The New Jersey Senate approved a bill that grants six weeks of leave at reduced pay to workers who stay at home to care for a new child or sick relative. According to the Paid Family Leave Act (A873) workers can collect up to two-thirds of their pay to a maximum of $524 a week. For a new child, the leave must be taken within 12 months of the child’s birth or adoption, and the worker must give 30 days’ notice prior to taking leave. To care for an immediate family member (which means a child, parent or spouse — no second cousins, grandmothers or great-uncles), the employee must give 15 days’ notice.
Employers can require workers to use up to two weeks of available vacation time, sick time or personal days before they are eligible for paid family leave. Companies with over 50 employees need to hold the job for the employee, under 50 workers there is no such requirement.
There will be a new withholding payroll tax, similar to the disability payroll tax, effective January 1, 2009. The tax rate will be .09 percent on the first $27,700 of wages and increase to .12 percent the next year. And if it follows a similar trend as the disability tax, it will go up every year after that.