ALERT | 12.01.2022 | 8:00 a.m.
My FAMLI+ Employer is Live! Business registration is now open! Employers will use My FAMLI+ Employer to manage their FAMLI business requirements. Read more about My FAMLI+ Employer!
ALERT | 11.03.2022 | 3:30 p.m.
Employers are required to notify their employees about the FAMLI program by January 1, 2023. The Required Program Notice, Paycheck Stuffer, and the 2023 Handbook are located in the FAMLI Employer Toolkit.
What happens in your workers' lives can impact your business at any time. Car accidents, serious illnesses like cancer, welcoming a new child — some life events do not wait until we are ready for them. The FAMLI program can help you be ready to rise to the occasion when your employees need you the most.
Employers and their employees are both responsible for funding the program and may split the cost 50/50. The premiums are set to 0.9% of the employee’s wage, with 0.45% paid by the employer and 0.45% paid by the employee.
Businesses with nine or fewer employees do not have to contribute to the program but do need to remit their employees' share (0.45%) of the premium on behalf of employees each quarter. This can be done through a simple payroll deduction. Employers are required to begin these premium deductions on January 1, 2023. All employers, regardless of size, will be required to register with the FAMLI Division before the first premium payment is due at the end of the first quarter of 2023. Benefits will become available to workers starting in January 2024.
Now’s the time to prepare your business for FAMLI.
Use our premium and benefits calculator to estimate your premiums. Premiums are paid on wages up to the Federal Social Security Wage Cap ($160,200 for earnings in 2023). Benefits are calculated on a sliding scale using the individual's average weekly wage from the previous five calendar quarters in relation to the average weekly wage for the state of Colorado ($1,350.55 as of July 2022) and may increase over time.
Disclaimer: these calculations should only be used as estimates and may not be equal to the exact amount of your premium or benefit payment.
While FAMLI benefits won’t be available to employees until 2024, businesses must begin collecting premiums starting on January 1, 2023 through a simple payroll deduction. Most Colorado businesses will need to begin deducting FAMLI premiums from all employees on their payroll, including full-time, part-time and seasonal. Employers cannot collect missed premiums from employees in later pay periods. It is important to know employees are never required to pay more than 50% of the total premium. By law, the FAMLI Division Director is required to recalculate the premium rate every year past 2025 and determine if adjustments to the premium rate need to be made. Current Colorado law caps the premium at 1.2% meaning it will not be assessed any higher than this amount.
Responsibilities Under the FAMLI Statute
|9 or fewer employees||
|10 or more employees||
|Voluntarily Participating Self-Employed||
|Participating Local Government Employer||✓||✓|
|Voluntarily Participating Local Government Employee||
|Local Government Employer who has Voted to Opt Out||
|Employer with Approved Private Plan||
Important FAMLI Matters
The FAMLI definition of included and excluded wages mirrors the Unemployment definition of included and excluded wages. Employers who are exempt from paying unemployment premiums are NOT exempt from paying FAMLI premiums. These employers should refer to the following list to determine what counts as wages.
Types of Payments that are Considered Wages
WAGES (subject to FAMLI Premiums)
NOT WAGES (exempt from FAMLI Premiums)
Payments defined as wages under the Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA)
Employee contribution to 401(k) or IRC 408 simplified Retirement Plans
Disability payments paid in first 6 months after an employee worked for you
Employer contributions to a Medical Savings Account
Employee-matching contributions into IRC 219 simplified employee pension plan
Payments made by public school or 501(c)(3) into annuity contract or by governmental entity into deferred compensation plan because of a salary-reduction agreement
Payments for personal services, including anything other than cash that has cash value, like a housing allowance, (except payments to agricultural or domestic workers, which must be cash to be wages)
Employee contributions to a Salary Reduction Simplified Employee Pension Plan (SARSEP)
125 Cafeteria Plan if cash is chosen
Payments for moving expenses if deduction is allowed in the federal Internal Revenue Code (IRC), IRC 127
Group Term Life Insurance
Employer contribution to 401(k) or IRC 408 simplified Retirement Plans, all PERA contributions
Amounts paid or incurred for a dependent care plan (IRC 129) or a educational assistance program (IRC 127)
Employee Contributions to a Medical Savings Account
Employer contributions into IRC 219 simplified employee pension plan
Payments into a deferred compensation plan if you are a government entity
Value of meals or lodging furnished by employer if such items are excluded from income as described in IRC 119
Employer contributions to a Salary Reduction Simplified Employee Pension Plan(SARSEP)
125 Cafeteria Plan if qualified benefit chosen
When it comes to counting how many employees your business has, your headcount will be calculated by counting the number of employees you have on your payroll for a total of 20 or more calendar workweeks in the preceding calendar year. Employers will report their headcount during the initial registration process and once a year thereafter during the first quarter of each year.
