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Massachusetts Adopts Paid Family and Medical Leave Program

Law Requires Employer Contributions

Massachusetts has adopted a paid family and medical leave program, which will be funded by a payroll tax that becomes effective July 1, 2019. Employees can begin taking paid family and medical leave under the program in 2021. A summary of the program is below.

Which employers are covered?   Employers with 1 or more employees
Which individuals are eligible for leave? Employees who meet financial eligibility requirements for unemployment insurance (earned at least $4,700 during the last 4 completed calendar quarters, and 30 times the weekly benefit amount they would be eligible to collect)
Which life events qualify for leave?
  • The birth of a child;
  • The need to care for a family member with a serious health condition; and
  • The employee’s own serious health condition.
For how long can leave last?
  • Up to 12 weeks in a year for the birth of a child or to care for a family member with a serious health condition.
  • Up to 20 weeks in a year for the serious health condition of the employee.
  • If an employee elects to use leave for more than one life event, 26 weeks in a year at most.
Who pays for the paid leave? Both the employer and the employee. The leave program will be funded by a 0.63% payroll tax split between employers and employees that becomes effective July 1, 2019.

Additional requirements and exceptions apply. Click here to read the law.

Our Massachusetts Family and Medical Leave page features information on additional Massachusetts leave laws.