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Date: December 14, 2017
Revised: May 7, 2018

Bulletin Number: 1619

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Subject New York State Paid Family Leave Program (NY Paid Family Leave)

Purpose To inform agencies of the implementation of the New York State Paid Family Leave.

Affected Employees As of January 1, 2018, employees in the following Management Confidential Bargaining Units will be affected:

06 Management Confidential
18 NYS Police M/C
46 Military and Naval Affairs M/C
66 Public Employment Relations Board M/C

Background In 2016, the Governor signed into law a comprehensive Paid Family Leave policy. The law provides for a deduction from employee wages to fund the program.  Paid Family Leave coverage is funded by employee payroll deductions. Most full-time and part-time employees of the State of New York in Management Confidential designated bargaining units will be eligible for Paid Family Leave. State employees who are represented by a union may be covered if Paid Family Leave is collectively bargained.

This program began with a bi-weekly deduction limit in paychecks dated January 4, 2018 (Institution) and January 10, 2018 (Administration).  The deduction limit will be modified to an annual limit effective in paychecks dated May 10, 2018 (Institution) and May 16, 2018 (Administration).

Complete details on Paid Family Leave are available at: www.ny.gov/PaidFamilyLeave.

State employees may find additional information at: www.cs.ny.gov/pfl.

The New York State Department of Financial Services has announced that the 2018 premium rate and the maximum weekly employee contribution for coverage is 0.126% (0.00126) of an employee’s weekly wage, up to the Statewide Average Weekly Wage (SAWW).  According to the New York State Department of Labor, the 2016 SAWW is $1,305.92 per week and the maximum employee premium deduction for Paid Family Leave will be $85.56 annually.  The corresponding maximum deduction is as follows:


Pay Frequency

Maximum Annual Deduction

Maximum Annual Taxable Gross

Formula

Bi-weekly

$85.56

$67,908

Taxable Gross  * 0.00126
(YTD tax deducted = YTD taxable wages * 0.00126

** NOTE ** This change will be effective with the paychecks of May 10, 2018 (Institution) and May 16, 2018 (Administration)

Eligibility Criteria All New York State employees in the above mentioned bargaining units are required to be covered for this program.

OSC Actions OSC has created a new status field on the State Tax Data page labeled FLI (Family Leave Insurance) Status to identify employees who will have the new tax deduction taken.

The FLI Status field will be set to ‘Subject’ for all employees in the eligible bargaining units.

For all other employees, the FLI Status field will be set to ‘Not Applicable.’

OSC will deduct Paid Family Leave from employees’ paychecks using the current rate of 0.00126, not to exceed the maximum deduction of $85.56 annually. There is no longer a bi-weekly cap applied.

Most earnings will be included in this calculation. (Click for a list of Earnings Codes that will not be included.)

OSC Actions – Earnings OSC has created new Action/Reason codes to be used to identify employees who have received approval to use the NY Paid Family Leave benefit. These Action/Reason codes are effective December 7, 2017, for use on or after January 1, 2018.
  • LOA/PFL- Leave of Absence/Paid Family Leave
  • RFL/PFL- Return from Leave/Paid Family Leave

Agency Actions Agencies must identify which of their employees in the eligible bargaining units are not required to have the deduction taken for the NY Paid Family Leave program and:

AND

  • update the employee’s FLI Status field to ‘Exempt’.  See Job Aid_A for instructions. 

To process waivers in time to affect the first paycheck from which deductions will be taken, agencies must obtain the signed waiver and update the Employee Tax Data Page by December 22, 2017 for Institution paychecks (January 4, 2018) and by December 29, 2017 for Administration paychecks (January 10, 2018).

Agencies should inform any affected employees of the change in the Paid Family Leave deduction.  Employees whose weekly wage is below or at the Statewide Average Weekly Wage will not experience a change. Employees who earn above the Statewide Average Weekly Wage will experience an increase in their payroll deduction, but no change in their total annual contributions. Employees may estimate their deduction using the Paid Family Leave Weekly Payroll Deduction Calculator. Actual deduction amounts may vary from pay period to pay period, depending on the employee’s gross bi-weekly pay. Once the annual cap of $85.56 is met, deductions will no longer be withheld from the employee’s paycheck.

Agency Actions - Earnings Agencies are responsible for using the correct Leave of Absence Reason code in PayServ.  For eligibility criteria pertaining to the Paid Family Benefit, agencies should refer to: www.ny.gov/PaidFamilyLeave
 If an employee has initially been placed on a Leave of Absence with an incorrect reason code, the agency must correct the Action/Reason code to PFL as soon as they are notified that the leave of absence is due to Paid Family Leave. 
If there are no subsequent rows in the employee’s job history, the agency must enter the following transactions on Job Data:
  • The appropriate Rein Leave transaction
  • Leave of Absence - LOA/PFL

 
If there are subsequent rows, the agency must submit a Job Action Request DTA/Cor Hist and enter the reason in the status reason box on the page.

If an employee is no longer receiving the Paid Family Leave Benefit, the proper Return from Leave code RFL/PFL must be submitted.  

If a leave of absence transaction is submitted retroactively, refer to Payroll Bulletins #470 and #1038 for information regarding overpayments and their recovery.

The use of NY Paid Family Leave will not affect an employee’s anniversary date or increment code.  However, this benefit is not eligible for Retirement service credit.

Control-D Reports Available After Processing

A new Control-D report - NTAX511 (Paid Family Leave) has been created to provide agencies with a list of all employees with the NY Paid Family Leave deduction and the amount taken.

Tax Information Paid Family Leave is an after-tax deduction. It will be reported on employees’ Form W-2 beginning in tax year 2018.

Deduction Refund Processing Refund requests for an erroneously processed Paid Family Leave deduction should be submitted via email by the Agency Payroll Officer to the Tax and Compliance mailbox.   The email subject line should state “Paid Family Leave Refund Request.”  The Agency Payroll Officer should provide the: Emplid, Employee Name, and Refund Amount.

Payroll Register and Employee’s Paycheck/Advice The Paid Family Leave deduction will be displayed on the Payroll Register. The deduction description (NY Paid Family Leave), the amount deducted and the year to date deduction total appear on the employee’s paycheck stub or direct deposit advice statement effective in paychecks dated February 7, 2018 (Administration) and February 15, 2018 (Institution). Agencies will be able to view the deduction for PFL in PayServ on the “Review Paycheck” page under Taxes.

Questions Questions regarding Paid Family Leave or the payroll deduction change should be directed to the Department of Civil Service at pfl@cs.ny.gov.

Questions regarding this bulletin may be emailed to the Tax and Compliance mailbox.