Philadelphia’s Paid Sick Leave Ordinance is Effective on May 13th – Are you Prepared?

Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP

May 13th_FullOn February 12, 2015, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed a city ordinance requiring employers with 10 or more employees to provide 40 days of paid sick leave in a calendar year.  You can read HR Legalist’s summary of the ordinance here, and read the ordinance itself here.

Starting on Wednesday, May 13th, all employers subject to the law must allow their Philadelphia employees to accrue paid sick leave at the rate of one hour per every 40 hours worked.  For example, if your company has 15 employees (even if some of them are outside of Philadelphia), your Philadelphia employees could earn their first hour of paid time as early as the week of May 18th.

Employers who already give their employees at least as much leave as provided in the ordinance may not need to make significant changes to their leave policies.  However, even if you allow a generous amount of leave, you need to make sure that you are providing leave for the three main purposes allowed under the ordinance: (1) an employee’s own medical condition (including preventative care); (2) care for an employee’s family member (including preventative medical care); and (3) absences necessary due to domestic abuse, sexual assault or stalking (including leave in connection with civil and criminal proceedings).

Last but not least, all employers must notify employees of their rights under the new ordinance starting on May 13th.  This notice must be included in your employee handbook, and via either a notice or poster in an accessible area.  The City of Philadelphia recently issued a notice that meets these requirements – you can access it here.

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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