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Paid Time Off (PTO) Changes in New York Could Be on the Horizon

Paid Time OffNew York Proposes Changes to Paid Time Off Rules

Paid time off (PTO) is a term used to describe time employees are entitled to pay when they are away from work. PTO is sometimes categorized more specifically as sick time or vacation time or by other similar terms, but this is becoming increasingly less popular.

What Are PTO policies?

Though PTO policies vary from company to company, in general, employees are gaining more rights regarding their paid time away from work. The majority of New York lawmakers believe changes are needed concerning PTO in the workplace and new laws have gone into effect in recent years that have regulated PTO.

If you work in New York it’s important to understand the regulations regarding PTO so you understand your benefits and can identify when an employer is taking advantage of you.

Paid Family Leave and PTO

One of the most recent changes in PTO laws is a benefit known as Paid Family Leave. Paid Family Leave offers paid time off to employees, both male and female, who have a new child or who are tasked with caring for a relative with serious health problems. It is similar to the federal Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) benefit, but offers benefits in addition to what FMLA provides.

In 2011, the maximum amount of paid family leave time was extended from 8 to 10 weeks under the law. The percentage of average weekly wage was also increased from 55 percent from 50 percent.

Additionally, New York increased the employer contribution wage by more than $20 and expanded the reasons a person might be permitted to use his or her Paid Family Leave benefit. As a result of the expansion, preparation and recovery from organ donation is now included under the benefits.

Further changes are scheduled to occur by 2021. New York plans to provide a maximum of 12 weeks of family leave and increase the average weekly wages given to 67 percent.

More PTO Changes on the Way

In addition to the changes that are already in place and those set to go into effect in the next three years, additional changes have been proposed.

Mayor Bill de Blasio wants New York City to be the first to make PTO for most public and private and private employees mandatory. Under his plan, private employees would receive a minimum of 10 days of PTO per year. This plan has yet to be passed by the city council, but many believe it would improve productivity and strengthen families. The proposal has received criticism, so only time will tell if it’s enacted.

If and when the new plan goes into effect, it would make New York City the first in the nation to mandate PTO for private employees.

For more information about Mayor de Blasio’s proposal, check out this video from CBS New York.

If you’re confused about PTO laws or you believe you might be entitled to time off with pay and your employer is denying this right, we might be able to help. For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact Borrelli & Associates, P.L.L.C.

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