Additional Time for Massachusetts Taxpayers PFMLA Requirement

On June 14, 2019, the Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave announced that companies will be getting a temporary reprieve from implementing several aspects of the state’s new Paid Family and Medical Leave Act (PFMLA). The Massachusetts Legislature and Governor’s office combined efforts to enact legislation providing the delay in the hopes that the additional time will enable companies to properly prepare to implement the PFMLA. Contribution withholding is now pushed back to a start date of October 1, 2019, and the deadline to circulate the mandatory notice to workers has been moved to September 30, 2019.

To ensure that the program is still on track to be fully funded by its January 2021 start date, the state has increased the total contribution rate for the tax to .75 percent of qualifying earnings for 2019, up from .63 percent. In addition, companies that wish to take advantage of the private plan exemption for their 2019 contributions must file their applications by December 20, 2019, and their exemption will be applied retroactively to the October 1 contribution withholding start date. However, the law did not delay the publication of the final regulations, which are still scheduled to be final and effective on July 1, 2019, and could possibly be released as early as June 19, 2019. The legislation allows companies time to review and inquire with the state about the details of the tax well in advance of the first withholding date.

Read our May alert on the PFMLA requirement.