Employers Need Three-Month Extension of Paid Family and Medical Leave Program

| Posted On May 30, 2019 | By:

Several large business organizations including Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM), the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce which represents thousands of employers statewide, and advocates who negotiated a compromised version of the paid family and medical leave program last year, recently requested a three-month postponement of the new law that goes into effect July 1, 2019. The call for a delay from politically diverse groups reflects growing concern that the marketplace, employers, and their workers are not adequately prepared for the sweeping new benefits program.

A letter dated May 20, 2019 and addressed to Governor Charlie Baker, House Speaker Robert DeLeo, and Senate President Karen Spilka read in part, “In the course of our work together, we have identified the need for a three-month extension of the July 1, 2019 deadline for approval of employers’ private paid family and medical leave plans and the commencement of the required plan contributions.”

We agree that the requested extension will not impact any of the benefits or the timing for eligibility of benefits under the new law but would instead allow additional time to comply with the landmark legislation enacted last session.

As a large employer in Massachusetts, Atrius Health strongly supports a three-month delay in the start date of the paid family and medical leave law to October 1, 2019. We believe there are changes needed to the law to allow additional time for all employers and employees to adequately prepare for the sweeping new benefits program. We urge the administration and the Legislature to address this important and vital request.

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    Thank you Atrius Health for issuing this blog and for supporting the need for a delay so that the department of family leave has time to finalize the draft regulations and employers and employees have time to prepare and make decisions. This impacts every business (and 1099 independent contractor workers) including state government as employers – On behalf of the thousands of employers that we represent and who we have heard from – they are not ready for the July 1 deadline.

    Comment by Brad MacDougall, VP for Government Affairs on May 30, 2019 at 6:21 pm

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