On May 13, 2015, workers in Philadelphia may begin to acquire paid sick leave hours under the “Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces” Ordinance. Philadelphia becomes the 17th major city to pass a paid sick leave law.
Below are some FAQs that our clients have been asking:
Under this new law, for every 40 hours worked within the city of Philadelphia, employees are entitled to an hour of sick leave. You can only accumulate up to a maximum of 40 hours of sick leave in any year (unless the employer allows more). Unused paid sick leave carries over from year to year, though not past the maximum of 40 hours in a year. Employees must be employed for 90 days before being allowed to use sick leave..
The law covers employees working at employers with 10 or more workers. To determine whether an employer falls under the paid sick leave part of the law, full time, part time and temp workers are all counted. Additionally, employees at chain establishments all are covered under the law, even if the chain establishments have less than 10 workers.
There are a few exemptions to this new law. Independent contractors, adjunct professors, interns, seasonal employees, employees hired for less than six months, pool employees, and state and federal employees do not receive this benefit. The law does not cover unionized employees covered under a collective bargaining agreement, even if their coverage is less than that provided by the law. Employers with less than ten employees are only required to provide unpaid sick leave benefits.
Employees must provide advance notice (written or oral) of foreseeable sick leave. The sick leave covers family illnesses, preventative care such as routine checkups and diagnosis, care and treatment of existing health conditions. Employees can also request sick leave due to issues from being a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking.
Employees only need to provide documentation of their sick leave after two consecutive days. For illnesses this notice can be a healthcare professional’s note. Victims of domestic violence or sexual abuse have several option to document their need for leave. They can provide a healthcare professional’s note, a statement from a victims services organization, a police report, or a court order. In neither instance does the employer have the right to details of the illness or the violence.
Employers must notify employees of their right to sick leave, the terms of it, the guarantee against retaliation and the right to file complaints regarding violations of the ordinance. The law requires either a notice of these rights or a poster prepared by the city. They must also maintain records related to hours worked and sick time taken and payments related to it. Employers who fail to do so, may be implied to have violated the law.
Galfand Berger has been championing the rights of injured workers, consumers and individuals since 1947. We established the firm more than 65 years ago with one goal: to secure full and just compensation for people who have suffered injustices and injuries. Galfand Berger remains true to that mission.
Galfand Berger’s personal injury attorneys in Philadelphia work to protect the rights of people who have been injured as a result of car accidents, defective products, unsafe equipment and machinery, workplace and construction accidents, Workers’ Compensation claims, medical malpractice and any other serious injuries or accidents. Call us at 1-800-222-8792, email us [email protected] or contact us online for a free consultation.