New York Passes Paid Family Leave

The State Legislature is in the process of finishing the passage of the state budget on Friday and it will give New York State the strongest paid family leave program in the country    The final agreement between Governor Cuomo, the Assembly and the Senate differs very little from what the Assembly passed and what the Governor was supporting.  The Senate, in its one house bill, had passed a similar plan as well but they wanted to make some changes.   One was to extend from four weeks to six months the time a worker had to be employed in a position before being eligible for the program.

So, the final legislative details are:

Purpose:  To take paid leave to care for a newborn, seriously ill family member or for family care issues of military families to provide care

Eligible relatives to be cared for:   child, spouse, domestic partner, parent, grandchild, grandparent, sibling or parent of spouse or partner

Employer rules – All employers regardless of number of employees must offer the benefit and are required to hold the worker’s job for up to 12 weeks

Effective date:  January 1, 2018 will benefits phased in through 2021

Eligible:  All workers eligible who have been in a job for at least six months

Length of leave:  Will be phased up to 12 weeks

Wage replacement:  Will start at 50% of the average weekly wage of the employee and phase up to 67%.

Payroll deduction:  Will be paid completely by workers with a 70 cent weekly deduction rising to $1.47 weekly