Is my husband’s company violating sick pay law?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Is my husband’s company violating sick pay law?

My husband works for a large company whose policy has been that
employees cannot use sick pay for the first day of an absence, but can
receive sick pay for the second. For instance, if he is sick for one day, that
day is unpaid, but if he misses work due to an illness for two days, he will be
paid one day’s worth of sick pay. Does that comply with the sick leave law
that went into effect on Jan 1st, 2018, or is he entitled to two days of sick pay
for a two-day absence now?

Asked on January 12, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Washington


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Prior to January 1, 2018 there was no sick leave or sick pay law in this regard. It was wholly voluntary for employers to provide sick leave at all, and it being voluntary, if an employer chose to provide sick leave, it could any limitations on it which the employer wanted, including the limitation you describe.
From 1/1/18 forward, most employers in your state have to give employees 1 hour of sick leave for each 40 hours they work, and *must* let them use it (and be paid for it) from the very beginining of any absence. But because it is only for leave accrued under your state's new sick leave law since 1/1/18 and today is 1/14/18, an employee working 40 hours per week would only have accrued 2 - 3 hours covered by this law and subject to its protections--previously earned hours or days would be subject to whatever policy(ies) the employer chose.

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 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.

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