The Basics of New York’s Paid Family Leave Program

Starting January 1st, 2018, the New York State Paid Family Leave Program will allow eligible employees to take time off to bond with a child, care for a close relative with a serious health condition, or help relieve family pressures when someone is called to active military service.

This benefit is meant to be employee-paid through payroll deductions. You may also choose not to deduct your employees and cover the cost for them.

  1. Get paid family leave coverage from your broker or insurer. This will likely be added to your existing disability insurance policy.
  2. Post a notice of compliance (similar to your disability and workers’ compensation insurance notices) you have paid family leave coverage.
  3. Inform your employees about paid family leave coverage by updating employee handbooks or providing written guidance.
  4. Update your payroll deductions to collect paid family leave contributions from your employees. In Square Payroll, navigate to the Paid Family Leave section for each employee and toggle the button next to “Withhold New York State Paid Family Leave Insurance for this employee” (be sure to apply this setting for each employee, as applicable).
  5. Inform non-eligible employees that they can choose to waive coverage by completing a waiver. Read more about employee eligibility requirements here.
  6. Learn more about the Family Leave Program and what you need to know as an employer.

Set up Paid Family Leave Deductions in Square Payroll

Square Payroll supports withholding employee contributions towards the New York State Paid Family Leave Program. The payroll contribution is percentage of each applicable employee’s weekly pay, capped at an amount determined by the State Average Weekly Wage (SAWW) for the year.

Square Payroll automatically computes employees’ Paid Family Leave contributions based on this limit and the employee rate cannot be edited.

To turn on these payroll deductions:

  1. Sign in to the Employees section of your online Square Dashboard > select an employee.
  2. Navigate to the Paid Family Leave section for the employee.
  3. Toggle Withhold New York State Paid Family Leave Insurance for this employee on.
    Note: You must apply this setting for each employee, as applicable.

Please note that Square will not debit the amount withheld from your employees. It is your responsibility to ensure this amount is paid to your private insurance provider.

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