In this portion of the series we will discuss which employers are required to participate in the FAMLI program and to what extent. We will also go over employer requirements as it relates to the FAMLI Act regarding notices, privacy, record storage etc. We can't go into everything but will try to give you a good overview of what information you may need to know at this time in preparation for January 1, 2023.
Who must participate and who is exempt?
All Colorado employers are required to participate except
Local government employers
Federal government employers
Employers with an approved private plan
Employers, including local government employers who decline participation and employers with an approved private plan, must register with the Division via 'MyFAMLI+ Employer' by January 1, 2023 or when they become an employer, whichever is later.
Employers that cease business operations in Colorado or otherwise cease to employ Colorado employees must notify the Division within 10 business days.
Employer Remittance of Premiums
Premiums will be submitted via the 'MyFAMLI+ Employer' online system
The Division will notify employers (electronically or postal mail) of their expected premiums on the first business day of the calendar month the premium is due to be paid. Employers may assign a business representative to receive notifications.
Premiums must be paid not less than quarterly and include all premiums with respect to wages paid for employment in all payroll periods that end within the calendar quarter
Premiums will be due no later than the last day of the month immediately following the end of the calendar quarter for which the premiums accrued
Employers may only deduct the maximum allowable employee share of the premium for a pay period and will not deduct the employee share of premium for a pay period where there is a lack of sufficient wages to cover the premium.
If an employer fails to deduct the maximum allowable share of premium from wages for a pay period, the employer can not deduct this amount from a future paycheck of the employee for a different pay period.
Employers who are not required to pay the employer portion of premium (employers with less than 10 employees) must still remit the employees' share of premium.
Employers are required to submit wage reports to the Division on the same quarterly schedule as they submit premiums.
Employers who fail to submit wage reports may be assessed fines of up to $50.00 per employee whose wages were not reported
Employers are required to post a Division created program notice that details program requirements, benefits, claims process, payroll deduction requirements, the right to job protection and benefits continuation in a prominent location in the workplace. Employers must also notify employees of the program, in writing, and upon learning of an employee experiencing an event that triggers eligibility. Must be posted by January 1, 2023. English Notice Spanish Notice
*Employers who fail to post the program notice may not punish or discipline an employee for failing to provide notice to an employer under FAMLI regulations.
Employers may require FAMLI benefits to run concurrently or otherwise coordinated with payment made or leave allowed under the terms of a disability policy, including a disability policy contained within an employment contract, or a separate bank of time off solely for the purpose of paid family and medical leave. The employer must give its employees written notice of this requirement.
Employer Record Keeping Requirements
Records and documents relating to medical certifications, recertifications, or medical histories of employees or employees' family members created for the purposes of FAMLI must be maintained as confidential medical records in separate files/records from personnel files.
Records and documents created for FAMLI containing family or genetic information as defined by GINA shall be maintained in accordance with the confidentiality requirements of Title II of GINA.
If the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is applicable, records should be maintained in conformance with ADA confidentiality requirements.
Employers may not request information from the Division that is not absolutely necessary for benefit coordination and such requests may constitute discrimination, retaliation, and/or interference.
Information Pertaining to Local Governments
Local government employers are not required to participate in the FAMLI program however they will be required to follow processes laid out in FAMLI regulations before successfully opting out.
Local government employers will be required to formally notify the Division in writing and provide both the date of the vote and the decision to decline participation
Vote by local government governing body
* Public notice must be given, in the same manner as any other business, before testimony prior to the vote.
* Local government employees must be notified in writing prior to the vote and provided information regarding the voting process and the opportunity to submit comments through a public process.
* Within 30 days following a local government declination vote, the local government must provide its employees with a written individual notice of the declination vote and the impact towards FAMLI or other paid leave insurance coverage. Notices must also contain the following:
- Must explain, at a minimum, the differences between benefits being offered by the FAMLI program and any other paid leave plan offered by the government
- Must also state which employees, if any, are eligible for job protection under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) benefits or other local provisions
-Must contain information regarding the right of local government employees to voluntarily opt into FAMLI benefits and the contact information of the Division
* Local government employers must display the notice in a conspicuous and accessible place in each establishment where employees are employed or if there is no physical workplace then electronically or conspicuous posting in a web-based or app-based platform
* Notices and posters will be in English and in any language representing the first language spoken by at least 5% of the local government employer's workforce and be provided by the Division. Local governments are responsible for requesting printed materials and interpretation needs other than English or Spanish.
A declination vote will not take into effect with a resulting change in coverage until at least 180 days after the vote
A declination vote is not permanent and must be reconsidered and the Division notified every 8 years (however governing body may reconsider yearly)
Local government employers that have previously declined participation and then subsequently elect or return to coverage must remain in the program for a minimum of 3 fiscal years corresponding to the date the elected coverage began
This is just a generalized review of local government responsibilities in relation to the FAMLI Act. For much more detailed information specific to local governments, go HERE.
This is for educational / informational purposes only (Disclaimer) It is your responsibility to verify any and all information provided.