The Department of Family and Medical Leave has extended two important deadlines for the upcoming roll-out of paid family and medical leave. 

Notice Requirements: Employers now have until June 30, 2019 to notify their employees and independent contractors of their rights and obligations under the new law.  If you have not already done so, we recommend preparing your notice as soon as possible.

Private Plan Exemption: The DFML also extended the deadline to apply for private plan exemptions to September 20, 2019.  Although PFML contributions begin July 1, 2019, employers can hold off remitting contributions for PFML while their application is pending.  However, if the application is not approved, employers will have to remit the full contribution, backdated to July 1. 

Applications for private plan exemptions are available now, and the DFML estimates that the approval process will take 2-3 days. 

If you are interested in applying for a private plan exemption, we recommend working with your benefits provider now to ensure you have adequate coverage and applying for an exemption prior to July 1, 2019 if possible.

As a reminder, employers can apply for a private plan exemption for family leave, medical leave, or both.  Many short-term and long-term disability plans already meet the requirements for medical leave, although this coverage must be extended to cover part-time and temporary workers.  However, it is much more difficult to find a private plan to cover family leave, particularly leave to care for a sick family member.  You can review the criteria that a private plan must meet on the DFML’s website.

As always, if you have any questions about PFML, do not hesitate to reach out at any time.