Vacation Leave          Holidays           Bereavement
 
Voting Leave          Jury Duty          Sick Leave          Parental Leave

Disclaimer: The information contained herein is intended for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or an opinion on any issue.  Users are advised to seek legal advice from their legal counsel prior to taking (or omitting to take) any action based on the information contained herein.  While we periodically review and update the information contained herein, we do not warrant or guarantee the quality, accuracy or completeness of any information contained herein and the information should not be relied upon as accurate, timely or fit for any particular purpose. This information was constructed on October 15th 2018.

Are Employees entitled to time off [eg. Vacations, sick leave or holidays] in the United States as per Federal Legislation?

Under Section 207(3)(e) of the FLSA, regular rate has been defined not to include payments made for occasional periods when no work is performed due to vacation, holiday, illness, failure of the employer to provide sufficient work or other similar cause, reasonable payments for travelling expenses or other expenses incurred by an employee in the furtherance of his employer’s interests and properly reimbursable by the employer.

In other words, the FLSA does not require payment for time not worked, such as vacations, sick leave or holidays. These benefits are usually a matter of agreement between an Employer and an Employee.

The FMLA is designed to provide employees with temporary job security when faced with certain health-related care responsibilities that preclude them from working. However, it does not provide paid leave.

The FMLA compels employers who employ 50 or more employees to grant qualifying employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for:

  • Birth and care of the Employee’s child, or placement for adoption or foster care of a child with the Employee;
  • Birth and care of the Employee’s child, or placement for adoption or foster care of a child with the employee;
  • Care of an immediate family member (spouse, child, parent) who has a serious health condition; or
  • care of the employee’s own serious health condition.

An Employee will be eligible for FMLA if they have:

  1. Worked at least 12 months (which do not have to be consecutive) for the Employer
  2. Have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months immediately before the FLMA leave date begins.

Further, if the Employee is a family member (spouse, son, daughter, parent or next of kin) of the Armed Forces, the Employer will provide up to 26 weeks unpaid leave to care for a member of the Armed Forces who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation or therapy. This also extends to members of the National Guard or Reserves.

Are employees entitled to time off for voting in the following states?

 

Whether or not an Employee gets time off for voting depends on where they work.

Please see below for whether full-time Employees will get time off for work:

Alabama

As per the Alabama Code (Section 17-1-5), Employees are entitled to one hour of unpaid leave to vote in any election.

The Employee must be registered to vote and must make a reasonable request for the leave from his or her Employer.

An Employer is exempt from the leave requirement if the polls open two hours before an employee’s work begins or remain open one hour after an employee’s work ends.

The Employee may specify the hours the Employee may be absent.

Alaska

As per the Alaska Statutes (Section 15.15.100), Employers are to provide Employees with time off with pay to vote, unless there are two hours before the opening of the polls and the beginning of the employee’s scheduled shift or two hours between the end of the employee’s shift and the closing of the polls (Section 15.56.100)

Arizona

The Arizona Revised Statutes (Section 16-402) requires employers to provide employees time off with pay to vote. To be eligible, the Employee must make a request prior to the day of the election.  

The Employer is only required to provide employees with enough paid leave so that employees have 3 consecutive hours to vote between either the opening of the polls and the start of their shift or the end of their shift and the closing of their polls.

For example, if voting polls open at 7:00 a.m. and an employee’s shift starts at 9:00 a.m., the employer could comply with the voting leave law by allowing the employee to arrive at work at 10:00 a.m. and paying the employee wages for the one (1) hour they would have otherwise worked. By granting the one (1) hour of paid leave at the beginning of the employee’s shift, the employer would be ensuring that the employee had three (3) consecutive hours in which to vote.

The employer may specify the hours an employee can leave to vote.

An employer that refuses an employee the right to paid voting leave may be guilty of a class 2 misdemeanour.

Arkansas

As per the Arkansas Code (7-1-102), an Employer must schedule unpaid time, so each Employee has sufficient time to vote on the day of the election.

An Employer who does not comply with this can be fined not less than $ 25 and not more than $ 250

California

As per the CA Election Code [14-1-14000], the Employer must provide employees with sufficient time off to vote. The time off must either be before the employees’ shifts begin or after their shifts end unless otherwise agreed to be the Employer and Employee.

