New Year New Mass Laws
As the year is coming to an end, we want to make sure our client are prepared for the January 1, 2021. There are new changes concerning new minimum wage, paid family and medical leave, employee eligibility, amounts and reasons for leave, benefits, and notice to employees.
Increasing to $13.50 per hour
Employees who receive tips will increase to $5.55 an hour.
Retail employees who work on Sundays, Memorial Day, Juneteenth, and Labors Day will be reduced to 1.2 times the employees regular rate pay. With the exception of New Year's Day, Columbus Day, and Veterans Day will continue to be 1.5 times the employees regular rate.
Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML):
Includes partial wage replacement, job protection, and continuation of employment benefits
This is a state funded tax that started on October 1, 2019
Only employers and employees who are exempt from state unemployment are except from PFML
Employers are responsible to pay the premiums, but should not pay PFML directly to employees
For more information please visit the states PRML website.
Employer is not responsible to determine who is eligble for PFML The state handles this.
Employees who qualifies for PFML:
If an employee $5,100 during the last 4 completed calendar quarters (from any combination of Massachusetts employers), and at least 30 times more than the amount they would be eligible to get each week from PFML; and
Paid the full 0.75% contribution rate for both family and medical leave for at least 2 of their last 4 completed calendar quarters before claiming benefits.
Amount and Reasons for Leave:
Eligible employees are alloted up to 12 weeks for family leave, 20 for medical leave, or 26 weeks for a combination of both.
Examples of what family leave can be used for:
Connect with a newborn child
Connect with a child after an adoption or foster care placement
Operate family affairs while a member is on actice duty in the armed forces
In July, of 2021, you would be able to care for a family member with a serious health condition
** It can also be taken if an emploee has their own serious health issues**
Provides job protection for employee
Employeers required to pay health insurance
The benefit amount will be equal to 80% of an employee’s weekly wage that is 50% or less of the state average weekly wage (SAWW), plus 50% of their weekly wages above 50% of the SAWW (if any).
This benefit will be limited to $850 per week in 2021.
Employers do not determine how much their employee is entitled to the state is. State decision is factored by their past earnings and current SAW
Notify your current employees as soon as possible
New employees must be notified within 30 days and in their primary language.
Employers are responsible to have a written acknowledgement they received notice.