Does Your Sick Leave Policy Need a Checkup?

doctor-563428_1280You’ve probably seen the employee with a pile of tissues on the desk, sweating profusely and responding, “I’m fine” when people ask about his or her health.  Then there’s the person who routinely arrives late or leaves early and frequently takes unscheduled days off.

Although federal law does not require payment for time not worked — such as sick days, vacations and holidays — most employers recognize the importance of paid leave programs for employee health and performance.  Effective leave policies also help companies retain top people.  But are your leave policies effective?

Unscheduled employee absenteeism costs some organizations a bundle every year.  Employers generally tolerate the occasional “sick day” that employees take for non-health-related reasons.  Yet they may suffer from sick leave abuse, where employees repeatedly violate the company’s attendance policy — and that translates into lost dollars.

Other employers suffer from the opposite problem.

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Paid Vacation: Is it Optional or Required?

1064586_50115630An employer asks:  “One of my employees left without giving any advance notice.  Do I have to compensate the employee for unused vacation and personal time?”

You are not required under any federal or state laws to offer vacation or personal time off benefits, with or without pay.  But if you offer vacation time with pay, sick leave with pay, and/or paid time off (PTO), you need to be aware of possible regulations in your state regarding compensation.

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