BOSTON (CBS) – July 1 begins a new day for many workers in Massachusetts.
Many workers classified as part-time can start accruing paid sick time leave thanks to the new law.
Boston labor lawyer Nancy Puleo with Posternak Blankstein and Lund says one hour of sick time will be accrued for every 30 hours worked, up to a maximum of 40 hours per year.
This new law applies for small businesses with more than 11 employees. The law is wide reaching:
“Part-time, seasonal and temporary employees are now going to be entitled to paid sick time,” she said.
Many questions arise when considering seasonal employees, including plenty of businesses on Cape Cod that fall into this category.
Attorney General Maura Healey made it a little clearer when it comes to carrying over accrued sick time.
“So basically following a break of service between 4 and 12 months the employee’s still going to have the right to use their earned sick time,” Healey said.
Most of those companies are in scramble mode trying to comply with new law, which is putting burdens on payroll departments.
“Significant tracking and recording requirements. posting notice requirements….and there’s also the potential for abuse. That’s the other employer concern here,” Puleo said.
There could be penalties for such abuse.
“Employers can actually discipline employees that show a clear pattern of using earned sick time before and after holidays and weekends,” Puleo added.
There will be an adjustment period for many businesses. Some employers and clients of Puleo are concerned about how much cost will be associated with the change.
“One employer actually did the math. It’s going to cost them $72,000 a year,” Puleo said. “That’s either going to be passed on to their customers or impact their hiring decisions and their rate of pay.”
Ready or not, sick leave is here.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Jeff Brown reports