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Breaking News: Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Law – Workforce Notice Requirements and Private Plan Exemptions Deadlines Extended

** Please note that this post has been superseded, all or in part, by more recent updates provided here and here **

On May 1, 2019, the Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave (the “Department”) issued guidance (the “May 1 Guidance”) extending two key deadlines applicable to the Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Law (MAPMFL).

Employee Notice Deadline Extended to June 30, 2019

The deadline for employers to provide the MAPFML notice to its workforce has been extended from May 31 to June 30, 2019.  As a reminder, employers and covered business entities must notify their workforces of MAPFML and obtain an acknowledgment of receipt of notice or a statement indicating the employee’s or 1099-MISC worker’s refusal to acknowledge the notice (note, this acknowledgement can be obtained in electronic form). Moving forward, employers and covered business entities must provide notice to employees within 30 days of the start of employment and upon entering into a contract for services with a 1099-MISC worker.  Sample notices and translations issued by the Department can be found here.
Exemption Request Deadline for Q1 2019 Extended to September 30, 2019

Employers who seek to satisfy MAPFL requirements through a private plan must meet several substantive and procedural requirements, including filing for an exemption with the Department.  The May 1 Guidance extends the exemption application deadline for Quarter 1, 2019 (i.e. July 1 to September 30, 2019) from June 30 to September 20.  If an application is made but ultimately not approved, the employer will remain responsible for the Q1 2019 payments.  For subsequent quarters, the Department will continue to accept applications on a rolling basis but applications must be approved prospectively in the quarter prior to the quarter in which they go into effect.  Private plan exemptions are valid for one year and may be renewed annually.

For More Information

For an in-depth discussion of the requirements of MAPFML and draft regulations, please see our earlier posts (linked here and here). We will continue to keep you informed of the MAPFML as it develops. 

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Authors

Patricia A. Moran

Of Counsel

Patricia A. Moran is an experienced employee benefits attorney at Mintz. She advises clients on a variety of employee benefit plan matters. Patricia has also worked with the US Department of Labor Employee Benefits Security Administration, where she investigated employers on ERISA compliance.

Emma Follansbee

Associate

Emma Follansbee is a Mintz attorney who counsels clients on employment and labor matters, including compliance with federal, state, and local laws, disciplinary investigations, and litigation. She was a Summer Associate at Mintz in 2016. Before law school, she was a Project Analyst at Mintz.