The Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave (DFML) published final regulations on June 18, 2019. The framework of the draft regulations remains intact and after a three-month delay in implementation to prepare for compliance, contributions under the Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave will begin October 1, 2019.

As reported in previous Sentinel Alerts, the MA PFML provides eligible employees with paid medical and family leave benefits effective January 1, 2021. Individuals will be entitled to up to 20 weeks of paid medical leave and 12 weeks of paid family leave per year, with a combined maximum amount of family and medical leave of 26 weeks per year. The benefit amount is calculated based on an individual’s earning and is capped at $850 per week.

To fund these benefits, employers are obligated to make payroll deductions beginning October 1, 2019. If you have an approved Private Plan, employer and employee contributions may be delayed until January 1, 2021. Various carriers are considering offering a Private Plan. Please contact your Sentinel Account Executive for further information.

Employers are responsible for remitting family and medical leave contributions to the MA Department of Family and Medical Leave on behalf of covered individuals. The contribution rate is 0.75% of gross wages up to the Social Security wage limit of $132,900. The medical leave contribution represents 0.62% of gross wages and the family leave contribution represents 0.13% of gross wages.

The Law dictates employer and employee contributions as follows: For employers with 25 or more employees, the employer is required to pay a minimum of 60% of the medical leave contribution only.  The remainder of the required contributions (100% of the family leave contribution and 40% of medical leave contribution) may be deducted from employees' wages. Employers with fewer than 25 covered individuals are not required to pay any of the employer’s share of the contributions, but still must deduct and remit payroll contributions on behalf of their employees.

Notice Requirements and Deadlines

September 30, 2019:

October 1, 2019:
  • The first quarter for payroll withholdings. Wage withholding and employer contributions are due 30 days following the conclusion of each quarter. Payments will be made through the MA Department of Revenue MassTaxConnect Program.  
January 1, 2021:
  • Covered individuals may be eligible for paid medical leave

If you have any questions, please contact us.