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18 July 2019

New York Farm Labor Bill: What It Means for DBL/PFL

The Farm Laborers Fair Labor Practices Act Extends NY Disability and Paid Family Leave to Farm Workers.

New York Farm Labor Bill: What It  Means for DBL/PFL

On July 17, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed bill A8419, the Farm Laborers Fair Labor Practices Act, which protects farm worker rights including overtime, statutory disability and paid family leave coverage. 

This new law amends Section 14 of the Disability Benefits Law and Paid Family Leave to reflect that “service as farm laborers” is no longer excluded from statutory disability (DBL) and Paid Family Leave (PFL) coverage effective January 1, 2020.

This means, employers will be required to cover farm workers who are not otherwise excluded under DBL/PFL and can include those employees or crew who cultivate the soil, raise or harvest agricultural commodities, as well as shearing, caring for and management of livestock, poultry or dairy.

New York Disability still excludes, for example:

  • casual employment and the first forty-five days of extra employment of employees not regularly in employment as otherwise defined herein;
  • services performed for the state, a municipal corporation, local governmental agency, other political subdivision or public authority;
  • employment subject to the federal railroad unemployment insurance act;
  • service performed on or as an officer or member of the crew of a vessel on the navigable water of the United States or outside the United States; and
  • service during all or any part of the school year or regular vacation periods as a part-time worker of any person actually in regular attendance during the day time as a student in an elementary or secondary school.

For a detailed list and more information on excluded classes of employees and exempt employers, read our article “Exempt Employers, Excluded Employees, And Voluntary Coverage” on our PFL educational blog. Since Paid Family Leave is a rider to DBL, the same exemptions and exclusions apply.

To find out more about part-timers and temporary employees, check out our “Top 3 Must See — Part-Time, Seasonal, And Contract Employee Questions."

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Photo Source:  Office of the Governor of New York




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