Huge Advances Passed for Family Sick Leave

One piece of critical legislation that slipped under the radar this session will allow employees to use their sick days to care for more family members than just their young children. This new bill, signed into law by Governor Dayton on May 24th, allows employees to also use their sick leave benefits to care for their adult child, spouse, sibling, parent, grandparent or stepparent. This legislation does not add additional sick leave benefits to any employee, just increases the flexibility with which they can use them. This is a huge victory for families in Minnesota. Families can now care for each other without having to worry about taking days off or leaving sick family members alone at home.

A bill for an act
MN HF568

1.2 relating to employment; modifying use of personal sick leave benefits;amending
1.3 Minnesota Statutes 2012, sections 181.940, subdivision 4; 181.9413.

1.5    Section 1. Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 181.940, subdivision 4, is amended to read:
1.6    Subd. 4. Child. “Child” means an individual under 18 years of age or an individual
1.7 under age 20 who is still attending secondary school, except as otherwise provided.
1.8    Sec. 2. Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 181.9413, is amended to read:
1.11(a) An employee may use personal sick leave benefits provided by the employer
1.12 for absences due to an illness of or injury to the employee’s minor or adult child, spouse,
1.13 sibling, parent, grandparent, or stepparent, for such reasonable periods of time as the
1.14 employee’s attendance with the child may be necessary, on the same terms upon which
1.15 the employee is able to use sick leave benefits for the employee’s own illness or injury.
1.16 This section applies only to personal sick leave benefits payable to the employee from the
1.17 employer’s general assets.
1.18 (b) For purposes of this section, “personal sick leave benefits” means time accrued
1.19 and available to an employee to be used as a result of absence from work due to personal
1.20 illness or injury, but does not include short-term or long-term disability or other salary
1.21 continuation benefits.
1.22 (c) This section does not prevent an employer from providing greater sick leave
1.23 benefits than are provided for under this section, nor does it alter an employer’s existing
2.1 sick leave policies or labor agreements that allow the use of sick leave for the care of a
2.2 minor or adult child, spouse, sibling, parent, grandparent, or stepparent.
2.3 EFFECTIVE DATE.(a) This section is effective August 1, 2013, and applies to
2.4 sick leave used on or after that date, except as provided in paragraph (b).
2.5 (b) The effective date of this section for the state is July 1, 2015, or the effective date
2.6 of a collective bargaining agreement or compensation plan containing the changes in this
2.7 section that is approved under section 3.855, whichever is sooner.


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