Paid Family Leave

New York Paid Family Leave Act (PFL)

As of 2018, New York State Paid Family Leave provides employees who work in the private sector up to
10 weeks of paid leave with job protection in order to care for a child or close family member with a serious health condition, or for family military reasons.   In 2021, this extends to 12 weeks of paid leave.

The purpose of the law is to provide employees job-protected paid leave to care for a close loved one or bond with a newborn child. Paid Leave is meant to lighten the financial stress on taking time off from work for family reasons, either to expand family or care for a loved one with a serious health condition.

Employers with at least 1 employee working in New York for 30 consecutive days must offer Paid Family Leave benefits.   Employees who regularly work more than 20 hours per week are eligible for Paid Family Leave after 26 weeks of employment, or after 175 days for employees who work less than 20 hours week.  

See the updates to the Paid Leave laws under COVID-19.

Video FAQ: Employee eligibility, benefits, notice requirements and protections under New York Paid Family Leave in 2019. 

NY Paid Family Leave vs. Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

  • PFL only applies to a family memberhealth.
  • FMLA provides time off to care for your own injury or illness.
  • Employees can use both FMLA and PFL to bond with a newborn baby, adopted or foster child.

Unlike FMLA which is unpaid, PFL is paid leave and your employer cannot require you to use paid time off (PTO) for Paid Family Leave. However, note that Paid Family Leave must be applied when the employee is eligible for both PFL and FMLA. Disability benefits also cannot be used during PFL.  See FMLA vs. PFL.

Under PFL,  a “close family member” can be husband, wife, child, stepchild, grandparent, domestic partner,  grandparent, a person who you have legal custody, or a loved one you are responsible for in loco parentisNY Paid Family Leave applies to same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples as well opposite-sex couples expecting a newborn, adopted child, or foster child.    

Job Security and Health Insurance Coverage

Paid Family Leave provides employees with 10 weeks of job-protected time off, which means that your employer is required to keep your job and pay upon returning to work.   The Paid Family Leave Law requires employers to hold the job while on PFL or FMLA and maintain health insurance or medical coverage.

In 2020 of NYPFL, employees are eligible to take up to 10 weeks paid time off with 60% compensation of a week’s average wage.  In 2021, employees can take up to 12 weeks paid time off, with 67% compensation of a week’s average wage.   Although employers have a duty to notify employees of PFL, you should still request the application and ask any questions about taking leave.   

If your employer refused to allow you to take time off, or retaliated against you for taking time off, call an  employment attorney who can guide you through your Paid Family Leave benefits, and protect against employer retaliation.

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Call a New York Employment Lawyer About a Paid Family Leave Violation or Retaliation at Work

The Paid Family Leave attorneys at White & Hilferty can protect your rights against Family Leave Retaliation, such as a demotion, termination, bad reviews, or any adverse action occurring after requesting time off.   We are experienced in the particular Paid Family Leave system deadlines.  Schedule your free, confidential consultation by calling (646) 698-8990 or Contact Us online.