Jersey City, New Jersey Enacts Sick Leave Ordinance; Is Newark Next?

On October 21, 2013, Jersey City enacted an ordinance (passed by its City Council on September 25) mandating that all Jersey City businesses provide their employees sick leave—either paid or unpaid (depending upon the employer’s size). This ordinance (No. 13097) will take effect on January 24, 2014, or upon the expiration of current collective bargaining agreements for employees represented by a union. 

Under the ordinance, private employers operating in Jersey City with 10 or more employees (it is unclear whether all 10 must be in Jersey City) must provide up to five paid sick days each year to any employee who works in Jersey City for at least 80 hours in one year. Employers with fewer than 10 employees are required to provide up to five unpaid sick days each year to employees who work in Jersey City for at least 80 hours in one year. Full-time and part-time employees will earn one hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked (up to 40 hours a year). Sick days may be used for various mental or physical conditions involving such employees or their (broadly defined) family members. 

A detailed summary of this ordinance, which also contains notice and recordkeeping obligations as well as significant penalties for noncompliance, is available here.

Note: This article was published in the November, 2013 issue of the New Jersey eAuthority.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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