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Monday, 11 July 2022 11:03

Are You Ready for Paid Leave?

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In 2020, Colorado voters approved the statewide ballot measure Proposition 118, creating the Paid Family and Medical Leave initiative (PFML). Since then, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE) has been writing regulations to finalize the statewide insurance program which will begin requiring premium payments in 2023 and offering benefits in 2024. Read on to see what your organization needs to do now to prepare for the upcoming PFML requirements.

Along with our experienced national Alera Group partners, Fall River is prepared to be your comprehensive resource to help understand your organization’s PFML compliance obligations, compare your private plan options, and assist your staff in understanding their new rights and responsibilities. Colorado is one of eleven states, plus the District of Columbia, to implement a PFML program, and our Alera Group partners have years of experience providing support to clients nationwide with PMFL plans in place.

What is it?

Colorado’s PFML is a statewide insurance program providing partial wage replacement for nearly all employees in Colorado

·       12 Weeks of paid leave per year for employees to:

o   Care for a new child (including adopted and fostered)

o   Care for their own or a family member's medical condition

o   Make arrangements for military deployment

o   Address safety needs related to domestic violence and/or sexual assault

Who is eligible?

PFML benefits apply to most employers which have employees located in Colorado. Employees who reside in Colorado and work for any size organization – including non-profits, religious groups and companies headquartered in other states – are eligible and their employers must participate.

Self-employed and local government entities can opt-out, though their employees can still opt-in.

Unlike FMLA, there is no waiting period for employees to begin taking benefits. Employees are eligible after earning $2,500 in wages in Colorado.

When is this happening?

Premiums for the statewide program will be collected starting January 1, 2023
Employees can apply for benefits starting January 1, 2024

What are your options?

1.     Participate in the statewide program

a.     Work with your payroll provider to withhold the appropriate premium amounts for your employees and remit them to the state – similar to unemployment insurance premiums.

                                               i.     Total premiums for 2023 are set at 0.9% of an employee’s wage (capped at the Social Security Withholding limit for 2023).

                                              ii.     At least half of the premiums must be paid by the employer unless your organization has 9 or fewer total employees.

2.     Purchase a private market insurance plan alternative

a.     Work with Fall River Employee Benefits to request proposals from carriers which offer state-approved alternative private plans and potentially avoid premium payments in 2023

b.     Ensure that your organization receives state approval to offer and operate your private plan alternative for 2023, which Fall River's partners can help with, too, if desired.

What do you need to do?

·       Continue to inform your employees and management about their rights and responsibilities. This will impact most of our clients and your Fall River team is prepared to discuss your organization’s options with you

·       Budget for your organization’s portion of premiums and make plans to withhold employee premiums and/or implement a private plan by January 1, 2023

·       Post all necessary posters, fact sheets and notices required by the state

o   https://famli.colorado.gov/employers

·       Tune in to the CDLE’s FAMLI division and Fall River Employee Benefits for further updates on rules and regulations

·       Update your HR Manuals and Employee Handbooks to reflect employee premium deductions and FAMLI benefit guidance (ex. PTO utilization and employee rights and responsibilities)

·       When available later this year, register your organization with the FAMLI Division of CDLE – even if your organization plans to opt out or purchase a private plan!

Information presented above is derived from resources and webinars through the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE):  https://famli.colorado.gov/

Additional source: https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/legal-and-compliance/state-and-local-updates/pages/colorado-regulations-paid-family-and-medical-leave.aspx

This is proprietary and intended for informational purposes only. This is general information only and does not constitute advice for any particular situation or fact pattern and cannot be relied upon as such. Statements concerning financial, regulatory or legal matters are based on general observations as an insurance broker and may not be relied upon as financial, regulatory or legal advice. 

 

Read 1263 times Last modified on Tuesday, 12 July 2022 22:53