Categories: Business Tips |
What Employers Need to Know about CT Paid Family Leave Act
About the CT Paid Leave Act
Starting January 1, 2021 private sector employers with one or more employees will need to begin withholding a payroll deduction of one-half of one percent (0.5%) in compliance with the CT Paid Family and Medical Leave Act (CT PFMLA). The CT PFMLA allows eligible employees to be compensated while taking time off from their employment to care for themselves or seriously ill family members and is funded by the contributions made to the Connecticut Family and Medical Leave Insurance Trust Fund.
The CT Paid Leave Authority manages the program, accepts applications for paid leave benefits, reviews those applications and if approved, administers benefits to eligible employees, those who are self-employed and sole proprietors. The CT Paid Leave Authority collects employee contributions and works with the Office of the Treasurer to properly invest and manage the contributions so that funds are available to pay benefits held in the Connecticut Family and Medical Leave Insurance Trust Fund.
This mandatory employee-funded benefit, as well as changes to the existing Connecticut Family Medical Leave Act (CT FMLA), passed in 2019, have several implications for Connecticut businesses including employment size of businesses that must participate, the definition of a family member one is eligible to leave to care for, duration of employment to be eligible and the total amount of time leave allows.
Key Dates for Employers:
December 31, 2020 – Register with the CT Paid Leave Authority. BEFORE you can register with the Paid Leave Authority you will need to establish an account with CT.gov. Please note this is a new account set up, separate from any State ID previously acquired. The CT Paid Leave provides a how-to register video — https://ctpaidleave.org/s/?language=en_US
January 1, 2021 – Employers must begin the 0.5% payroll deduction. However, please note paid leave benefits will not be available to eligible employees until January 1, 2022.
March 31, 2021 – Employers must remit employee withholdings quarterly to the CT Paid Leave Authority, with the first payment due no later than the end of the first quarter, March 31, 2021. Additional information for employers — https://ctpaidleave.org/s/employer-landing-page?language=en_US
How do employees become eligible?
Employers with one or more employees
‘Whether full- or part-time, covered employees in Connecticut are eligible for benefits under PFMLA if they have earned wages of at least $2,325 in the highest-earning quarter of the first four of the five most recently completed quarters (the “base period”) and are currently employed, or have been employed within the last 12 weeks, or are self-employed, a sole proprietor and a Connecticut resident enrolled in the program.’ — https://ctpaidleave.org/s/employee-landing-page?language=en_US
Self-employed or Sole Proprietors
If you are a sole proprietor, or self-employed, and are a Connecticut resident, you have the option to choose to opt-in and participate in the CT Paid Leave program, but you must enroll for a minimum of three years. You will need to register with the CT Paid Leave Authority and you also need to begin a payroll deduction of 0.5% beginning January 1, 2021. You may need to estimate your annual income to do determine the appropriate deduction amount. To learn how to register and opt-in visit this section of the CT Paid Leave website — https://ctpaidleave.org/s/sole-proprietor-and-self-employed?language=en_US
What life situations qualify for the paid leave?
Qualifying circumstances include starting or expanding your family, caring for yourself or a family member, if you have been impacted by family violence, or if you need to care for a military family member injured during active duty or other reasons. Covered employees can qualify for up to 12 weeks of paid leave. For additional information, and to see who is considered to be a family member visit — https://ctpaidleave.org/s/employee-landing-page?language=en_US
Who determines the paid leave request?
‘Employees will apply to their employers for time away from work. Employees will apply to the CT Paid Leave Authority for paid leave benefits in order to receive income replacement while they are on leave. In some situations, it will be necessary for the employee, the employer and the Paid Leave Authority to communicate in order to establish the reason for the leave or to verify the duration and frequency of the leave.’
This overview is intended to be an informational summary for employers and the description of program features above was sourced from the CT Paid Leave website. CTPaidLeave.org provides a number of factsheets as well as a toolkit for employers to use to comply with the program as well as to communicate with their employees about the program benefits.
For an in-depth review of the program, deadlines, eligibility and more, please refer to the CT Paid Leave website — https://ctpaidleave.org/s/?language=en_US
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