Friday, September 18, 2020
The countdown is on for when Maine formally turns into the primary state to require non-public employers to supply earned paid go away to workers for any cause.
On January 1, 2021, non-public employers with greater than 10 workers in Maine should present 1 hour of paid go away for each 40 hours labored, as much as a most of 40 hours of paid go away per 12 months. This go away isn’t just sick time. It’s for any cause in any way.
Since Governor Janet Mills signed L.D. 369, An Act Authorizing Earned Worker Depart, in Could 2019, the state’s Division of Labor (MDOL) has labored towards drafting and implementing guidelines to make clear the statute’s ambiguities and employer duties on this new paid go away period. After greater than a 12 months of revisions, public feedback, and hearings, the MDOL issued its ultimate guidelines on September 14, 2020.
With lower than three months to adjust to Maine’s new earned paid go away regulation, employers might need to notice the next key provisions to find out which workers are coated and the way greatest to implement the brand new go away necessities.
To Whom Does the New Earned Paid Depart Regulation Apply?
Personal employers are coated if they’ve greater than 10 workers working in Maine within the ordinary and common course of enterprise for greater than 120 days in any calendar 12 months.
A coated worker might embody full-time, part-time, or per diem workers. This contains college students and noncitizens approved to work in the USA.
Home employees, even these working in non-public properties, incomes greater than $1,000 per 12 months are eligible for go away.
Usually, if a employee is a coated worker for unemployment insurance coverage functions, that employee counts towards the 10-employee cutoff and is roofed by the earned paid go away regulation.
Who Is Excluded?
The regulation doesn’t cowl seasonal workers, unbiased contractors, and workers working fewer than 120 days in any calendar 12 months.
Any worker topic to a collective bargaining settlement through the interval between January 1, 2021 and the expiration of the settlement is excluded.
When Does Earned Paid Depart Begin?
Staff start to earn go away upon rent, however employers might limit using go away till an worker has been employed for 120 days.
Employers might front-load the 40 hours of go away firstly of a calendar 12 months or on an worker’s anniversary date so long as the worker receives no much less earned paid go away than she or he would have earned underneath an accrual methodology. If an employer does front-load and an worker terminates his or her employment previous to working ample hours to earn the time already taken, the employer might deduct the unearned go away from the final paycheck.
What Is the Fee of Pay for This Depart?
Employers should pay workers their common base charge of pay, together with bonuses and commissions. Calculating the bottom charge of pay requires dividing whole earnings for the week previous to the go away by the variety of hours labored. Word that this has the potential for workers to take go away at an elevated charge ought to they obtain a bonus or fee within the week previous to their go away. The MDOL acknowledged this potential downside, nevertheless it didn’t undertake guidelines to stop this attainable manipulation.
Employers within the service trade, whose workers use the tip credit score, will use the state’s minimal wage as the bottom charge of pay.
Could Staff Roll Over Earned Paid Depart?
Sure, workers might roll over any unused go away, however employers can cap the overall variety of hours at 40 per 12 months.
Do Employers Should Pay Out Unused Earned Paid Depart at Termination?
If the employer has a longtime coverage or observe of paying out trip time upon termination of employment or separation, then the identical coverage will apply to earned Paid go away advantages.
If an employer doesn’t pay out the unused earned paid go away on the termination of employment and an worker returns to work inside one 12 months, the worker will likely be entitled to the quantity of his or her unused go away on the time of rehire.
What Sort of Discover or Documentation Should an Worker Present to an Employer?
Discover as a result of an emergency have to be “cheap.” Nevertheless, the brand new regulation doesn’t outline what is affordable.
Absent an emergency circumstance, employers might require as much as 4 weeks’ discover of an worker’s intent to make use of earned paid go away.
Staff might use earned paid go away in increments of not less than one hour, until the employer chooses to permit smaller increments.
In a FAQs part on its web site, the MDOL, said that “[u]nless the go away is for greater than three consecutive days, the employer can’t required a medical notice or different documentation.”
Are There Posting Necessities?
Employers impacted by the brand new regulation might need to reevaluate their present insurance policies to adjust to the brand new regulation. The January 1, 2021, deadline is an efficient reminder to replace handbooks, guarantee correct classification of people as unbiased contractors, prepare supervisors on coping with go away requests, and implement time-tracking methods.
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