Earned Sick Time Act - Alert (For churches in New York City)

Earned Sick Time Act - Alert (For churches in New York City)

Ross Williams


Dear Pastors, Finance Chairs and Treasurers,

The message is applicable only to churches located within New York City.

I recently received a notice about a new law, which requires action by May 1, 2014

On March 20 2014, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law an amendment to the EARNED SICK TIME ACT. The Act is scheduled to go into effect on April 1, 2014. The amendment expands the law and covers more employers as well as more industries than the original law.

The Act requires most employers to accrue “Paid” Sick Leave, and for a small amount of employers, to accrue “Unpaid” Sick Leave.

Accrual of Sick Leave:
Employers who employ more than 5 employees will have to establish a “Calendar Year”. Their employees, who work in NYC for more than 80 hours in the “calendar year”, will accrue as of their date of hire, (or April 1, 2014, whichever is later), 1 hour of Paid Sick Leave for every 30 hours of work, up to a maximum of 40 hours per calendar year.

Employers with less than 5 employees will have to establish the same system to accrue “Unpaid Sick Leave”. That is, they will only have to allow the employee to take the time off for sick leave, and will not have to “Pay” the employee for the sick time off taken.

Usage of accrued time:
Employees can begin using their Accrued Sick Leave as of July 3, 2014 or 120 days from their date of hire, (whichever is later), up to a maximum of 40 hours per Calendar Year, for the care and treatment of themselves and their family member.

Carryover of Accrued time:
Employees will carry over up to 40 hours of unused sick leave to the next calendar year; however, an employee cannot use more than 40 hours of sick leave in any given calendar year.

Notice to Employees:
Employers will need to give all their existing employees a notice of the employee’s right under the act by May 1, 2014, and to their new hires on the commencement of their employment. The notice must be given in English, or the employee’s primary language, if that language is available on the Department of Consumer Affairs’ website, (model notice is attached).

Where can I find out more information?
The NYC Department of Consumer Affairs published a list of documents to assist employers in complying with the law.  

For more information:
1. Paid Sick Leave: Frequently asked questions
2. Paid Sick Leave: What Employers Need to know
3. Paid Sick Leave: Notice to Employees

What you need to do:
Being that this act is new to NYC and a lot of questions might come to mind, we encourage you to review the attached documents to ensure that your company’s accrual and paid sick time policies comply with the requirements under the act.  The NYC Department of Consumer Affairs has specially published these documents in simple English so that every employer can understand the requirements of the act.

Hassle Free Compliance:
If your company does not want to bother with tracking the accrual of sick hours, you can choose to comply with this new law by simply allowing your employees to take 40 hours of (paid) leave each calendar year, for sick or vacation purposes, and by giving your employees the necessary notification of their rights.