The New York State Worker’s Compensation Board issued five proposed regulations on May 24, 2017, for organizations to incorporate, when implementing the New York Paid Family Leave requirements on January 1, 2018. The initial regulations were published on February 22, 2017 and included a comment period. The new regulations released on May 24, 2017 will have a 30-day comment period.
Below are 5 proposed regulation changes:
- An employee using intermittent leave must give the employer separate notice each day of use of the Paid Family Leave. Previous language stated that employees only needed to provide notice once to employers when using intermittent leave, which was inconsistent with the FMLA rules.
- Collective bargaining language must provide benefits as favorable as the Paid Family Leave law, including the length of leave and amount of pay. This section is still evolving and negotiated language can include the union responsibility for time records and pay deductions. This has not been finalized and more changes will come to this section.
- Paid Family Leave language has been clarified that the eligibility of employees working 20-hours or more per week is measured based on the number of weeks in employment, which must be at least 26-weeks. Employees who work less than 20-hours per week is measured in days, which must be at least 175 working days.
- The Worker’s Compensation Board clarified the July 1, 2017 deductions language. The employer can start taking payroll deductions on July 1, 2017, but cannot take deductions more than the maximum weekly contribution to retroactively cover the cost of providing Paid Family Leave. The reason for early deductions is to offset the cost of acquiring the mandated insurance policy.
- The Worker’s Compensation Board issued additional guidance on accrued leave running concurrently with Paid Family Leave. The complexity of this language and requirements is related to accrued leave is still being drafted. Further clarification is needed from the Board on the concurrent and accrued requirements, which include; FMLA, worker’s comp, and disability. More updates to come on this proposed language.
Now is the time to begin reviewing, drafting, updating and revising policies and procedures related to FMLA and Paid Family Leave. January 1, 2018 is only six short months away. Continue to monitor for updates and changes to the proposed language. If you are confused, ask questions and do not assume. This law is very complex, it continues to change as concerns arise and the implementation will impact most organizations throughout New York State.
– Matthew Burr, HR Consultant
[i] Guardian PPT Training Slides