The Employer is only required to pay employees for up to two hours of time off to vote. Employees must give their Employer at least three days’ notice of their intention to take voting leave.

Employers must also post a Notice, so workers are aware and can see the law pertaining to their voting rights. [14-1-14001]

Colorado

In Colorado [1-7-102] Employers are to provide Employees with up to two hours of paid leave to vote, unless:

  1. An employee has requested to leave at least one day prior to the vote date
  2. The Employee has three or more hours after the opening or before the closing of the polls during which the voter is not required to be on the job

An Employer may specify the hours an employee may take leave to vote, but the period must fall at the beginning or end of the work period if the Employee so requests.

Connecticut

Connecticut does not have a law which requires an Employer to grant its Employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Delaware

Delaware law does not require an Employer to allow Employees time off, paid or unpaid, to vote.

However, the Employer cannot prevent the Employer to use accrued vacation time to act as an Election Officer if they are not in a critical need position.

District of Columbia

The District of Columbia does not have any laws requiring an Employer to provide Employees either paid or unpaid leave to vote.

Florida

Florida law does not require an Employer to allow Employees time off to vote.

However, Florida Law [Title IX-104-081] prohibits an employer from firing or threatening to fire any Employee for voting or not voting in an election, for a particular candidate, or for a specific ballot measure. An employer that violates this law may be guilty of a third-degree felony. 

 

Georgia

In Georgia [21-2-404], Employers are to provide Employees up to two (2) hours of unpaid leave to vote if:

  • the Employee gives the Employer reasonable notice of the need to take time off, and
  • the polls are not open for at least two (2) hours before the Employee’s shift begins or after it ends.

The Employer may determine the hours the Employee may be absent to vote.

Hawaii

In Hawaii [2-11-95], Employees can take sufficient paid leave up to two hours so that they have two consecutive hours before the beginning or after the ending of their shift.

Paid time off cannot include lunches or breaks.

An Employer is not required to grant an employee leave to vote if he or she has a period of two (2) consecutive hours before the beginning or after the ending of his or her shift in which the polls are open for voting.

An Employer is not required to pay an Employee for voting leave if the Employee fails to vote. An Employee can present a voter’s receipt as proof of voting.

An Employer who fails to grant the required voting leave may be subject to a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $300 recoverable through civil action.

Idaho

Idaho does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Illinois

In Illinois [10 ILCS 5/17-15], every Employee must give the notice to be entitled to unpaid leave.  The Employee is entitled to two hours off work, provided that the Employee’s working hours being less than two hours after the opening of the polls and end less than two hours before the closing of the polls.

Indiana

Indiana does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Iowa

In the Iowa code [49-109], Employers must provide Employees with paid leave sufficient to ensure that an Employee has three (3) consecutive hours when combined with non-working time, within which to vote while polls are open. To be eligible for paid voting leave, the employee must request the leave in writing prior to the day of the election or vote

Kansas

Kansas law [25-418] allows any registered voter to paid leave from work for a period of up to two (2) hours to vote. If the polls are open before or after the work shift, however, the voter may only take such time off that, when added to the amount of time before or after work that the polls are open, it does not exceed two (2) hours.

Kentucky

Kentucky law [118-035] requires Employers to provide Employees with at least four (4) hours of unpaid time off to vote or to obtain an absentee ballot.

The law prohibits an Employer from penalizing an Employee for taking time off to vote unless the Employee fails to vote for reasons that were within the Employee’s control.

The law is not clear whether an Employer’s failure to pay an employee for the voting leave constitutes a “penalty” as intended by the law.

To be eligible for voting leave, an Employee must request the leave at least one day prior to the date the leave will be taken.

The Employer may specify which hours the Employee can take off.

Also, an Employer must permit an employee to take time off to train and serve as an election officer. The Employer may specify which hours the employee can be absent from work to train or serve as an election officer, to the extent possible.

Louisiana

Louisiana does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

 

Maine

Maine does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Maryland

Maryland [Election Article,10-315] requires employers to permit employees to take two (2) hours of paid leave to vote, so long as the employee does not have two (2) hours of continuous off-duty time while the polls are open. Employees may be required to show their employer proof that they voted.

