2021 PFL information will be reflected soon!  Subscribe now to make sure you’re notified when it’s released.

Sheila McGarrigle
/ Categories: Benefits

How to Calculate PFL Benefits in 2020

October 15, 2019

PFL family

Since Paid Family Leave is being phased in over four years, it may be hard to remember how much time a covered employee can take and what the benefit levels are for that year.  In 2020, the benefit duration remains at 10 weeks (weekly or intermittently, more on that later) as it did in 2019, but the benefit amount has increased. 

So how do you calculate how much time an eligible employee can take with Paid Family Leave in 2020?  First, you need to know if you plan on taking PFL in full weeks or on intermittent leave (since Paid Family Leave can be taken in daily increments, such as every other Monday). 

Weekly Leave
Taking weekly leave can be relatively simple to figure out.  Here’s the 2020 benefit chart for eligible employees taking paid leave in weekly increments (regardless of full-time or part-time status):

Benefit stage
effective date*

Maximum length
of Paid Leave

Maximum benefit amount

Payable % of employee’s Average Weekly Wage (AWW)

To the maximum % of NY Average Weekly Wage (NYSAWW)**

Benefit maximum based on current
 NYSAWW  of $1,401.17**


10 weeks





Intermittent Leave
Taking PFL intermittently is where we’ve seen some confusion.  The benefit for eligible employees who take paid leave in daily increments is based on their average number of days worked per week during the last 8 weeks before taking paid leave.

  • Number of hours worked during those days has no influence on the maximum benefit.
    For example: a part-time employee and a full-time employee who both work on 5 days of the week are entitled to the same number of intermittent Paid Family Leave days.

Below is the 2020 benefit chart for employees taking paid leave intermittently, in daily increments:

Benefit stage effective date*

Maximum length of Paid Leave

Maximum average # of days worked/week

Maximum # of intermittent days

Employee’s daily benefit

To the Maximum % of NY Average Weekly Wage

$ Max based on current NY AWW  of $1,401.17**


10 weeks


60 days

AWW / days worked




To calculate how many intermittent days an eligible employee can take off in 2020, you need to look at the average number of days the employee worked in the prior 8 weeks before their Paid Family Leave begins:

Average # of days worked per week

2020 maximum number of intermittent days
















Intermittent leave gives employees the flexibility to accompany a sick family member to regular doctor visits or to help find creative ways of navigating childcare challenges during baby’s first year.

For example: Mom could take PFL time every Monday and Dad every Friday, leaving new parents with just 3 days of the work week to make childcare arrangements.


* While this is the anticipated phase-in schedule, New York State may delay increases at its discretion.
** NY Department of Labor releases the updated NYSAWW every March 31st of the prior applicable calendar year.  Past years’ maximum benefit amounts are based on prior NYSAWWs respectively.  The NYSAWW applicable to 2020 is $1,401.17=$72,860.84 annually.

This blog post is for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide legal counsel. Please consult with an appropriate professional for legal and compliance advice. Any PFL information is as of the blog post’s date stamp; it is based on the applicable statutes and regulation,  and may change as regulations evolve or NY State issues guidance regarding Paid Family Leave regulations. Have more questions? Email us at pflquestions@shelterpoint.com

Previous Article Calculating the Average Weekly Wage for Benefit/Claim Purposes in 2020
Next Article PFL Withholdings For 2020
10177 Rate this article:
No rating

Theme picker

Get the latest Paid Family Leave New York updates delivered to your inbox!