Paid Sick Leave Required for Government Contractors

Authored by Dannae L. Delano, Jamie M. Westbrook

Sep 09, 2015

President Obama issued an Executive Order requiring federal contractors and subcontractors, for contracts entered into after January 1, 2017, to provide employees with one hour of paid sick leave required for every 30 hours worked, for a minimum of 56 hours per year. The Order has an expansive definition of the contracts affected, so special care should be taken to ensure compliance.

Employees may use the paid leave for his or her own physical or mental illness, injury, medical condition, treatment, or diagnosis as well as that of a spouse, child, parent, or other person whose close association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship. Employees may also use the paid leave for absences resulting from domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, and for the added purposes of obtaining additional counseling, seeking relocation, seeking assistance from a victim services organization, or taking legal action for themselves or a related individual. Accrued paid leave must be carried over from year to year, but may be forfeited upon separation provided it is reinstated if the employee is rehired within 12 months. Notice of the leave must be provided to the employer as soon as practicable and a minimum of seven days advance notice of the leave is required if the leave is foreseeable. Certification may be required for leave three days or longer and must be provided by the employee within the first 30 days of leave.

What this means to you -Employers currently contracting with the federal government should review the Executive Order and understand its application, if any, to the Employers; especially if, the employer knows its contracts will likely be renewed on or after January 1, 2017. Employers affected should be on the lookout for the Department of Labor to issue regulations implementing the Order.

If you have any questions regarding paid sick leave requirements or any other employee benefits matter, feel free to contact Dannae Delano or Jamie Westbrook.

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