New York City’s Earned Sick Time Act to Go into Effect on April 1, 2014

by Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP
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New York City’s Earned Sick Time Act (“the Act”) will go into effect for certain employers on April 1, 2014. The Act — which was passed on June 26, 2013, when the New York City Council overrode Mayor Bloomberg’s veto—requires nearly all non-governmental employers with fifteen or more employees to provide all employees employed for more than eighty hours in a calendar year up to five paid sick leave days per year. The Act was scheduled to go into effect on April 1, 2014, for certain employers only if economic thresholds that were identified in the Act were met as of December 2013. On Friday, December 13, 2013, New York City’s Independent Budget Office announced that the thresholds have been met and the Act will go into effect. Employers that employ twenty or more employees must comply with the Act by April 1, 2014, and employers employing fifteen to nineteen employers must comply by October 1, 2015. Domestic workers are covered by the Act, but are covered by separate provisions that are not discussed here.

Employers subject to the Act must provide a minimum of one hour of paid sick time for every thirty hours worked by an employee. The Act provides that an employer need not provide more than forty hours of paid sick leave per year. Additionally, the Act does not require an employer to provide additional paid sick leave to employees if it already provides other paid time off, such as personal days or paid vacation, that is equivalent to the paid sick leave required by the Act. The Act also does not apply to employees covered by collective bargaining agreements (“CBAs”) if their CBA waives the rights provided by the Act and the CBA provides a comparable benefit.

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