Can my employer take away earned PTO because I have become a part-time employee?

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Can my employer take away earned PTO because I have become a part-time employee?

Can my earned sick, personal, and vacation time just be taken away? I have been full-time, and accumulating sick time for the past 1 1/2 years. Recently I have become part-time (this is my second job). My employer says because of this they will take away all my time earned. I understand if it doesn’t accumulate anymore but actually going in and deleting earned time that I haven’t used? Can they really do that without paying me for the unused time?

Asked on August 1, 2011 Massachusetts

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

They absolutely cannot take away time earned. You have earned the paid time off (sick, vacation, etc). To do so is violative of all labor laws. You are correct; you will no longer earn the type of time off you would have though you should still be able to earn something depending on how many hours you do work and whether PTO is mandatory in your state or left up to the employer. So, your best bet before you jump into looking for another job, talk to your state department of labor on whether this is allowed and what you can do to prevent it. Your best case, quit and cash out what you can. Or continue to work and see if the department of labor can make sure this time is not taken from you.


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