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How do I apply for paid family leave?

Step 1: Let your employer know that you will be taking leave.

If you know in advance that you will be using paid family leave, let your employer know you plan to take paid family leave at least 30 days before you intend to start your leave. If 30 days advance notice is not possible, for example in the case of a family member’s medical emergency, let your employer know as soon as possible.

Step 2: Find out who your employer’s paid family leave insurance carrier is.

Next, ask your employer who their paid family leave insurance carrier is. You can ask your supervisor or, if applicable, your employer’s Human Resources or payroll department. You can also look up who your employer’s paid family leave insurance carrier is here. If you still cannot identify the insurance carrier, call the New York State Paid Family Leave hotline at (844) 337-6303.

Step 3: Get a claim form.

To apply, you will need a paid family leave claim form for the type of leave you will be taking: bonding leave, family care leave, or military family leave. Your employer or their insurance carrier should be able to provide these forms or you can download them from the state website.

Step 4: Fill out the employee section of the claim form.

Fill out the section of the claim form for employees (PFL 1-Part A) and make a copy for your records.

Step 5: Give the form to your employer.

Give the form to your employer. They will have to provide information relevant to your claim, such as how long you have been employed and how much you earn. Your employer is required to complete the employer information and return the form to you within 3 business days. If your employer does not return the form to you, give us a call at 1-833-NEED-ABB.

Step 6: Get documentation of the need for leave.

As part of your application to your paid family leave insurance carrier, you will need to submit documentation of your need for leave. The application will have instructions for the right type of documentation to provide.

For example, if you are taking leave to bond with a new child, you will need to fill out the relevant part of the form and submit documentation of the birth, adoption, or foster placement. If you are taking leave to care for a seriously ill or injured family member, you will need to fill out the relevant part of the form and your family member’s healthcare provider will need to fill out the rest of the form. Your family member will also need to sign a release form authorizing the healthcare provider to provide this information.

Step 7: Submit application to paid family leave insurance carrier.

Once you have completed these steps, submit your application to your employer’s paid family leave insurance provider. The insurance carrier must either pay or deny your claim within 18 days of receiving your application and must notify you if there are problems with your application. You do not need to wait for your claim to be approved before starting your leave. If you do not hear from your insurance carrier within 18 days, give us a call at 1-833-NEED-ABB.

For a printable PDF version of this page, click here.


Call A Better Balance if you have any questions about your rights at work.

Our free hotline can provide you with information about your rights at work (or refer you to another attorney or legal organization in your area). The information provided here or in response to a Hotline inquiry does not constitute legal advice and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. If ABB chooses to represent you, then a retainer will be signed setting out the scope of the representation.

Call 1-833-NEED-ABB

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