Seyfarth Synopsis: Yesterday, the Massachusetts Governor, Senate President and House Speaker issued a joint statement confirming that they have agreed to adopt a 3-month delay to the start of required contributions under the Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) Law and to make technical changes to the statute to help improve program design.

The Legislature will need to advance a bill to effectuate these amendments to the statute. At this point, we know that the bill will provide for a 3-month delay to the July 1st start date of required contributions to the PFML program. The bill will also adopt technical changes to clarify program design.

We do not yet know whether the Department of Family and Medical Leave (DFML) will delay the June 30th deadline for the mandatory notices to be distributed to employees and covered contract workers. Stay tuned on that issue.

It appears that the contribution rate will increase from 0.63% to 0.75% to make up for the 3 months of lost contributions, while the January 1, 2021 and July 1, 2021 effective dates for the commencement of leave benefits will remain the same.

The other proposed technical amendments would provide clarity on issues such as intermittent leave and the definition of "serious health condition." The clarifying amendments will also align core principles of the Massachusetts PFML Law with the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

The Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM), the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and numerous supporters played an integral role in leading the push for this delay. We will keep you posted on any developments.

For our prior reports on the PFML Law and the proposed regulations, you may refer to any of our prior alerts below:

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