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Posts Tagged ‘Paid Sick Leave’

Georgia Employers Must Become Familiar With State’s New Paid Leave Law

Posted on: July 9th, 2018

By: Will Collins

Across the country, there are an increasing number of state laws requiring that employers provide paid sick leave, including paid leave for the care of a family member. For instance, under the Georgia Family Care Act, which went into effect in July of 2017, employees who work at least 30 hours per week and receive a paid sick leave benefit may use up to five (5) days per calendar of that paid leave to care for “immediate family members.”  This includes the employee’s child, spouse, grandchild, grandparent, parent, or “any other dependents as shown on the employee’s most recent tax return.”

To be clear, the Act, which applies to the State of Georgia and all of its political subdivisions and instrumentalities as well as all employers with twenty-five (25) or more employees, does not create an obligation to provide sick leave, but instead requires covered employers that elect to provide paid sick leave to allow their employees to use a portion of that leave to care for immediate family members.

Georgia is just one of several states, including New York, expanding paid family leave obligations. While Georgia stopped short of mandating paid sick leave, eleven (11) other states have laws addressing paid leave policies. As a result, employers must be mindful of state law requirements as well as unpaid leave obligations under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

If you have questions about your leave policy or leave obligations, please contact one of the attorneys in our National Labor and Employment Practice Group to help you navigate the state and federal regulations and answer questions as they arise.

California Law Will Provide Paid Sick Leave to Employees

Posted on: October 6th, 2014

By: Frank H. Hupfl, III

Last month, California joined Connecticut and a growing number of municipalities that require employers to provide paid sick leave for employees.  The law, known as the Healthy Workplaces, Health Families Act of 2014 (the “Act”), provides employees with the ability to accrue at least three paid days of sick leave annually.  The law is due to go into effect on July 1, 2015.

Under the Act, employees who work for thirty or more days within a year are entitled to receive paid sick leave.  The leave accumulates at a rate of not less than one hour for every thirty hours worked.  Other key provisions include a notice posting requirement for employers and a three year record retention policy regarding hours worked, paid sick time accumulated and paid sick time actually used.  Importantly, employees must be allowed to use sick time for a family member’s illness as well.

By enacting the law, California becomes the second state to require that employers provide paid sick leave for employees.  New York City, San Francisco and Newark, New Jersey are just a few of the municipalities that already provide similar benefits and this fall, voters in Massachusetts and several other municipalities will decide similar measures requiring paid sick leave.  Interestingly, the United States is the only country among the twenty-two “richest” countries that does not guarantee workers some form of paid sick leave according to a 2009 Center for Economic Policy Research study, but that trend may be changing.

Businesses with employees based in California should review their policies and procedures prior to the July 1, 2015 effective date to ensure compliance with the new law.  Failing to do so could prove pricey; the Act includes penalties for non-compliance ranging up to damages in the thousands of dollars per violation.  As always, be sure to check back with us for any updates on what might be an emerging national trend.