*not sponsored or affiliate content, original from Morristown Minute
To make planning a little easier for birthing parents, NJDOL created a tool to help parents estimate the start and end dates of state-backed maternity benefits.
Last week NJ Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo announced the Maternity Coverage Timeline Tool, a new tool that provides expecting parents with guidance about coverage periods for Temporary Disability Insurance and Family Leave Insurance.
The tool empowers parents by providing them with a personalized timeline estimate of benefit coverage periods.
Developed through a collaboration between the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development and the New Jersey State Office of Innovation, the tool helps expecting parents plan when and how to take their maternity leave.
By asking parents a short series of questions, the tool provides start and end dates for leave tailored to their personal situation and preferences.
“I am incredibly proud of the partnership between the Department of Labor and the Office of Innovation to expand utilization of our state’s paid family leave benefits,” said First Lady Tammy Murphy. “Making it easier for New Jersey families to plan for and experience one of life’s most precious moments through the Maternity Coverage Tool supports one of the recommendations in the Nurture NJ Maternal and Infant Health Strategic Plan and furthers our efforts toward making New Jersey the safest, most equitable place in the nation to deliver and raise a baby.”
“This tool is a small step in a broader effort to provide New Jerseyans support when it matters the most,” said Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo. “We want to empower parents to better plan for the arrival of the newest member of their family. Doing so requires tools and resources that combine simplicity and personalization, and the Maternity Coverage Timeline Tool is just the latest example of that principle. As we push forward to modernize resources and services, we will continue to center our efforts around the people we serve.”
“My organization meets many expectant and new mothers who are worried about how they will make ends meet as they recover from their birth and bond with their newborns. This tool is an effective way of using technology to simplify and personalize a process that can feel overwhelming, and will greatly help new moms navigate the paid leave programs that New Jersey makes available to them,” said Sarah Sternbach, director of social services for the Lakewood Resource and Referral Center. “It is wonderful to witness up close the passion this administration has for pursuing innovative ways of helping all New Jerseyans at each stage of their lives.”
“I love it,” said Grace Tien, a parent from Highland Park who shared insights that informed the tool’s development. “I love that the tool gives you a visual overview of what to expect. By just entering a due date and answering a few questions it takes out a lot of the guesswork. Getting actual dates in front of you to help plan everything is a big deal. With this, I’m not worried about keeping track of different details or making a mistake in calculations.”
The Timeline Tool is currently in open beta and may continue to undergo further testing and development.
The tool estimates coverage through the state, therefore it does not include paid leave an individual might have through their employment, such as a private short-term disability plan or vacation/sick time.
Nearly 7,000 workers have already used the tool during its initial phase-in period.
The link to the tool: myleavebenefits.nj.gov/timeline.
NJDOL and the Office of Innovation would like to hear about your user experience with the tool. Any individuals with feedback are welcome to share it at this link: https://forms.gle/kNRTQpsW9ZgGwpzi8.
Most people who work in NJ qualify for paid leave benefits. To find out if you are eligible, click here.