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23 April 2024

Proposed NY DBL Benefit Increase Legislation Not Included in NY State Budget

No increase in benefits set for NY’s Disability Benefits Law

Proposed NY DBL Benefit Increase Legislation Not Included in NY State Budget

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In January 2024, we reported on the efforts of Governor Kathy Hochul to increase the Disability Benefits Law (DBL) benefit as part of her proposed budget for 2025, which would have been the first increase since 1989. The final budget, as passed, does not include legislation enabling the proposed DBL increase. This means, for now, there are no changes to the DBL benefit.

Business as Usual for NY DBL

The current DBL benefit provides a payment of 50% of eligible wages to a maximum of $170 per week for a maximum of 26 weeks depending on the particulars of the claim. Benefit payments start after a required, unpaid 7-day waiting period. 

Employers continue withholdings as usual – as a reminder: they can deduct to a maximum of $31.20 per year from an employee’s paycheck to fund this program. Posting notices also remain unchanged, and employers need to continue displaying the posting notice in well-travelled areas of their workplaces. 

Will the NY DBL benefit cap ever increase?

We will keep you posted should lawmakers decide to introduce a bill for the remainder of this legislative session in an effort to provide New Yorkers with higher DBL benefits, or if other related developments arise in the future. Be sure to sign up for updates to stay informed on DBL increase developments.

Other Paid Leave Updates Included in the NYS Budget

While legislation to increase the NY DBL benefit was not included in the FY2025 NYS Budget, there are a few noteworthy updates related to paid leave.

Prenatal Personal Leave

New York is the first state in the nation to mandate prenatal leave starting in 2025. This new type of leave will be available through New York’s Sick Leave Act; not as a new benefit under Paid Family Leave (PFL) or DBL.

Once in effect, Prenatal Leave provides:

  • Up to 20 hours of paid protected leave to be used for healthcare services during pregnancy, including:
    • Physical exams
    • Medical procedures
    • Monitoring and testing
    • Discussions with a health care provider related to pregnancy
  • Leave that can be taken in hourly increments

Learn more about the NY Sick Leave Act and how it compares to NY DBL/PFL here.

COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave to Sunset in 2025

The approved NYS budget also established a sunset date of July 31, 2025, for the COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave Law, which has been in place since March 2020. The sunset provision will end employer sick pay obligations under the NY Paid Sick Leave Act and quarantine leave benefits under DBL/PFL as of July, 31, 2025.

 

 

This material is for informational purposes only; it is not the same as official statements of position contained in the law and/or regulations and is not intended to provide legal counsel or advice. Please consult with an appropriate professional for legal, compliance, HR, tax, or any other specific advice.

Any Disability Benefits Law (DBL) and/or Paid Family Leave (PFL) information is based on the applicable statutes and regulations, and may change as regulations evolve or NY State issues guidance regarding DBL/PFL law and regulations. In the event of conflicting information with the policy and/or rider(s), the policy and/or rider(s) will take precedence over what is shown in this material. Policies are governed by Article 9 of Workers Compensation Board (WCB) Law (New York State Disability and Paid Family Leave Benefits Law). All DBL/PFL policies are New York-only products and are underwritten by ShelterPoint Life Insurance Company, a NY-domiciled carrier.

The ShelterPoint family of companies operates under the “ShelterPoint” name strictly as a marketing name, and no legal significance is expressed or implied. The ShelterPoint family of companies consists of ShelterPoint Life Insurance Company, a NY-domiciled carrier, and its wholly-owned subsidiary ShelterPoint Insurance Company, a FL-domiciled carrier, depending on the state (see our Geographic & Jurisdictional Notice here). ShelterPoint is a registered service mark.

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