In addition to the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), some states have their own comprehensive family leave laws that may also require employers to grant employees time off for the birth or adoption of a child or to care for a family member with a serious illness.
Massachusetts does have such a law.
Effective January 1, 2021, eligible Massachusetts employees will be entitled to up to 12 weeks’ paid leave to care for a family member or bond with a new child, up to 20 weeks’ paid leave for their own serious health conditions, and up to 26 weeks’ leave to care for a military servicemember (MA Gen. Laws Ch. 175M, et seq.).
Covered employers. Most private employers with one or more employees are covered by the law. Public employers may opt in to the system.
Covered employees. Employees who meet the financial eligibility requirements to receive unemployment compensation in Massachusetts will also be eligible for paid family leave.
Self-employed individuals may voluntarily obtain paid family leave coverage for themselves if desired.
Note: Employment, as defined by Massachusetts law, may not be limited solely to circumstances in which the services are localized within the commonwealth (i.e., performed entirely within the geographic boundaries or performed both within and without, but where the outside service is incidental to the service within).
Massachusetts law may also apply to services performed by residents of the commonwealth when the employer’s base of operations is not in any state in which some part of the service is performed (MA Gen. Laws Ch. 151A, Sec. 3).
Reasons for leave. An eligible employee may use paid family leave benefits for any ...