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The Colorado & Family Leave Insurance Program Explained

family and medical leave insurance program

In the past, many families in Colorado had challenges paying for large medical expenses. As of 2023, only a few states across the country have these benefits in place for families. The Colorado family and medical leave insurance program ensures that all Colorado workers will have access to paid leave during circumstances that force them away from their jobs. The program will provide eligible Colorado workers with up to 12 weeks of benefits such as serious health conditions, bonding with a child, and needing to care for a loved one. 

Who is Covered Under the Colorado Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program? 

Nearly all Colorado employers with one or more employees working in Colorado will be required to participate in the Colorado family and medical leave insurance program. An employee’s coverage under the program depends on their status as an employee, as well as their employer’s financial standing and responsibilities. Those employees who work for an eligible Colorado business who have earned more than $2,500 over the last four quarters are eligible to be covered under the program. It is important to note that federal employees and employers are excluded from coverage as of 2023. 

How is the Colorado Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program Funded? 

The Colorado family and medical leave insurance program will be funded by payroll contributions from employers and employees beginning in 2023. These contributions will be divided between the two parties, with employers covering at least half the cost of premiums. If a Colorado business employs less than 10 people, that employer will not be required to contribute any premium, but must still commit to the employee portion of the premium. 

Insurance Program Plan Designs

The program provides up to 12 weeks of paid family medical leave. In circumstances where an employee encounters an especially serious health condition, an additional four weeks of leave. Fortunately for employees, Colorado recently rewrote the plan to allow for coverage up to 90% of the employee’s average weekly wage. Colorado is requiring that all employers offer family and medical leave insurance . If you have questions about employee benefits management in Colorado, our team here at Moody Insurance is your Colorado insurance expert. Our employee benefits consultants can create an insurance strategy specifically designed to meet employees’ needs. As a top independent insurance provider, our team can connect you to numerous top insurance providers to sculpt the plan that offers the best coverage. Contact our team today to learn more about how our unique approach to insurance strategy development can help you. 

Private Plan Exemptions 

Although the Colorado Paid and Family and Medical Leave Plan will be mandatory for all employees beginning in 2024, there will be an option for employers to meet the plan’s requirements through a private plan. Employers will need to prove that their private plan of choice provides equal or greater coverage than the FAMLI. It is important for both employees and employers to note that a private plan does not exempt employers from paying FAMLI premiums until the state of Colorado has reviewed and approved an employer’s private plan. A list of state-approved insurance carriers can be found on the Colorado government’s website here

While the Colorado family and medical leave insurance program is designed to cover a variety of family structures and circumstances, some may find that private insurance is a better option. In these cases, it can be difficult to determine which steps to take by yourself. Here at Moody Insurance, our team of insurance agents has extensive experience with helping our clients find the perfect personal and professional benefits plans that meet their needs. Contact our team today to get started

How does the Colorado FAMLI coordinate with other benefits? 

When looking for a medical program and insurance, many families and companies consider how their plans coordinate with other benefits like disability. Fortunately, FAMLI will run concurrently with any payment under a disability policy or separate internal policy. FAMLI offers additional benefits over short-term disability insurance, as it covers medical, family, and military contingency, while also protecting an employee’s job. Short-term disability insurance, on the other hand, does not protect an employee’s job and only covers a disability. If an employee is eligible for short-term disability insurance, FAMLI runs concurrently to enhance benefits and coverage. 

Private Plan vs State Plans 

When navigating the Colorado family and medical leave insurance program, it can be prudent for families to consider the difference between the private and state-funded plans. The two plans offer different coverage and cost options, and each may be better suited for certain situations. The private plan offers an advisory approach to insurance that is often considered better overall care than the more general state plan. The plan allows for several claim filing options which often results in an expedited claim filing process compared to the state plan. These plans can be customized to an employee’s specific needs, and their pricing is more reflective of an employee’s base pay. For these reasons, a private plan can be suitable for employees looking for a more comprehensive leave plan that works well with special circumstances such as long-term serious injuries. 

The state Colorado family and medical leave insurance program, on the other hand, is an easier path that has a generally more efficient process. Many states have limited fluctuations in pricing for their state plans, which can make estimating premiums much easier. While the state plan offers a more streamlined process, its “one size fits all” approach can be limiting. Prefunding contributions from employees can be costly, and long customer service lines and leave processes can make filing insurance claims challenging. 

How to Prepare for FAMLI 

When preparing for FAMLI, you should first determine how the plan will apply to your business. This will include considering how many employees you have, which percentage of employees are full time, and what costs you will cover as a business. The costs you cover will help determine your premium liability and plan options. Once you have determined which plan you will choose, you should prioritize updating your HR manuals and contacting your employees about their new family and medical leave coverage. Be sure you are ready to collect premiums from your employees once your plan has been set up and approved. 

Contact Moody Insurance today 

Moody Insurance has been serving as a reliable employee benefits consultant for Colorado businesses for years. No matter which industry you are a part of, our team has the expertise and skills necessary to ensure a smooth transition to implementing the Colorado family and medical leave insurance program. Your final step in the FAMLI process will be registering with the FAMLI division. Our team here at Moody Insurance can help you complete this crucial final step and ensure every part of your FAMLI process is as smooth as possible. Call us today at 303.824.6600 or complete our contact form to send us an email and one of our team members will be in touch soon.

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Moody Insurance is here to help provide you with solutions to your personal, business or employee benefits insurance questions. Please fill out the form or call us at 303.824.6600.

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