Is it legal for an employer to deny the use of accrued sick time?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Is it legal for an employer to deny the use of accrued sick time?

I work part-time for an organization in the state of MA which is eligible for paid sick leave 30 employees and have accrued 30 hours of sick-time since starting. I have been told that since we are not guaranteed specific shifts, and our shifts are determined based on other employee availability, that I cannot use this time. We are told instead that if we are sick we just have to find

another employee to cover our shift and this time will go unpaid. Are there any circumstances where this could be allowed?

Asked on May 23, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

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

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

In MA, the law prohibits employers from interfering (including the denial) of an employee's exercise of their earned sick time rights. This not only means that employers cannot subject employees to discipline for using such time but also that employers cannot consider an employee's use of sick time as a negative factor in any performance evaluation, promotion decision, disciplinary action, or termination decision.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

No, it is not legal if they give you sick leave which you have accrued. Sick leave is a benefit which you earn by working for it; it is in similar to your pay or vacation days (if you get vacation) in that way. To deny you sick leave is to take away part of your compensation which you worked for, which is illegal. If they will not let you use accrued sick leave, contact your state department of labor.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption