By Bob Katzen

Beginning in January of 2021, most workers in Massachusetts will be eligible to get up to 12 weeks of paid family leave and up to 20 weeks of paid medical leave. The program will be funded by taxes paid by employees, employers and the self-employed beginning October 1. The 0.63 percent payroll tax was supposed to be effective July 1 to fund the estimated $1 billion paid family and medical leave program that was signed into law last year. Business and advocacy groups raised concerns about their ability to prepare for the for the new tax by July 1 and the Legislature moved the date to October 1.

The Paid Family and Medical Leave Program is overseen by the Department of Family and Medical Leave. According to the department’s website, the program “provides temporary income replacement to eligible workers who are welcoming a new child into their family, are struck by a serious illness or injury, need to take care of an ill or ailing relative and for certain military considerations.”

The Department of Revenue advises you to get more information on this new tax if you are a business with at least one Massachusetts employee; a business that retains independent contractors; an employee or contractor in Massachusetts; or a sole proprietor or member of an LLC and live in Massachusetts. For more information, go to

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