Can a company change the way vacation time is earned?

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Can a company change the way vacation time is earned?

I work for a fairly large manufacturing facility, 400
employees, in Ohio. Since I started 10 years ago,
the policy has always been that after 6 months you
got 1week, after 2 years 2 weeks, and so on. All
vacation time was available after January 1st.
However, starting next year, vacation time will only
be given to us after we work a certain number of
hours. Can they withhold vacation time that we long
term employees have already earned?

Asked on September 11, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

They cannot withhold already earned vacation, but they can change how it is earned for any vacation not yet earned. Since the policy has not been implemented yet and you have warning of the change, when Jan. 1, 2020 starts, they can legally switch it so you accrue vacation over time, rather than getting it all on Jan. 1. Remember: vacation is not required by law--employers choose whether to offer it. Since it is voluntary for them, they are allowed to decide how and when it is earned, and can change that policy at will.


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