Changes to Connecticut Paid Sick Leave Law Provide Some Relief to Employers
The Connecticut Paid Sick Leave legislation has been amended (1) to allow employers to determine the 50-employee applicability threshold in the same manner as under the state’s Family and Medical Leave Act, (2) to allow accrual of paid sick leave hours on any annual basis, not just a calendar year, and (3) to expand slightly the list of “service worker” titles that are the beneficiaries of the law.
“An Act Creating Parity between Paid Sick Leave Benefits and Other Employer-Provided Benefits” (the “Act”) (Public Act 14-128), signed into law by Governor Dannel Malloy, becomes effective on January 1, 2015.
The Act remedies a previously problematic method for employers in calculating whether they meet the requisite 50-employee threshold. As currently written, employers determine if they are covered by the law by reviewing the employee counts reported on their previous year’s four quarterly earnings reports. If at least 50 individuals were identified in any of those quarters, the employer would be subject to the paid sick leave law for the entire following year.
The Act simplifies this process and may help employers with seasonal or fluctuating workforces. Applicability depends upon whether the employer has at least 50 employees on its payroll for the week containing October 1. The Act accounts for potential abuse of this new method by prohibiting employers from firing, dismissing, or transferring an employee from one job site to another to avoid meeting the 50-employee threshold on October 1.
The Act removes the mandate that employees accrue paid sick leave hours on a calendar year basis. An employer’s accrual policy may run on a date-of-hire anniversary or any other annual basis. This is a welcome change for employers who were forced to calculate paid sick leave hours on a basis different from other paid time off hours.
The Act adds the title “radiologic technologists” to the list of service workers eligible for the 40 annual hours of paid sick leave.