Massachusetts

Massachusetts law [149.178] prohibit employers from requiring any employee that works in a manufacturing, mechanical, or mercantile establishment to work within the first two (2) hours after the polls open. To be eligible for voting leave, the employee must request the leave. There are no provisions as to whether the leave is paid or unpaid. Therefore, it is assumed that the leave is unpaid and as the discretion of the Employer.

Massachusetts law does not have a law which requires an Employer, other than those with manufacturing, mechanical, or mercantile establishments, to provide Employees with leave, paid or unpaid, to vote.

Michigan

Michigan does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Minnesota

Minnesota law [204C.04] requires Employers to permit Employees to take off, with pay, the time needed to vote in an election.

An “election” is specifically defined as “a regularly scheduled state primary or general election, an election to fill a vacancy in the office of United States senator or United States representative, or an election to fill a vacancy in the office of state senator or state representative.”

An Employer that does not permit an employee to take paid voting leave as required commits a misdemeanour. 

Mississippi

Mississippi does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Missouri

Missouri law [115.639] allows an Employee to, with prior notice to their employer, take three (3) hours off work to vote if there are not three (3) consecutive hours when the polls are open during which the employee is not required to be at work.

An employer who violates this law is guilty of a class four election offence – 365 days jail or $2,500 fine or both.

Montana

Montana does not have a law that requires an Employer to grant its Employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Nebraska

Nebraska law [32-922] allows employees who do not have two (2) consecutive hours when not required to be at work during polling hours are entitled to up to two (2) paid hours to leave to vote. Pay cannot be deducted if the employee gives notice in advance of election day. The employer can set the time for leave to vote. Nebraska Stat. 32-922

Nevada

Nevada law [293.463] requires employers to provide paid voting leave to employees for whom it is impractical to vote before or after work, as follows:

One (1) hour – if the voting place is two (2) miles or less from the employee’s workplace;

Two (2) hours – if the voting place is more than two (2) miles but not more than ten (10) miles from the employee’s workplace;

Three (3) hours – if the voting place is more than ten (10) miles from the employee’s workplace.

The employer may require employees to request leave prior to the day of the election. The employer can set the time for leave to vote to minimize the impact on business operations.

An employer who violates this law is guilty of a misdemeanour – up to 180 days jail or $1,000 fine or both.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire does not require an employer to provide employees time off to vote, either paid or unpaid.

It does provide that an employee who is unable to vote on election day due to employment obligations is considered absent and entitled to absentee voting. [657.1]

New Jersey

New Jersey does not have a law that requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

New Mexico

New Mexico law [1-12-42] allows Employees whose workday begins within two (2) hours of the polls opening and ends less than (3) hours before polls close are entitled to up to two (2) paid hours of leave to vote. The Employer can set the time for leave to vote.

An employer who violates this law may be assessed a fine not less than $50 nor more than $100. 

New York

New York law [3-110] requires employers to provide employees time off work so that an employee’s time off hours combined with his or her off-duty hours provide the employee sufficient time to vote while polls are open. Only two hours of the voting leave must be paid. An employee is considered to have sufficient off-duty time to vote if he or she has four (4) consecutive off-duty hours to vote while polls are open.

To be eligible for the voting leave, an employee must request the leave at least two (2) working days but not more than ten (10) working days before the day of the vote or election.

Not less than ten (10) working days before an election, each employer is required to post in a conspicuous location a notice informing employees of their rights and obligations to take voting leave.

North Carolina

North Carolina does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

North Dakota

North Dakota law [16.1-1-01-2.1] “encourages” employers to establish a program to allow the employee to be absent for the purpose of voting if their work schedules conflicts with voting during the time polls are open. This is voluntary for employers. There is no guaranteed right to be absent. 

Ohio

Ohio law [3599.06] prohibits employers from terminating or threatening to terminate an employee for taking a reasonable amount of time off to vote. Employers are only required to pay salaried employees for voting leave.

An employer who violates this law may be required to pay a fine not less than $50 nor more than $500.

