Can my vacation time be deducted for sick time?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Can my vacation time be deducted for sick time?

I am a 40 hour a week employee. I accrue 1 week of vacation time per year. I called in sick and my employer paid me for that day but took it out of my accrued vacation time. Is this correct? Are my vacation time and the sick time that I accrue with the new law the same thing?

Asked on October 26, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, California


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

In CA, an employer may not draw upon an employee's accrued vacation time to cover the absence of an exempt employee's caused by illness. The reason is that earned vacation time is considered wages, and accrues as labor is performed, therefore it cannot be forfeited. A worker who is deprived of any such vacation time can file a claim with the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement or seek help from an employment law attorney.

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