Massachusetts law about family and medical leave

There are 2 family and medical leave laws: Massachusetts (PFML) and Federal (FMLA). This is a compilation of laws, regulations, cases and web sources on both laws.

If you are unable to find the information you are looking for, or if you have a specific question, please contact our law librarians for assistance.

Table of Contents

Best bet

Mass. Department of Family and Medical Leave
For everything you need to know about the state program, included the state tax and benefits, this is the place to start.

Federal Family and Medical Leave Act, U.S. Department of Labor.
The best place to start for information on the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Includes forms, guidance, and other resources.

Massachusetts law

MGL c.175M Paid family medical leave (PFML)
Establishes a system for paid family leave of up to 12 weeks to care for a family member, and up to 20 weeks for your own illness. The tax that pays for it begins in 2019, and leave will be available beginning in 2021.

Massachusetts regulations

458 CMR Department of Family and Medical Leave

830 CMR 175M Family and medical leave

Federal law

29 USC §§ 2601 et seq. Federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Federal regulations

29 CFR 825 Family and Medical Leave Act

Selected cases

DaPrato v. MWRA, 482 Mass. 375 (2019)
Taking vacation while on Federal FMLA. "An employer may validly consider an employee's conduct on vacation... that is inconsistent with his or her claimed reasons for medical leave.... [V]acationing while on FMLA leave may take either permissible or impermissible forms."

Web sources for employees

Appealing a denied paid family or medical leave claim, Mass. Dept. of Family and Medical Leave.
“Was your claim for Paid Family or Medical Leave (PFML) benefits denied? Learn how to request an appeal.”

Massachusetts clarifies whether employees may “top off” Paid Family and Medical Leave benefits, National Law Review, September 2022.
Explains the proposed changes to Paid Family and Medical Leave in the Massachusetts FY 2023 budget and the current state of the law.

Paid Family and Medical Leave overview, Mass. Dept. of Family and Medical Leave.
Information on paid family and medical leave for workers, including frequently asked questions.

Web sources for employers

Paid Family and Medical Leave for Massachusetts employers, Mass. Dept. of Family and Medical Leave.
A comprehensive page for Massachusetts employers. Includes information about employers’ obligations under the PFML law, as well as a practical guide to implementation.

Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave: what lies ahead, National Law Review, January 2019.
Summarizes key provisions of the law with clear information about effective dates.

Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave: 2021 end-of-year update, National Law Review, December 2021.
Lists changes to PFML beginning in 2021. Includes information on maximum allowed weekly benefit, contribution rates, and more.

Paid Family and Medical Leave exemption requests, registration, contributions, and payments, Mass. Dept. of Revenue.
Important information for employers from the Department of Revenue.

Print sources

Employee leave and accommodations law in Massachusetts, 5th ed., MCLE, 2022.

Labor and employment in Massachusetts, Lexis, loose-leaf, Chapter 6.

Massachusetts employment law, 5th ed., MCLE, loose-leaf, Chapters 17 and 20.

Your rights in the workplace by Sachi Barreiro, Nolo, 2018.


Last updated: October 14, 2022