Maryland is preparing to launch a new paid family and medical leave insurance system, so it’s not too early for HR teams to start thinking about getting ready.
Starting in 2026, the Maryland FAMLI system will ensure that workers are able to take time away from work to care for themselves or a family member. This program will provide employees with wage replacement during this leave, with a maximum of $1000 a week for 12 weeks. In some scenarios, employees may be entitled to an additional 12 weeks. This program will be funded by payroll taxes covered by employers and employees.
Who is eligible for FAMLI?
Any worker in MD who has worked 680 hours in the past 12 months (this could cover multiple employers). Self-employed individuals can also elect to participate.
What new protections does FAMLI grant employees?
FAMLI will provide wage replacement while a worker takes time away from work. The law also provides job protection and prohibits retaliation so workers can have confidence that they will be able to return to their job after their leave.
Is FAMLI paid?
Starting in 2026, the Maryland FAMLI system will ensure that workers are able to take time away from work to care for themselves or a family member and receive up to $1,000 a week for up to 12 weeks. Some employees may be eligible for additional paid leave under the insurance program’s benefits.
Do employers have to pay for FAMLI leave? If so, how does that work?
All employers with at least one employee in Maryland must participate in the new program. However, only employers with at least 15 employees must also contribute to the fund with the employee, each paying half.
Here is the breakdown of employer responsibilities:
- Employers with one or more employees must withhold a payroll tax from employee wages for the program
- Employers with 15 or more employees must contribute toward the fund for each employee
Does FAMLI interact with FMLA?
If the leave taken under FAMLI also qualifies for leave under FMLA, or any other protected leave, those benefits will run concurrently (at the same time). Employees will recognize the benefit under both laws where applicable.
Does FAMLI offer job protection?
The law provides protections so workers can have confidence that they will be able to return to their job after their leave. Employers are only able to terminate for cause and must continue covering the employee’s insurance benefits during the leave.
What leave options does the FAMLI provide employees?
Employees may take leave in full day or intermittent increments of no less than 4 hours. Employees can take leave to:
- Manage their own serious health condition needs
- Bond with a new child
- Care for a family member with a serious health condition
- Care for a service member
- Attend to a qualifying exigency related to a military deployment
How can your HR team ensure they are complaint with FAMLI?
When FAMLI takes effect, AbsenceSoft will be updated and ready on day one to calculate eligibility automatically for Maryland-based employees. A leave team will be able to easily track and process leave requests for employees eligible for FAMLI, in the same system as FMLA, ADA, PWFA, and company-specific leave policies. To see AbsenceSoft in action, you can schedule a demo today.
To learn more about FAMLI, you can visit their official website.