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December 2022: (Reminder) Colorado Requires Contributions for Paid Family and Medical Leave Beginning in 2023

01 Dec

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Update Applicable to:
All employers with 10 or more employees nationwide in the state of Colorado.

What happened?
In our previous communication here, we notified you that Colorado state published final regulations on benefits and employer participation requirements (Benefits Rules), which provide the most concrete guidance to date regarding the benefits to which employees will be entitled under the Family and Medical Leave Insurance (FAMLI) program as of January 1, 2024. This is a reminder for that update.

What are the details?
Colorado’s paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program (FAMLI) will launch on January 1, 2023. FAMLI benefits include partial wage replacement, job protection, and group health care coverage continuation. FAMLI is funded by payroll contributions and is administered by the FAMLI Division (part of the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment). Employers do not pay the monetary benefits directly to employees.

Employers must start withholdings on January 1, 2023. Employees can take FAMLI to leave starting on January 1, 2024. The FAMLI Division has a web page with FAQs, toolkits, videos, and other resources for employers.

Coverage
FAMLI applies to most employers and employees in Colorado. Those who are self-employed are not required to participate but can opt-in.

Contributions
Employers are responsible for sending contributions to FAMLI. For 2023 and 2024, the contribution rate is 0.9% of each employee’s wages up to the Social Security wage base (currently estimated to be $155,100 in 2023, which would be a max contribution of $1,395.90). If you have nine or fewer employees, your employees pay half the contribution amount, and you pay nothing. If you have ten or more employees, you pay 50%, and your employees pay 50% of the contribution.

Employee Eligibility
The state will determine an employee’s eligibility when they apply. To be eligible for FAMLI, an employee must have earned $2,500 in Colorado during their base period. To be entitled to job protection and continuation of health care coverage, the employee must have worked for the employer for at least 180 days before taking leave.

Amount and Reasons for Leave
Eligible employees may take up to 12 weeks of FAMLI leave per year for family, medical, qualifying exigency, or safe leave. Employees can take an additional four weeks for pregnancy-related complications.

Family leave is to care for a family member with a serious health condition or bond with a new child. Medical leave is for the employee’s serious health condition. Qualifying exigency leave is for making arrangements for a family member’s military deployment. Safe leave is for domestic violence or sexual assault.

If the employee’s FAMLI leave qualifies for the Colorado Family Care Act or the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), then the leaves will run concurrently.

Notice Requirements
Employers are required to provide notice about FAMLI:

  • Posting the notice in a prominent location at each worksite
  • To each employee upon hire; and
  • To an employee when they learn that the employee might need to leave for a covered reason.

The 2023 notice is available here.

For more information, please see the links below:

2023 FAMLI Program Notice

2023 FAMLI Employee Guide

Previous Vensure communication (September 27, 2023)

Article

What do employers need to do?
Employers should review the links provided above, prepare to start implementing payroll changes to collect employee contributions and post the required notice in a conspicuous location to comply with the law.

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This communication is intended solely for the purpose of conveying information. The present post might incorporate hyperlinks directing readers to websites managed by third-party entities. The inclusion of any links within this communication is meant to serve as points of reference and could encompass opinion articles from various law firms, articles from HR associations, official websites, news releases, and documents of government agencies, and other relevant third-party sources. Vensure has no authority over these external websites and bears no responsibility for their content. Furthermore, Vensure does not endorse the materials present on these websites. The contents of this communication should not be interpreted as legal advice or as a legal standpoint concerning specific facts or scenarios. Nor should it be deemed an exhaustive compilation of facts potentially pertinent to federal, state, or local laws. It is strongly advised that employers solicit legal guidance from an employment attorney when undertaking actions in response to any legal updates provided. This is due to the possibility of future alterations occurring in federal, state, and local laws, regulations, as well as the directives and guidelines issued by governing agencies. These changes may transpire at any given time, potentially rendering certain portions of the content within this update void or inaccurate.

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