January 25, 2021
Estimating the Costs of President Biden’s COVID-19 Paid Leave Proposal
President Biden is proposing to extend and expand paid sick, family, and medical leave, which is estimated to cover an additional 68 to 106 million private-sector workers plus 2 million federal workers. In a new analysis, AAF’s Director of Human Welfare Policy Tara O’Neill Hayes calculates how much these benefits would cost to the federal government and large employers.
The paid leave proposal included in President Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package would provide much more generous benefits than are currently available and would make those benefits available to tens of millions more workers. It is estimated that the cost to the federal government to cover these benefits could be between $132.0 billion and $154.6 billion. Large employers, who would be required to provide benefits at their own expense, could face additional costs of between $72.3 billion and $124.6 billion.