Maternity Leave Options & Benefits for Self-Employed Mom?*

I am looking for updated information. All the posts I have found are really old.

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If you're self-employed, you are hopefully paying into the CA Voluntary Plan Disability Insurance Program through the EDD, which covers disability and paid family leave for those who are self-employed. Benefits are based on your highest paid quarter in the past year. If you haven't opted into this program yet and are newly self-employed, you may still be able to begin paying in now and a quarter of your wages under your former employer can also be counted. If you have been self-employed for over a year but haven't paid into the program, you unfortunately don't have a lot of options, although it's still worth opting in now if you will be working for at least another few months, because you can use the paid family leave any time in the baby's first year. (Disability coverage is only for 6-8 weeks after your child's birth.) The EDD website has instructions on how to set up your account and on how to begin paying in if you aren't already doing so. Congratulations!

I agree with what the previous poster said, and would add two things. #1) You have to start paying into the program two quarters (they measure everything in quarters starting Jan, April, July, Oct) before you use the benefits. So if you sign up and start paying right when you know you're pregnant, you should be able to get in two quarters before you have a baby and need to take the benefits. And #2) They require you to pay in for two whole years. So if you just start paying in right when you find out you're pregnant, you have to keep paying for a year a half after you're done collecting benefits. I did the math and it was worth it for me, but it's a pretty important part to know. Also my payments changed over the course of the two years because they constantly adjust it based on your income. Also, I did make the program work for me and I'm glad I did it, but they have the worst website I've ever encountered, anywhere. Good luck!