Do I have to pay for accrued vacation days if I’m leaving my job?

Today is my last day but my HR informed me that I used 8 of 10 vacation days for the whole year. However, since I am leaving in the middle of the year, I need to pay for the 4 accrued vacation days. My employer had never informed me of this policy until today. Is this something

they need to inform before I use my vacation days?

Asked on May 27, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes: you need to be informed of the policy, or at least have the reasonable opportunity to have been informed (for example: if the policy is in an employee handbook that was given to you or is available online, that is good enough, even if you personally never read it or noticed that policy, because you had the reasonable chance to become aware of the policy). If you did not know of or have a reasonable chance to know of the policy, then they should not be able to, after the fact, impose an obligation on your to repay the time: obligations to pay or repay must be consented to, even if only implicitly, before incurring the obligation. If they insist on making you pay for the time when you were never put on notice (prior to using the time) that this could happen, you could contact the state department of labor to file a complaint, and/or sue the employer (e.g. in small claims court) for any money they withhold from you, such as from your last check.


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