Changes to coverage criteria for 1099-MISC employees
The criteria for whether 1099-MISC employees are covered individuals was updated in 2019. 1099-MISC employees are now only covered individuals if they do not qualify as independent contractors.
Some 1099-MISC employees may have been informed that they were covered individuals, but because of the updated guidance, they are actually not covered individuals. If you have 1099-MISC employees in your workforce, read the updated criteria to see if they are still covered. If they are not, you should update those employees.
To assist with this process, we have developed a PFML 1099-MISC acknowledgment reversal form that is available for employers to use to inform them of this change. When using this form, remember to fill in your employer name.
All Massachusetts employers must display a workplace poster prepared or approved by the Department of Family and Medical Leave (DFML) that explains the benefits available to your workforce under the PFML law. You must post this poster at your workplace in a location where it can be easily read. (We suggest you place the poster alongside other mandatory workplace posters you've displayed, like wage and hours laws, workplace discrimination, worker's compensation, and workplace safety.)
The poster must be available in English and each language which is the primary language of 5 or more individuals in your workforce if these translations are available from DFML.
Written notice requirements
Employers are required to provide written notice to their current workforce of PFML benefits, contribution rates, and other provisions as outlined in M.G.L. c. 175M sec. 4. Contribution rates and benefit amounts are updated annually.
Employers must provide any new employee a notification form within 30 days of hire. The notice can be provided in paper form or electronically. The notice must include the opportunity for an employee to accept or decline receipt of the information. Each employee should return a signed form, or the employer needs to be able to show their effort to give the information to the employee. The employer can receive these acknowledgments in paper form or electronically.
Note that if more than 50% of your workforce is made up of 1099-MISC contractors, you are required to inform them of PFML benefits the same as other employees.
Please retain these forms according to your internal document retention policy. Do not send these forms to the Department of Family and Medical Leave.
In the event that an employee or self-employed individual fails to acknowledge receipt, the Department shall consider an Employer or Covered Business entity to have fulfilled its notice obligation if it can establish that it provided each member of its current workforce notice and the opportunity to acknowledge or decline to acknowledge receipt.
Employers or Covered Business Entities will be subject to all Section 4 requirements for employees or self-employed individuals who are employed or contracted with on or after Oct. 1, 2019.
Note: The identification number assigned by the Department of Family and Medical Leave will be the employer’s Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN). Please use your FEIN as your Employer ID Number on the written notice forms.
For current employees and contractors who have previously signed a form, employers must provide information on the new contribution rate 30 days in advance of the rate change. The notice may be provided electronically and does not require an updated signature.
Written notice formats
You may download a template of this notice provided by DFML or create your own.
If you choose to create your own notice, it must contain:
An explanation of the availability of family and medical leave benefits
The employee’s contribution amount and obligations
The employer's contribution amount and obligations
The employer's name and mailing address
The employer identification number assigned by DFML (FEIN)
Instructions on how to file an application for family and medical leave benefits
The mailing address, email address, and telephone number of DFML
Failure to provide the required notifications may result in the following fines.
|First violation||$50 per employee|
|Subsequent violations||$300 per employee|
Department of Family and Medical Leave - Hours of operation: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Department of Family and Medical Leave - Hours of operation: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m - 5 p.m.
Department of Revenue - Hours of operation: Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
|Last updated:||November 29, 2021|