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Requirements for Arizona employers to stay in compliance with new paid sick leave law

In November, 2016, voters in the State of Arizona adopted Proposition 206, known as The Fair Wages and Healthy Families Initiative. As of July 1, 2017, all employers in Arizona must provide employees with paid sick leave. The permitted uses of this leave are very broad, encompassing not just the employee’s own illness, but also leave for the illness of family members. Leave may also be used to address other kinds of needs for time off, such as time off that may be required as a result of domestic or sexual violence.

In addition to providing for leave for a broad variety of purposes, the law imposes several very specific compliance obligations for employers. A number of these are the following:

  • Requiring that all employees be provided with leave, including part time and temporary employees;
  • Providing for carryover of leave from year to year;
  • Requiring employers who require employees to provide notice prior to taking foreseeable leave to have a written policy regarding that notice;
  • Requiring that leave must begin to accumulate on the first day of employment, but allowing employers to restrict use of leave in the first ninety days of employment;
  • Prohibiting retaliation against employees for using or requesting paid leave, or exercising any right guaranteed by the law; and
  • Requiring employers to keep very specific records and provide notice of the right to paid sick leave to employees.

There are additional requirements of this law, and employers in Arizona (or considering operating in Arizona) should ensure that their time off policies, along with related policies regarding time and attendance, are compliant with the law.

This post was drafted by Helen Holden, an attorney in the Phoenix, AZ office of Spencer Fane LLP. For more information, visit spencerfane.com.