top of page
  • Writer's picturePaul F. Keneally

New Employer Obligations in NYS: Paid Breaks for the Expression of Breast Milk and Paid Prenatal Care Leave

Woman holding baby

The New York State Budget was passed in late April 2024 and includes new duties for employers regarding employees expressing breast milk and needing time off for prenatal care. Employees expressing breast milk will receive a new thirty (30) minute paid break each workday and will be able to use existing paid break time or mealtime if more than thirty (30) minutes are needed. Employees can use this new benefit whenever reasonably needed for up to three (3) years following childbirth. Employees using this benefit are specifically protected from discrimination and retaliation by this new law, part of the amended subdivision 1 of Section 206-c of the New York Labor Law, which takes effect on June 19, 2024. Employers remain obligated to follow existing provisions of 206-c that a suitable location for expressing breast milk in the workplace be created and that notice of the law be provided at the time of hire, to mothers returning to work following the birth of a child, and annually.

Paid prenatal care is also now required as part of Labor Law Section 196-b, the New York Paid Sick and Safe Leave Law. The new law grants pregnant employees a separate, additional twenty (20) hours of paid leave for prenatal care during any 52-week period. Pregnant employees getting physical examinations, medical procedures, monitoring, testing, discussing their pregnancy with a health care provider, or receiving any other health care services related to the pregnancy may use the paid prenatal leave. The leave must be taken in hourly increments, is paid at the employee’s regular rate of pay, and any unused portion of the twenty (20) hours need not be paid out at the termination of employment. Employers are limited in the documentation they can request from employees about prenatal care and like the new expression of breast milk law, employees using the paid prenatal care benefit may not be discriminated or retaliated against for doing so.

If you have any questions about these new obligations or any Labor or Employment law issues, please contact Paul F. Keneally at 585-258-2882 or

84 views0 comments


bottom of page