Blog - New York Paid Family Leave Update for 2019

New York Paid Family Leave Update for 2019

Effective January 1, 2019, the number of weeks that eligible employees can take to bond with a new child, care for a sick family member, or assist loved ones when a family member is deployed abroad on active military service increases to 10 weeks.

The number of weeks employees can take will continue to rise through 2021, at which time employees will be able to take up to 12 weeks of job-protected, paid time off to be there for their family when they are most needed.

In 2019, employees taking Paid Family Leave will receive 55% of their average weekly wage, up to a cap of 55% of the current Statewide Average Weekly Wage of $1,357.11. The maximum weekly benefit for 2019 is $746.41.

Paid Family Leave Benefits Examples for 2019
Worker’s Average Weekly Wage Weekly PFL Benefit (2019)*
$600 $330
$1,000 $550
$2,000 $746.41

*The weekly PFL benefit is capped at 55% of the New York State average weekly wage, which is $746.41.

Benefits Increase Through 2021
Year Weeks of Leave Benefit
2019 10 weeks 55% of employee’s AWW, up to 55% of SAWW
2020 10 weeks 60% of employee’s AWW, up to 60% of SAWW
2021 12 weeks 67% of employee’s AWW, up to 67% of SAWW

New York State Paid Family Leave (PFL) law provides partial income replacement and job protection while workers are on leave for covered reasons, such as bonding with their child (during the first 12 months following the birth, adoption, or fostering of a child), caring for a close relative with a serious health condition, or helping relieve family pressures when someone is called to active military service. Employees on PFL are also guaranteed to be able to return to their job and continue their health insurance. If employees contribute to the cost of their health insurance, they must continue to pay their portion of the premium cost while on PFL. The program is mandatory for all private employers, and public employers may opt-in.

Employees may take the maximum benefit length in any given 52-week period. The 52-week clock starts on the first day the employee takes Paid Family Leave.

New York Paid Family Leave is insurance that may be funded by employees through payroll deductions. In 2019, the contribution is 0.153% of an employee’s gross wages each pay period. The maximum annual contribution is $107.97.

Employees earning less than the current Statewide Average Weekly Wage of $1,357.11 will contribute less than the annual cap of $107.97, consistent with their actual wages.

For example:

  1. Employees earning $519 a week ($27,000 a year) will pay about 79 cents per week: $519 x 0.153%
  2. Employees earning $1,000 a week ($52,000 a year) will pay $1.53 per week: $1,000 x 0.153%.
  3. Employees earning the SAWW of $1,357.11 ($70,569.72 a year) or more will pay 0.153% x their gross wages each pay period until they reach the maximum of $107.97.