Employment Law: Massachusetts Sick Leave Law Now In Effect

If you work in a company of 11 or more people, you are now entitled to paid sick leave. The law became effective on July 15, 2015, and it requires that you receive one hour of paid leave for every thirty hours worked. According to the statute, you may use this time for yourself, your spouse, child, parent or parent – in –law for issues such as:

  • Medical treatment for physical or mental illness;
  • Conditions that require home care for special needs
  • Preventative medical care;
  • Routine medical appointments; or
  • Physical or legal issues concerning domestic violence.

In most instances, you do not have to produce documentation, or a “doctor’s note”, unless you are absent for more than 24 hours.

Depending on your salary structure, you may even be able to use this time off in small increments, such as an hour or two, rather than a whole day.

This benefit begins to accrue on your date of hire or July 15, 2015, whichever is later, and you may begin using your earned leave time on your 91st day of employment. You are not entitled to more than 40 hours of paid leave in a calendar year, but you are able you carry over unused hours. The law does not require your employer to pay you for unused sick leave when your employment ends.

Compliance with this legislation requires that your employer post an official notice detailing the provisions of this new law in the workplace. Contact an attorney who specializes in Massachusetts employment law with any questions or concerns that you have, or if you believe you are not being treated fairly concerning paid time off.

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