During this year’s legislative session, Maryland’s General Assembly passed a paid sick leave bill that would require employers with 15 or more workers to provide five days of paid sick leave per year. This came after Governor Larry Hogan had began the legislative session by introducing a bill containing a less burdensome version of paid sick leave. Governor Hogan has now vetoed the bill passed by the legislature, setting up a showdown between the two branches.
At this stage, it is unclear if the legislature will be able to override the Governor’s veto. It appears as though it will be a close call the next time the General Assembly meets. Either way, it does appear likely that Maryland will adopt some form of paid sick leave in the near future. The details will be resolved by the political process, but employers should be prepared for a new legal burden.
What does this mean for you as an employer? While it is too early to tell exactly what a new law will require, it is apparent that, at a minimum, there will be a need to review and tailor existing paid time off policies to ensure compliance with the law. Based on the laws that have been passed in other states, there is a good chance that, aside from technical adjustments and certifications, most employers’ current existing paid time off policies will satisfy the substantive requirements. However, employers should monitor the situation and once a paid sick leave bill is signed into law, review it carefully to ensure the necessary steps are taken to conform existing policies to the requirements of the new law.
ABOUT RUSSELL BERGER
Russell Berger is an accomplished labor and employment attorney who is well-versed in litigating in both state and federal courts, as well as providing counsel to employers on employee matters. He represents employers, businesses and professional clients in employment disputes throughout the country. Mr. Berger primarily focuses on litigating and counseling clients regarding matters of minimum wage and overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act and state laws, wrongful termination, non-compete agreements, and employment and severance agreements. Mr. Berger’s practice also includes handling claims and providing counsel regarding retaliation, discrimination and harassment (under Title VII and state anti-discrimination laws), as well as under other federal statutes, such as the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), and American with Disabilities Act (ADA). He also provides general counsel to businesses, including with respect to commercial, contracting, and insurance matters.
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