On May 14, 2013, the Assembly introduced a comprehensive bill (A4125) that would require employers to provide all employees (upon their 90th day of employment) one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Employees would be permitted to carry over up to 72 hours of sick leave from year to year (unless the employer generally has less than 10 employees, in which case the cap is 40 hours).
Earned sick leave may be used for four purposes: (1) time needed for diagnosis, care, or treatment of, or recovery from, the employee’s mental or physical illness, injury, or other adverse health condition, or for preventative medical care; (2) time needed to care for a family member for those same purposes; (3) the employee or a family member being a victim of domestic violence if the leave is to obtain medical attention, counseling, relocation, legal, or other services; or (4) absence due to a closure order of the employee’s workplace, or the public health-related emergency closure of a school or place of care of a child of the employee.
Employers would be permitted to require advance notice of the need to take leave, as well as supporting documentation in certain circumstances. Further, the bill would prohibit retaliation, provide a rebuttable presumption of unlawful retaliation in certain circumstances, and provide for a civil cause of action by employees (with double damages among the remedies). There would also be posting, distribution, and recordkeeping requirements.
A parallel bill (S2866) was introduced by the Senate on June 14, 2013.
Note: This article was published in the September 2013 issue of the New Jersey eAuthority.