Family Leave Insurance Update - 03/2020


Starting July 1, 2020, the New Jersey Paid Family Leave Insurance Benefit (FLI) will increase to 12 paid consecutive weeks per year, and Intermittent Family Leave Insurance (FLI) will increase to 56 paid days per year. Also, the FLI weekly benefit rate will increase to 85% of your average weekly wage, with a benefit cap of $881.

It is important to understand that the benefit amount is determined based on the date of your claim. That means that you will only be eligible for the longer benefit period and increased rate if the first date of your claim is after July 1, 2020. If you start a Family Leave Insurance claim before July 1st, you will not be able to access the larger benefit amount until a full year from the date of your initial claim passes.

Here is a summary of the changes:

Claim Started Before July 1, 2020
(Lower Benefit)
Claim Started After July 1, 2020
(Higher Benefit)
Weekly Benefit Amount 2/3 of Average Weekly Wage up to $667 per week 85% of Average Weekly Wage up to $881 per Week
Maximum Number of Weeks or Intermittent Days 6 Consecutive Weeks Per Year or 42 Intermittent Days Per Year 12 Consecutive Weeks Per Year or 56 Intermittent Days Per Year
Example Baby born on March 1, 2020, disability ending April 10, 2020. FLI claim begins April 11, 2020. Benefits will remain the lower amount until April 11, 2021. Baby born on March 1, 2020, disability ending April 10, 2020 and return to work on April 11th. FLI claim begins July 1, 2020. You will be eligible for the higher weekly benefit and longer length of time, as long as you did not have a FLI claim from July 1, 2019 – July 1, 2020.

Tips about Family Leave Insurance:

  • Family Leave Insurance provides partial compensation to care for a qualified sick relative or to bond with a child under the age of 1. Qualified relatives have expanded to include parents, a spouse, children of any age, parents-in-law, siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, any individuals related by blood, and any other individuals with whom you consider to be family.
  • To qualify, you must have earned $10,000 of W2 income or worked 20 weeks, earning a minimum of $200 per week during your base year. These earnings need to be NJ W2 (employment) income. Self-employment and 1099 income do not qualify for claims.
  • A father who meets the work requirements may receive FLI to bond with a child under 1.
  • There is no longer a waiting period from the time that family leave begins, until when benefits can be paid. If you work at two jobs, you will be able to continue working at one job and claim FLI from the other job.
  • If you work only 10 months per year, you are only eligible for FLI during the summer months if you can demonstrate a history of summer employment.
  • Family Leave Insurance does not provide job protection. Discuss with your employer whether your job is secure before starting a claim.

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