Since the summer of 2019, the Department of Family and Medical Leave (DFML) and the Division of Insurance (DOI) have engaged the public by holding a series of PMFL private plan standards listening and drafting sessions.

On April 3, 2020, the DOI  released Filing Guidance 2020 – A: Paid Family and Medical Leave. Previously, insurance carriers issued an Insurance Declaration Document (IDD) to employers as proof of satisfying PFML insurance requirements. Coverage through private insurance is required to commence no later than January 1, 2021 (for medical leave insurance) and July 1, 2021 (for family leave insurance). Employers that qualify for an exemption are exempt from remitting contributions to the Family and Employment Security Trust Fund.

This new Filing Guidance includes a Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) Policy Template, which outlines the standard provisions that PFML private insurance policies must contain in order to meet the exemption requirements of M.G.L. c. 175M, § 11. The guidance documents are the result of a collaboration between the DOI, the DFML, and life and accident insurance stakeholders to ensure consistency in PFML insurance products offered in the Massachusetts employer marketplace.

Private Plan Updated Guidance:

  • Insurance carriers will submit their policy forms to the DOI for review on or before June 3, 2020.
  • After the DOI reviews the policy forms using a PFML Policy Forms Checklist, insurance carriers will issue policies to their employer policyholders.
  • Previously approved exemption applicants will be required to verify the use of an approved policy during their renewal period. The DFML will request policy form numbers from employers at the time of exemption renewal and will update its website to describe these procedures at a later date.
  • Employers that have secured PFML private insurance coverage but have not filed an application for an exemption must complete a Request for Exemption using the Department of Revenue’s web-based filing system, MassTaxConnect. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and specific deadlines and timelines are explained further on our website.
  • For employers filing for a new exemption who have not yet received a policy form number from an insurance carrier, please submit an IDD signed by both a representative of the employer and a representative of the insurance carrier confirming sufficient PFML private plan insurance coverage.
  • For those employers filing for a new exemption that were issued a policy form number from its insurance carrier prior to filing the Request for Exemption, please submit an IDD with the policy form number listed on the document or provide the policy form number when submitting the exemption application on MassTaxConnect.
  • The DOI does not regulate self-insured employers. Self-insured employers should not make submissions to the DOI. However, employers seeking a self-insured exemption may use the standards listed in the PFML Policy Template to ensure that their self-administered PFML private plans comply with the PFML statute and regulations.

For more information please contact Public Affairs Manager, Christopher McDermott, at or VISIT HERE.