Paid Family Leave
NYS Paid Family Leave (PFL) was signed into law in 2016, and became available to classified Management/Confidential (MC06) employees in 2018.
As of January 1, 2019, PFL is available to unclassified Management/Confidential (SUNY MC13) and UUP-represented employees, and may become available to other union-represented employees through the collective bargaining process.
The purpose of PFL is to help employees with work-life balance by providing a paid leave alternative to charging paid leave accruals for leaves of absence to attend to family* needs associated with:
- the birth or placement of a biological, adopted, or foster child (first 12 months)
- a family member's serious health condition (physical or psychological care)
- a call to active duty in the U.S. armed forces (qualifying exigency)
PFL is not available for an employee's own serious health condition or military activation.
*Definitions of “Family“- a child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, spouse, or domestic partner as defined in this section.
While on PFL, employment is protected; health insurance is also protected, provided premiums continue to be paid. Once health insurance premiums stop being paid for through biweekly payroll deductions, the NYS Dept. of Civil Service Employee Benefits Division will bill enrollees directly via U.S. Mail, so employees should be sure that their current mailing address is on file. As PFL is a leave without pay, retirement contributions and service credit are not applicable while on PFL.
PFL for 2019: up to ten weeks of leave in any 52-week period, paid at 55% of the employee's average weekly wage, not to exceed 55% of the State Average Weekly Wage (SAWW)
PFL for 2020: up to ten weeks of leave in any 52-week period, paid at 60% of the employee's average weekly wage, not to exceed 60% of the SAWW
PFL for 2021: up to 12 weeks of leave in any 52-week period, paid at 67% of the employee's average weekly wage, not to exceed 67% of the SAWW
Every year, the NYS Dept. of Labor determines the SAWW for the upcoming year. Your average weekly wage is the average of your last eight weeks of pay received for the regular obligation prior to starting PFL. To estimate your PFL benefits, use the Weekly Benefits Calculator.
Impact of PFL on Attendance and Leave and Other Benefits:
- An employee on PFL does not earn vacation or sick leave accruals. Employees on periodic PFL will earn accruals only so long as they are in full pay status (working, charging leave accruals, or on any other leave at full pay) for each month, or major fraction thereof.
- While on PFL, health insurance is protected, provided premiums continue to be paid. Once health insurance premiums stop being paid for through biweekly payroll deductions, the NYS Dept. of Civil Service Employee Benefits Division will bill enrollees directly via U.S. Mail, so employees should be sure that their current mailing address is on file.
Retirement contributions and accrual of service credit cease during periods of PFL, as PFL is a leave without pay.
To file a Claim
Employees should provide at least 30 days’ advance notice if the reason for PFL is foreseeable, for example: an expected birth, placement for adoption or foster care, planned medical treatment for a serious health condition of a family member or covered service member, or known military exigency. If 30 days’ notice is not practicable, then notice must be given as soon as reasonably possible. Employees must also advise the employer as soon as possible when dates of a scheduled leave change, are extended, or were initially unknown.
Questions regarding PFL absences, including eligibility, should be directed to Human Resources Office.
Questions related to the claims process should be directed via email to PFL@flexbene.com or phone at 888-PFL-SUNY (888-735-7869). Reporting questions, claim-specific issues, return to work notifications, and claims payment questions should be directed to The Standard at 833-786-5638.
More information about NYS Paid Family Leave.