Four more New Jersey cities enact sick leave laws

Four New Jersey municipalities—Passaic, Paterson, Irvington, and East Orange— recently enacted ordinances requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees (collectively, "the Ordinances"). The Ordinances will take effect in January 20151, or, for employees who are covered by a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), upon expiration of the CBA.2 Similar laws already have taken effect in Newark and Jersey City, as well as several jurisdictions across the country, including the States of Connecticut and California, and localities such as New York City, D.C., Seattle, San Diego, San Francisco, and Portland and Eugene, Oregon. This alert highlights key provisions of the Ordinances regarding employee rights and employer obligations, record-keeping and notice requirements, and enforcement and remedies.

Coverage

Under the Ordinances, an "employer" is any individual or entity except the federal, state, or city government. Equally broad is the term "employee," which includes any individual who works in the particular municipality for at least 80 hours, with the exception of certain public employees and, except for the Irvington Ordinance, members of a construction union who are covered by a CBA. Further, any or all of the requirements of the Ordinances may be waived as to unionized employees, if the waiver is contained in a CBA in express, clear and unambiguous terms.

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