions, and law firms, in all areas of labor and employment relations.

Mr. Glasser’s experience includes:

  • Defending clients in employment litigation, from single-plaintiff to class action disputes,...

Ann Knuckles Mahoney, Epstein Becker Green, employee handbook attorney

ANN KNUCKLES MAHONEY is an Associate in the Employment, Labor, and Workforce Management practice, in the New York office of Epstein Becker Green. Ms. Knuckles Mahoney:

  • Counsels employers on practices and procedures, such as employee handbooks and stand-alone policies

  • Advises employers on Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) wage and hour laws and the classification of workers

  • Assists in defending clients in labor and employment-related litigation in a...

Eric I. Emanuelson, Jr. Law Clerk New York
Law Clerk

ERIC I. EMANUELSON, JR.,* is a Law Clerk – Admission Pending – in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the New York office of Epstein Becker Green. He will be focusing his practice on disability laws, employment litigation, and employment training, practices, and procedures.

Prior to joining Epstein Becker Green, Mr. Emanuelson worked as a Legal Intern at the General Counsel’s Office of the largest labor union representing federal government employees. He also served as a Legislative Aide to Connecticut State Senator Edward Meyer.


Catherine Kang Lawyer Epstein Becker Green

Attorney Catherine Kang works diligently to support the employment and labor law needs of employers across various industries. She helps counsel clients on compliance with regulatory trends and employment laws, and reviews and updates employee handbooks, policies, and procedures. Catherine also assists in representing management in employment-related litigation.