Oklahoma

Oklahoma law [26-7-101] requires an Employer to provide an Employee two (2) hours of time off to vote (more if distance demands), if the employee does not have three (3) hours before his or her shift begins or after it ends in which to vote while polls are open. The voting leave must be paid if the employee presents to the employer proof of voting. To be eligible for voting leave, an employee must inform his or her employer of their intention to take the leave prior to the day of the election or vote.

An Employer may dictate when an employee takes voting leave or may adjust employee schedules so that employees have three (3) hours before or after their shift in which to vote while polls are open.

An employer that fails to provide the voting leave as required may be subject to fines not less than $50 but not more than $100.

Oregon

Oregon does not have a law that requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote

Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania does not have any laws that require an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

Rhode Island

Rhode Island does not have a law that requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

South Carolina

South Carolina does not have a law that requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.

South Dakota

South Dakota [12-3-5] Law requires an employer to provide an employee with two (2) consecutive hours of paid leave to vote if the employee does not have two (2) consecutive hours of off-duty time before his or her shift begins or after his or her shift ends in which to vote while polls are open. An employer may dictate when the employee may take voting leaving.

An employer in South Dakota that fails to provide an employee paid voting leave as required commits a Class 2 misdemeanour.

Tennessee

Tennessee law [2-1-106] requires employers to provide employees with a reasonable amount of paid time off to vote up to three (3) hours.

To be eligible, an employee:

  • must not have three (3) or more hours before their shift begins or after their shift ends in which to vote while polls are open, and
  • request the paid voting leave by twelve o’clock (12:00) noon on the day prior to the vote or election.

Texas

Texas law [276.004] requires an employer to provide an employee with paid time off to vote if the employee does not have two (2) consecutive hours outside their scheduled work hours in which to vote while polls are open.

An employer that fails to provide the paid voting leave to an employee as required commits a Class C misdemeanour.

 

Utah

Utah law [20A-3-103] requires an employer to provide an employee with up to two (2) hours paid time off to vote if the employee does not have three (3) or more consecutive off-duty hours in which to vote while polls are open. An employer may dictate when an employee may take paid voting leave.

An employer that fails to provide an employee paid voting leave as required commits a Class B misdemeanour.

Vermont

Vermont does not have a law that requires an employer to grant its employee leave, paid or unpaid, to vote.

Virginia

Virginia does not have a law that requires an employer to grant its employees leave, paid or unpaid, to vote.

Virginia law [24.2-118.1] requires an employer to provide an employee time off to serve as an election officer if the employee has given reasonable notice of the need for leave. The leave does not need to be paid, however, an employer may not require an employee that takes time off to serve as an election official to use vacation or sick leave.

If an Employee serves as an election officer for four (4) or more hours, including travel time, on a given day, he or she may not be required to start a shift that begins on or after 5:00 p.m. on the day of service as an election official or after 3:00 a.m. on the day following the day of service.

An Employer that fails to permit an employee to take time off to serve as an election officer commits a Class 3 misdemeanour.

Washington

Washington does not have any laws that require employers to provide employees paid or unpaid time off to vote.

West Virginia

West Virginia  [3-1-42] law requires employers to provide an employee with up to three (3) hours of paid leave to vote so long as the employee has requested the time off to vote in writing three (3) days before to the day of the election or vote. Employers are not required to provide paid leave to vote to employees who have three (3) hours of off-duty time to vote while polls are open but voluntarily choose not vote.

In essential government, health, hospital, transportation and communication services and in production, manufacturing and processing works requiring continuity in operation, an employer may arrange employees’ schedules on the day of an election or vote so as to cause the least amount of interruption to business operation as possible. Such an employer must ensure, however, that each employee has sufficient time to vote while polls are open.

Wisconsin

Wisconsin law [6.76] requires an employer to provide an employee up to three (3) hours of time off to vote if the employee request the leave prior to the day of the vote or election. The voting leave does not need to be paid. An employer may dictate when an employee takes voting leave

Wyoming

Wyoming law [22-2-111] requires employers to provide an employee with one (1) hour of paid leave to vote in a primary, general, or special election to fill a seat for the United States Congress, if the employee does not have three (3) or more consecutive off-duty hours in which to vote while polls are open. An employer may dictate when an employee takes paid voting leave.