7282049_sJust a friendly reminder that New York City’s Earned Sick Time Act goes into effect today.  Employers with 5 or more employees must offer employees who work in NYC up to 5 days of paid leave per year.  Employees do not have to be permanently scheduled in NYC to earn sick time under the law.   Rather, any employee who works 80 or more hours per calendar year in NYC will earn sick time under the Ordinance.

Employees will earn 1 hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked.  Sick time begins to accrue as of today or when an employee is hired if the employee is hired after today.  An employee must work 120 days before being allowed to use any accrued sick time.

Time accrued but not used in the employer’s benefit calendar year must be allowed to be carried over.  However, employers can cap the maximum hours used in any year at 40 hours.  Any accrued but unused time that an employee has does not have to be paid out upon termination.  There is also an anti-retaliation provision in the law which prohibits employers from retaliating against employees sicking to use sick time earned under the law.

Employers who have employees subject to a collective bargaining agreement have a bit of a reprieve.  The law does not apply to any employees covered by a CBA in effect as of April 1st.  However, the law will apply to those employees once the CBA expires unless the new CBA waives the requirements of the law and provides for equivalent leave.

If employers have not already done so, we recommend revising sick leave policies to insure compliance with the law.  In addition, current employees must be given a Notice of Employee Rights by May 1st.  Any person hired after April 1, 2014, must be given the Notice upon hire.