Thursday, June 13, 2024

Maryland Paid Family and Medical Leave Scheduled to Start on July 1, 2026.

     Maryland has enacted a paid family and medical leave insurance program paid family and medical leave insurance program that will begin paying benefits on July 1, 2026.  The benefit will be up to $1,000 per week.  The program is funded by a tax on employee wages.  The tax is paid by employees and by employers with 15 or more workers.  (Small employers are exempt from paying into the fund).  The benefits are paid by the State or an Insurer and not the employer. 

     The leave can be for up to 12 weeks.  It can be used to (1) welcome a new child; (2) care for the employee's own serious health condition; (3) care a family member’s serious health condition; or (4) make arrangements for a family member’s military deployment.

     This paid family and medical leave will need to be coordinated with  other leave.  Employers cannot require that employees use other paid leave before or during the period covered by this new paid family and medical leave program.      

     The law authorizing the insurance program contains an anti-retaliation provision. It allows an employee to file an administrative claim if the employee is not restored to his or position at the end of their protected leave, or if the employer terminates an employee for taking a protected leave (though there are some exceptions).

  The Maryland Department of Labor has issued a set of draft regulations to implement the new program.   

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