New York Governor Hochul signed numerous employment-related bills during the 2021 legislative session. This article provides an overview of key changes taking effect in the near term and highlights new compliance obligations affecting employers with New York operations in the coming year and beyond.

Sequoia One clients are encouraged to reach out to their dedicated HR Business partner with any questions and to discuss updating their policies as necessary.

Regulation / Effective DateNew RequirementsEmployer Action Items
12 NYCRR 380-2.5

Final Rule for Intermittent New York Paid Family Leave (NY PFL)

January 1, 2022
• Clarifies the number of intermittent leave days eligible employees can take. Qualifying employees that work at least 5 days a week can take a maximum of 60 days of intermittent leave per year.• Update existing policies and procedures related to NY PFL;
• Train supervisory and human resources staff on NY PFL requirements.
Regulation / Effective DateNew RequirementsEmployer Action Items
Senate Bill 4394

Whistleblower Protection

January 26, 2022
• Extends whistleblower protections to independent contractors and former employees;
• Clarifies that whistleblower retaliation includes actual or threatened adverse employment actions, threats against a former employee’s current or future employment, and threatening to contact immigration authorities.
• Consider revising any existing training material for handling retaliation claims;
• Review internal complaint procedures to ensure compliance.
Regulation / Effective DateNew RequirementsEmployer Action Items
Senate Bill S2628 (AB 430)

Notice to Employee of Electronic Monitoring

May 7, 2022
• Requires written notice upon hiring to all employees, informing them of the types of electronic monitoring that may occur;
• The notice must be in writing or electronic format and must be acknowledged in writing or electronically by the employee;
• Employers are required to separately post a notice in a conspicuous location. The state does not provide a model notice for this purpose.
• Employers who are found to violate the law are subject to civil penalties of $500 for a first offense, $1,000 for a second offense, and $3,000 for the third and each subsequent offense.
• Employers that monitor employees’ telephone calls or computer activities, must distribute notice to existing employees and to all new hires once this law takes effect;
• Employers should provide a stand-alone policy and acknowledgment form to their employees to satisfy this new requirement;
• Employers are also encouraged to include any policies related to electronic monitoring in the employee handbook.
Regulation / Effective DateNew RequirementsEmployer Action Items
Senate Bill 2928-A

Expansion New York Paid Family Leave (NY PFL)

January 1, 2023
• Prior to the amendment, NY PFL defined “family member” to mean a child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, spouse, or domestic partner;
• Now “family member” will have an expanded definition that will include “siblings,” defined as a biological or adopted sibling, a half sibling or stepsibling.
• Revise policy and procedures governing NY PFL to account for the family member definition update prior to the January 1, 2023 effective date;
• Train managers and those responsible for administering NY PFL.

Additional Resources

Disclaimer: This content is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, medical or tax advice. It provides general information and is not intended to encompass all compliance and legal obligations that may be applicable. This information and any questions as to your specific circumstances should be reviewed with your respective legal counsel and/or tax advisor as we do not provide legal or tax advice. Please note that this information may be subject to change based on legislative changes. © 2021 Sequoia Benefits & Insurance Services, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Lizet Ramirez — Lizet is a Client Compliance Manager for Sequoia One, where she works with our clients to optimize and streamline benefits compliance. In her free time, Lizet enjoys live music, travel, hiking and spa days.