The paid leave for all workers act takes effect January 1, 2024.
The Department of Labor is in the process of preparing guidance and other resources and materials to educate employees and assist employers with compliance. If you would like to submit a question or comment to inform IDOL’s outreach and compliance assistance efforts, you may do so by emailing: DOL.PaidLeave@illinois.gov
Read the Law: 820 ILCS 192/Paid Leave for All Workers Act.
Governor JB Pritzker in March 2023 signed SB208 into law, making Illinois the third state in the nation, and the first in the Midwest, to mandate paid time off to be used for any reason. The historic legislation provides employees with up to 40 hours of paid leave during a 12-month period, meaning approximately 1.5 million workers will begin earning paid time off starting in 2024.
Under existing law, workers are not guaranteed pay when taking time off for sick leave, childcare, mental health reasons, medical appointments, vacation, or any other reason. Starting on March 31st, 2024, or 90 days following commencement of employment, workers can begin using their earned time off for any reason without the requirement of providing documentation to their employer under the Paid Leave for Workers Act.
This new law applies to every employee working for an employer in Illinois, including domestic workers and farmers, but does exclude independent contractors. The City of Chicago and Cook County have an existing paid leave ordinance in place; employees and employers in those two geographic regions will be subject to those ordinances. The law will also exempt employees covered by a collective bargaining agreement in the construction industry and parcel delivery industry.
The legislation provides that paid leave shall accrue at the rate of one hour for every 40 hours worked. Employees will be paid their full wage while on leave and tipped workers will be paid the minimum wage in their respective locale. An employer cannot require an employee to find their replacement for the leave.
This information provided is intended for general information purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Your employment law attorney can provide you with personalized guidance and ensure that your paid sick leave policies and practices are in full compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
Once you have determined the details of your paid leave program, contact your payroll account representative to discuss your 2024 paid leave setup.
Paid Leave for All Workers Act FAQ (Visit site for a full and current list of FAQ’s):
My employer already provides paid time off. Do they have to add another 40 hours of leave under the Act?
An employer who already offers paid leave benefits that meet the minimum requirements of the Act does not have to add additional time.
Does the Act apply to part-time employees, or just full-time employees?
The Act doesn’t distinguish between part time, full time, or seasonal employees. Both full-time and part-time workers are covered by this Act.
Can an employer front-load paid leave time at the beginning of the year?
Yes, an employer may front-load paid leave time by giving a full year’s worth of leave that meets the minimum requirements of the Act to an employee at the beginning of the year.
Can an employer require employees to accrue paid leave time over the course of the year?
Yes, an employer may require their employees to accrue paid leave time based on number of hours worked, at a rate of one hour of paid leave for every 40 hours worked.
Notably, while a part-time worker might not accrue the full 40 hours of leave provided for in the law by the end of the year, they might accrue fewer hours of leave, based on the number hours they’ve worked.
If an employer frontloads an employee’s paid leave at the beginning of the 12-month period, and the employee uses all of their leave and then quits before the end of the 12-month period, can the employer make the employee repay the paid leave?
No, an employer may not make an employee repay paid leave time that was frontloaded at the beginning of the 12-month period. Benefits that have already been provided may not be retroactively diminished.
Must paid leave provided under the Act be paid out upon an employee’s termination, resignation, or retirement?
PLAW does not require payout of unused leave unless the leave is credited to the employee’s paid time off bank or employee vacation account; however, employers should additionally consider their vacation payout obligations under the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act.
Paid Leave for All Workers Act. Retrieved from https://labor.illinois.gov/laws-rules/paidleave.html
Paid Leave for All Workers Act FAQ. Retrieved from https://labor.illinois.gov/faqs/paidleavefaq.html