Businesses that report having ten or more employees who worked during 20 or more weeks in all of 2022 will be responsible for sending in the full 0.9% premium for all four quarters in 2023.
The graphic below visualizes this 20-calendar-week concept in four examples.
The first two employees are seasonal workers who both work during 20 or more weeks throughout the calendar year. Note that they both work intermittent schedules throughout the year and may only work one or two days during some work weeks, but they are still included in your headcount.
The third full time worker worked for more than 20 weeks, so would also be counted, even though you can see this worker left the company in August.
The final full time worker in the red box, let’s say this worker was hired to replace the previous one, would not count toward your total headcount because he only worked during 19 weeks of the year.
It’s important to note that employers are responsible for deducting and remitting premiums for every employee as soon as they are hired. This 20-week concept should only be used to determine whether or not your business is categorized as having 10 or more employees and thus responsible for sending in the full 0.9% premium once a quarter.
When it comes to counting remote employees, if the employer has more than ten TOTAL employees–even if they work outside of Colorado–the employer will still be responsible for sending in the full 0.9% premium once a quarter.
In the example below, the employer would be responsible for both the 0.45% employee share and the 0.45% employer share for the three employees who work in Colorado because it has 12 total employees.
National employers who have employees based all over the country will need to use their total employee headcount to determine its premium responsibility for its Colorado-based employees.
As you can see on the map below, the employer has 15 total employees, so it will be required to send in the full 0.9% premium for the eight employees who are based in Colorado.
Employers will have several payment type options to submit their quarterly premium payments to the FAMLI Division:
- Online Payments: Employers can log into their My FAMLI+ Employer account and pay their premiums online.
- ACH Credit
- Payment by Check
- Online Bill Pay
Instructions for paying by ACH Credit, Check and Online Bill Pay will be shared in the coming weeks.
Employers are required to submit wage data to the Division once a quarter. This will determine the employer’s total premium payment for the quarter. All of this will be done using our online employer services portal, My FAMLI+ Employer. (My FAMLI+ Employer is expected to launch at the end of 2022.)
Within My FAMLI+ Employer, employers will have options to submit wage data to the Division:
- Manually input wage data for each employee individually.
- Bulk upload wage data for all employees by uploading a file within My FAMLI+ Employer. Please refer to our Wage Reporting File Specifications and use one of the following single filer wage report sample templates to build your wage report files:
- Submit wage reports using API technology. Please refer to our Wage Reporting API Specifications for instructions.
Private businesses have the option of using an approved private plan that offers the same or greater benefits and protections as the FAMLI program. Employers considering to offer a private plan (including self insurance models) are not exempt from paying FAMLI premiums until the FAMLI Division has reviewed and approved the private plan or self insurance documentation in accordance with the Division’s private plan regulations.
All employers must register with the FAMLI program, and will be required to pay premiums beginning January 1, 2023. Employers can request a refund for premiums paid in 2023 if they get a private plan approved by the Division with an effective date on or before January 1, 2024.
The FAMLI Division anticipates opening up the application for private plan approval in the first quarter of 2023. Instructions on that application process are forthcoming. Read the adopted private plan rules here.
Most Colorado workers will be eligible for FAMLI benefits, including self-employed individuals and independent contractors. Participation for self-employed workers is optional. If you do decide to opt into FAMLI as a self-employed worker, you must agree to participate by paying premiums and reporting your income for a minimum of three years in order to avoid only opting in only when the need for leave is foreseeable. There is no enrollment period for self-employed workers. You can opt in any time and apply for leave any time once benefits become available in 2024. No action is required until then. We have more details on how self-employer workers count their earnings on our Individuals & Families page.