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On April 20, 2024, Governor Hochul signed into law the 2024-2025 State Budget, which includes three key changes for New York employers:

  • Sunsetting of COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave Law (finally) – Effective July 31, 2025, employers will no longer have to provide additional job-protected leave for employees subject to a mandatory quarantine or isolation order due to COVID-19. As discussed more fully HERE, HERE, and HERE, New York enacted legislation in March 2020, requiring all employers to provide job-protected leave to employees subject to a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. This COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave was in addition to any other existing PTO, including New York State and City Paid Safe and Sick Leave. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) reduced its recommendations regarding quarantine periods several times over the last few years, the amount of paid leave available under this law, which depends on the size of the employer, has remained unchanged. On March 1, 2024, however, the CDC began treating COVID-19 like any other respiratory viral illness. Under this new guidance, people are no longer subject to a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation; rather, individuals may return to normal activities if their symptoms have been improving for at least 24 hours or if they have been fever-free for 24 hours. Perhaps prompted by this recent change, New York announced the repeal of the COVID-19 Paid Leave Law effective July 31, 2025.
  • Prenatal Leave for Pregnant Employees – Effective January 1, 2025, all employers must provide 20 hours of paid prenatal leave to employees each year. This leave can be taken for health care services received during or related to an employee’s pregnancy, such as physical examinations, medical procedures, monitoring and testing, and discussions with health care providers. Paid prenatal leave may be taken in hourly increments, and employees will receive their regular rate of pay when taking this leave. Please note that this leave is in addition to New York State and City Paid Safe and Sick Leave.
  • Paid Nursing Breaks – Effective June 19, 2024, employers must provide paid 30-minute breaks to express breast milk, and allow employees to use other existing paid break time or meal time for any time needed in excess of 30 minutes, each time the employee has to express breast milk for up to three years following the birth of a child. 

In order to comply with this new legislation, employers should review and update their handbooks, policies, and procedures. And, employers should train managers, supervisors, and human resources professionals on this new legislation. NFC will continue to track this law and report on any updates.  


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