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Massachusetts Laws

Discover important state and local employment laws for Massachusetts.
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Published: Feb 15, 2024

Massachusetts Passes New Pay Transparency Bill but Not Yet Signed into Law

Massachusetts Passes New Pay Transparency Bill but Not Yet Signed into Law
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Update Effective: TBD

Massachusetts is set to join the increasing number of states enacting pay transparency laws which typically require employers to disclose minimum and maximum salary ranges for job openings. 

The Massachusetts House of Representatives and Senate have both recently passed similar pay transparency bills, with the expectation that a combined bill will eventually be signed into law by Governor Maura Healey.

If approved, employers with 25 or more employees in Massachusetts would be required to post the pay range in internal and external job postings. Employers with 100 or more full-time employees in Massachusetts at any time during the preceding year, who are also subject to the federal filing requirements of wage data reports (EEO-1, EEO-3, EEO-4, or EEO-5), would also need to submit a copy of their federal filings to the Secretary of the Commonwealth. That data, which reflects workforce demographics and salaries, would then be submitted to the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.    

Employers should monitor legislation updates for final approval and effective dates if passed.

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Published: Nov 9, 2023

Employees May Supplement, or “Top Off,” PFML Benefits with Vacation, PTO, and Sick Time

Employees May Supplement, or “Top Off,” PFML Benefits with Vacation, PTO, and Sick Time
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Update Effective: November 1, 2023

As of November 1, 2023, employees within Massachusetts who participate in Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) will be allowed to supplement, or top off, their PFML wage replacement benefits with any available accrued paid leave (e.g., sick time, vacation, PTO, personal time, etc.). Additionally, employees can choose to either top off their state benefits with accrued paid leave or save their accrued paid leave to use at a later time. Limitations on only using available accrual paid leave towards the 7-day unpaid waiting period or in one block of time at the beginning or end of the PFML period no longer apply. Employers should review and update their PFML policies.

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Published: Aug 12, 2022

Massachusetts Enacts CROWN Act

Massachusetts Enacts CROWN Act
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Update Effective: Immediately

Massachusetts enacted its CROWN act on July 26, 2022. The state’s CROWN Act extends the definition of race discrimination throughout applicable statutes in the state to explicitly prohibit discrimination based on hairstyles associated with race, such as, and not limited to, natural and protective hairstyles, such as braids, locks, twists and Bantu knots.

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Published: Oct 14, 2021

Massachusetts COVID-19 EPSL Extended Through April 2022

Massachusetts COVID-19 EPSL Extended Through April 2022
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Update Effective: Immediately

Massachusetts extended its COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) ordinance before its expiration date of September 30, 2021. The Act extends the state’s EPSL and reimbursement mechanisms through April 1, 2022, and extends eligibility to include leave to care for a family member receiving, or recovering from, immunization.

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Published: Oct 14, 2021

Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave (MA PFML) Benefit Rate and Contribution Rate Increases

Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave (MA PFML) Benefit Rate and Contribution Rate Increases
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Update Effective: January 1, 2022

MAPFL benefit and contribution rate changes have been updated based on the state average weekly rate. The maximum benefit provided to employees utilizing the benefit has been raised to $1,084.31 per week. The benefit contribution rate for employers has been reduced to 0.68% of eligible wages.

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Published: Jun 10, 2021

Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave

Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave
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Update Effective: Update effective: May 28, 2021

Employers in Massachusetts must provide up to 40 hours of COVID-19-related paid leave to eligible employees with a qualifying reason. This leave is in addition to any existing sick leave entitlements, and employees must be paid their regular rate of pay, subject to a cap. Employers who are not eligible for FFCRA tax credits may seek reimbursement from the Commonwealth, subject to the cap. The paid leave entitlement will remain in effect through September 30, 2021 or the exhaustion of program funds, whichever is earlier. Additionally, employers must provide a notice about the law to employees.

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Published: Jun 10, 2021

Paid Family and Medical Leave for July 2021

Paid Family and Medical Leave for July 2021
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Update Effective: July 1, 2021

Beginning on January 1, 2021, most paid family and medical leave benefits became available for eligible MA employees, with the exception of benefits to care for a family member with a serious health condition. Beginning on July 1, 2021, eligible employees will be able to claim paid family leave benefits to care for a qualifying family member with a serious health condition.

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Published: Dec 17, 2020

Paid Family and Medical Leave

Paid Family and Medical Leave
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Update Effective: January 1, 2021 and July 1, 2021

Beginning on January 1, 2021, most paid family and medical leave benefits will be available for eligible MA employees, including those to receive care, bond with a new child, and provide service-related care. Paid family leave benefits to care for a family member with a serious health condition will become available on July 1, 2021.

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Published: Sep 11, 2019

MA Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) Continues to Phase In

MA Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) Continues to Phase In
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Update Effective: September 30, 2019 and October 1, 2019

As reported previously, the delayed start dates for withholding contributions and notifying workers will soon go into effect. Employers will have to provide notices to their employees by September 30 and begin withholding contributions from covered individuals beginning on October 1. Justworks will be assisting customers with MA PFML contributions and notice requirements. We will send additional communications to impacted customers as the deadline approaches.

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Published: Jun 13, 2019

MA Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) Program Start Date Delayed

MA Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) Program Start Date Delayed
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Update Effective: October 1, 2019

As mentioned previously, MA PFML was set to have reporting and premium payment requirements go into effect on July 1 of this year. Governor Baker, along with state house and senate leadership, announced that they would be implementing a three-month delay to the contributions requirements, in order to ensure adequate time for implementation and program design clarification. An emergency bill will need to be filed and passed for this delay to officially take effect. Until further notice, employers should assume that other requirements (such as notice and posting requirements) will not have an adjusted start date and will remain effective for June 30.

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Published: Feb 28, 2019

Massachusetts Releases Proposed Regulations for Paid Family and Medical Leave

Massachusetts Releases Proposed Regulations for Paid Family and Medical Leave
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Update Effective: Update effective: July 1, 2019

On January 23, the newly-formed Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave released proposed regulations, clarifying the rights and responsibilities of employers under the state’s forthcoming Paid Family and Medical Leave program. Premium contributions and reporting requirements are set to begin July 1, while benefits will be available for eligible MA employees beginning January 1, 2021. The department plans to release finalized regulations by March 31.

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Published: Dec 18, 2018

Massachusetts Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) Form

Massachusetts Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) Form
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Update Effective: Immediately

Employers in Massachusetts with six or more employees will have to report certain health insurance information to the state. If you’re a Justworks customer, Justworks has been granted an extension to file on your behalf, but you will need to follow the instructions at the link above in order for us to do so.

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This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, legal or tax advice. If you have any legal or tax questions regarding this content or related issues, then you should consult with your professional legal or tax advisor.
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