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Paid Family and Medical Leave coverage for self-employed individuals

If you’re a self-employed individual, you can choose to participate in the Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) program.

Table of Contents

General eligibility

As a self-employed individual, you may elect coverage under the state's Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) program. If you do so, you will be responsible for paying the full contribution rate for both family and medical leave. For 2022, the contribution rate is 0.68%. For 2023, the contribution rate will be reduced to 0.63%. Once you've elected coverage, you won't be eligible for benefits until you've made the required contributions for at least 2 of your last 4 completed calendar quarters.

If you are a 1099-MISC employee for a business that does not cover contractors for PFML because 1099-MISC employees make up less than 50% of the business’s workforce, you can choose to opt-in to the PFML program. If you own a business and pay yourself through a W-2, you are an employee of that business and will be considered part of your covered workforce under PFML.

    How to opt into PFML as a self-employed individual

    To opt into PFML, DFML will require you to complete and submit the Department's Self-Employed Notice of Election.

    When the required documentation is complete, you will need to fill out this form to notify DFML of your request to opt into PFML and submit your Notice of Election.

    After DFML receives your request and the required documentation, you will receive a formal notice informing you of the DFML's decision.

    Once enrolled in the program, you'll be required to remain enrolled for at least 3 years. During this time, you'll be required to file quarterly earnings reports and submit the full quarterly contribution payments for both family and medical leave based on your earnings.

    Additional Resources

    Steps for once you’ve been approved to opt into PFML

    Once you have been approved to opt into PFML, you will need to create a PFML account through the Massachusetts Department of Revenue’s MassTaxConnect system. For step by step guidance, please visit: Opt in and contribute to Paid Family and Medical Leave as a self-employed individual

    Eligibility for benefits

    To be eligible for benefits for 2022, you will have to:

    • Have earned $5,700 during the last 4 completed calendar quarters, and at least 30 times more than how much you would be eligible to get each week from your Paid Family Medical Leave benefits

    • Pay the full 0.68% contribution rate for both family and medical leave for at least 2 of your last 4 completed calendar quarters before claiming benefits (This rate adjusts annually)

    Learn how to apply for paid leave benefits if you are self-employed.

    Additional Resources

    Contact

    Phone

    Get answers to your questions in English, Español, and Português. Translation services for up to 240+ languages are also available. (833) 344-7365

    Department of Family and Medical Leave - Hours of operation: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

    Fraud Reporting Hotline: (857) 366-7201

    Department of Family and Medical Leave - Hours of operation: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m - 5 p.m.

    For questions about contributions and exemptions: (617) 466-3950

    Department of Revenue - Hours of operation: Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

    Date published: August 17, 2022
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