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  1. #1

    Default Quitting a Job With Leftover Vacation and Sick Hours

    Do you get paid for unused sick/vacation hours? I'm planning on quitting my job, and I have unused paid days, both vacation days and sick days. Will I get reimbursed for these when I leave? It almost seems weird they'd give me these hours, especially the sick hours, but on the other hand, if I would simply forfeit them by quitting w/o using them, there's a clear incentive to just use them all up in the next few weeks before quitting (which would put a burden on them, but maximize things for me).

    so confused, i can see why it would make sense and why it wouldn't....

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    Under MA law, any accrued but unused vacation time must be paid out at termination. No such law applies to sick time.

    In MA, vacation time, once earned, is considered wages. Sick time is not, since it is available only for a limited purpose - that of keeping an employee whole in case of illness.

    It is important to note, particularly at the beginning of the calendar year, that the legal requirement is to pay out ONLY what time has accrued at the time of separation and not what you would have accrued throughout the year. As an easy to understand example:

    Company policy grants you 15 days for the year, accruing monthly. 15 days divided over 12 months is 1.25 days a month. If you quit (or are fired) in January, you are ONLY entitled to 1.25 days (plus whatever you may have left over from the preceding year, if any). You are not entitled to 15 days.

    I see a lot of questions from employees who wait until January to quit, believing they will be paid the entire year's allottment of vacation time. That is NOT required by law.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    damnit! lol. So, if I have like 20-40 hrs worth of sick time (unsure what exact numbers are) and plan on quitting, i basically need to either use those hours obnoxiously (like being sick 50% of my remaining time) to go through them, or otherwise i don't get to use them at all and they're gone. If i do what's best for me given my available options, it woudln't be good for them, which is why i thought they may just offer it back to you, but guess not.

    On the other hand, if i had, say, 3 days fo sick time, and my last 3 days employed there i was sick, in effect i'd be getting paid for my sick time. Kind of sketchy, but same thing in the end. As long as i'm sick and all..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    Sorry, but that won't work unless your employer chooses to allow it to work (and believe me, they will not be fooled). They would be free, legally, to count your last day of employment as the last day you actually worked. Nothing in MA law would require them to pay you for those last unworked three days with your unused sick time.'

  5. #5

    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    Would that be overcome if i worked a single day after the 3 vacation days? A single hour?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    No.

    I don't mean this offensively, but you don't seem to be getting it. You have NO legal right to sick time. It is not required by law. Unless you have a bona fide contract that guarantees it, your employer has no legal obligation to provide you with paid sick time, PERIOD. There is no Federal and no Massachusetts law that requires it. A policy that they will not pay out any sick time after notice is given is LEGAL. It would also be legal for them to withhold sick pay when your further actions made it clear that you took time off for the sole reason of getting your sick time.

    Face it. Unless your employer chooses to give it to you, your sick time is gone.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    Sorry if I came across like I didn't get what you mean, I did but just wasn't making myself clear enough lol.

    I haven't given my notice yet, so I could just be sick starting today, for 3 days, then give my notice upon getting back from being sick. (Also, it's an 'at will' type job I believe, so I'm not even sure if i'm expected to give 2 weeks).

    But yeah, basically I'm still a regular employee there, with sick time available. It seems silly to just give my notice, and forfeit my sick time, when i could just use the sick time, then give notice. I'd work less hours between now and my last day, and get paid the same. Is that on point? As long as I don't give my official notice before using the sick time, and as long as I am on the clock after using my sick time, it cannot be voided? (sorry to keep this going, just want to make sure i'm doing this properly. And btw I seriously appreciate your fast / informative replies)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
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    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    Unless you have a bona fide, enforceable contract that specifically says otherwise, your employer can void your sick time any time he feels like it.

    You do not have any legal entitlement to sick pay under any Federal or Massachusetts law, no matter what the circumstance.

    Sick time is for one reason only; to keep you whole when you are sick. It is not additional paid time off to be used at your convenience. You can, if your employer chooses to do so, be fired for using sick time when you are not sick. There are no circumstances whatsoever (again barring an enforceable contract) under which your employer is required to provide you with paid sick time.

    I don't know how to make it any more clear.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    Quote Quoting cbg
    View Post
    You do not have any legal entitlement to sick pay under any Federal or Massachusetts law, no matter what the circumstance.
    lol yeah, no fooling. I'll still get to use it tho, so who cares about entitlement?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    17,942

    Default Re: Quitting a job with leftover vacation and sick hours in Massachusetts

    You may get to use it, if your employer chooses to allow it. They may; I'm not saying they won't.

    What I am saying is that there are no circumstances under which the law is going to force them to pay it to you. If you receive it, and again I'm not saying you won't, it will be because your employer chooses to do so.

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