When the state of Connecticut introduced its Paid Family and Medical Leave act, it opened the door for business owners of any size to privatize their PFML coverage for cost savings. Connecticut business owners can save even more money by bundling Connecticut PFML benefits with ancillary benefits, including dental, vision, and Group Life / AD&D coverage.

Whether you’re writing Connecticut PFML for larger businesses or smaller companies ranging from 1 to 24 lives, The DBL Center is here to help.

Benefits go into effect January 1, 2022, but employers are considering their options for coverage through the state or a private plan, right now. The state of Connecticut has already started allowing employers to withhold payments for premiums. Businesses who wish to transfer to a private plan, effective July 1, 2021, have until June 30 to hold a vote and write a private policy.

DBL Center brokers can make it easy for their clients to write PFML in Connecticut by walking them through these three simple steps.

Step One: Prepare Employees to Vote on a Private Plan

Unlike New York or New Jersey – who waived the signature requirement to privatize NJ Temporary Disability Insurance benefits – the state of Connecticut requires employees to vote on and approve a private plan.

Employers are responsible for complying with voting requirements and procedures. The DBL Center has been working with our network of carriers to simplify the process of privatizing PFML in Connecticut.

Step Two: Create a Plain Language Guide for Connecticut PFML

At least two weeks prior to the vote, Connecticut employers must provide all employees with a written description of the proposed private plan in “plain language.” The “plain language guide” should be reasonably capable of being understood by the document’s recipients. The plan can include details about additional benefits, examples of acceptable claims or payouts based on employee pay, and a list of the types of health care providers accepted by the plan.

Any language or details about the plan must be:

  • Accurate
  • Complete
  • Non-coercive

The DBL Center offers a free, downloadable “Plain Language Template” that Connecticut employers, HR departments, and benefits managers can modify and share in advance of the vote.

The Plain Language Guide first explains that the Plan is being offered as an alternative to the Connecticut Paid Family & Medical Leave Insurance Program and gives all employees the same rights, protections and benefits as the state plan.

The Plain Language Guide describes:

  • Who is covered by the private plan
  • Benefits provided
  • “Qualifying reasons” to receive income replacement benefits under the plan
  • Duration and timing of benefits
  • Employee and employer contributions to the plan
  • Application process
  • Health care providers covered under the plan
  • Conditions covered by the plan
  • Rights regarding denial of benefits
  • Employer contact information for employees who have questions about the plan

Access the Plain Language Guide Template here.

Step Three: Vote and File the Proper Documents with the State

No sooner than two weeks after the employer distributes the Plain Language Guide, employees can vote on the plan. Employers can use an easy online survey tool or a simple, one-question, handwritten ballot that asks if an employee approves of the private plan.

Once the vote takes place, if the proposed private plan is approved by a 50% + 1 majority of all employees (not just those who voted), the employer must file an Insurance Declarations document with the state.

The DBL Center was one of the first in the industry to report on Connecticut PFML laws. We are here to help Connecticut insurance brokers tap into this lucrative recurring revenue stream as Connecticut employees reap the benefits of a generous paid family and medical leave policy.