Albany, NY – New York State has launched one of the nation’s most comprehensive Paid Family Leave policy in the nation. Starting January 1, 2018, New Yorkers will have job-protected paid time off to bond with a new child, care for a loved one with a serious health condition or help relieve family pressures when a loved one is called to active military service abroad. When fully phased in, New Yorkers will be eligible for up to 12 weeks of paid time off.

“Our strongest-in-the-nation Paid Family Leave policy will ensure that no one has to choose between losing a job and missing the birth of a child or being able to spend time with a loved one in their final days,” Governor Cuomo said. “This will help improve the lives of workers across this great state and I am proud to enact this landmark legislation to help move New York forward.”

Those eligible for Paid Family Leave include:

  • Parents during the first 12 months following the birth, adoption, or foster placement of a child;
  • Caretakers for a sick spouse, domestic partner, child, stepchild, parent, stepparent, parent-in-law, grandparent or grandchild;
  • Employees with a spouse, child, domestic partner or parent who has been notified of an order of active military service abroad.

Full-time employees with a regular schedule of 20 or more hours a week will be eligible for Paid Family Leave after 26 consecutive weeks of employment. Part-time employees with a regular schedule of less than 20 hours a week can apply for Paid Family Leave after working 175 days for their employer.

The United States is far behind other countries when it comes to paid family leave. Currently, just 14 percent of the U.S. workforce has access to employer-sponsored paid family leave. The numbers are even worse for low-wage workers, 94 percent of whom have no access to paid family leave. In New York, they now will.


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