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HF 2461

as introduced - 88th Legislature (2013 - 2014) Posted on 06/21/2017 11:01am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language. underscored = added, new language.

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A bill for an act
relating to employment; providing for earned sick and safe time; proposing
coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 181; repealing Minnesota
Statutes 2013 Supplement, section 181.9413.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

[181.9441] EARNED SICK AND SAFE TIME.

Subdivision 1.

Definitions.

(a) For the purposes of this section, the following terms
have the meanings given.

(b) "Child" means a minor or adult: biological child, adopted child, foster child,
grandchild, stepchild, legal ward, or a person to whom the covered employee stands in
loco parentis.

(c) "Covered employee" means an employee who has been employed for not less
than 30 days by the employer from whom earned sick and safe time is requested.

(d) "Domestic abuse" has the meaning given in section 518B.01.

(e) "Employee" has the meaning given in section 177.23, subdivision 7, except that
for the purpose of this section, employee includes any individual employed in a bona fide
executive, administrative, or professional capacity, or a salesperson who conducts no more
than 20 percent of sales on the premises of the employer, and includes recipients of public
benefits who are engaged in work activity as a condition of receiving public assistance.

(f) "Employer" means any individual, partnership, association, corporation, business,
trust, the state and any political subdivision of the state, or any person or group of persons
acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an employer in relation to an employee.

(g) "Extended family member" means any individual related by blood or affinity
whose close association with the covered employee is the equivalent of a family
relationship.

(h) "Grandparent" means a parent of a parent.

(i) "Earned sick and safe time" means leave that is compensated at the same hourly
rate as the covered employee earns from employment and is provided by an employer to a
covered employee for the purposes described in subdivision 3.

(j) "Parent" means:

(1) a biological parent, foster parent, stepparent, adoptive parent, or legal guardian
of a covered employee or a covered employee's spouse; or

(2) a person who stood in loco parentis when the covered employee or covered
employee's spouse was a minor child.

(k) "Sexual assault" means an act that constitutes a violation under sections 609.342
to 609.3453 or 609.352.

(l) "Sibling" means a biological, foster, adoptive, or step-sibling.

(m) "Stalking" has the meaning given in section 609.749.

(n) "Spouse" means a person to whom the covered employee is legally married
under the laws of Minnesota.

Subd. 2.

Accrual of earned sick and safe time.

(a) A covered employee shall accrue
a minimum of one hour of earned sick and safe time for every 30 hours worked. A covered
employee may not accrue more than 72 hours of earned sick and safe time in a calendar
year unless the employer agrees to a higher amount, except as provided in paragraph (b).

(b) Covered employees of an employer that employs fewer than 21 employees may
not accrue more than 40 hours of earned sick and safe time in a calendar year unless
the employer agrees to a higher amount.

(c) Covered employees who are exempt from overtime requirements under United
States Code, title 29, section 213(a)(1), are deemed to work 40 hours in each work week
for purposes of accruing earned sick and safe time, except that a covered employee whose
normal work week is less than 40 hours will accrue earned sick and safe time based upon
the normal work week.

(d) Earned sick and safe time under this section begins to accrue at the
commencement of employment of the covered employee.

(e) Covered employees shall be entitled to use accrued earned sick and safe time
beginning 90 calendar days following commencement of their employment. After 90
calendar days of employment, covered employees may use earned sick and safe time
as it is accrued.

(f) Earned sick and safe time shall be carried over to the following calendar year.

(g) An employer complies with this section if the employer has a sick and safe time
policy that makes available an amount of sick and safe time at least equal to and which
may be used for the same purposes and under the same conditions as earned sick and safe
time under this section.

(h) An employer may adopt or retain sick and safe time policies that are more
generous to a covered employee than the requirements under this section.

Subd. 3.

Use of earned sick and safe time.

(a) Earned sick and safe time must be
provided to a covered employee by an employer for:

(1) a covered employee's:

(i) mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition;

(ii) need for medical diagnosis, care, or treatment of a mental or physical illness,
injury, or health condition; or

(iii) need for preventive medical or health care;

(2) care of a spouse, child, parent, grandparent, sibling, or extended family member:

(i) with a mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition;

(ii) who needs medical diagnosis, care, or treatment of a mental or physical illness,
injury, or health condition; or

(iii) who needs preventive medical or health care;

(3) absence due to domestic abuse, sexual assault, or stalking of the covered
employee or covered employee's child, spouse, parent, grandparent, sibling, or extended
family member, provided the absence is to:

(i) seek medical attention related to physical or psychological injury or disability
caused by domestic abuse, sexual assault, or stalking;

(ii) obtain services from a victim services organization;

(iii) obtain psychological or other counseling;

(iv) seek relocation due to domestic abuse, sexual assault, or stalking; or

(v) take legal action, including preparing for or participating in any civil or criminal
legal proceeding related to or resulting from domestic abuse, sexual assault, or stalking; and

(4) closure of the covered employee's place of business by order of a public official
due to a public emergency, or a covered employee's need to care for a child whose school
or place of care has been closed by order of a public official due to a public emergency.

(b) An employer may require reasonable notice of the need for earned sick and safe
time. If the need for the leave is foreseeable, an employer may require advance notice of
the intention to use earned sick and safe time, but in no case shall require more than seven
days' advance notice. If the need is not foreseeable, an employer may require a covered
employee to give notice of the need for earned sick and safe time as soon as practicable.

(c) For earned sick and safe time of more than three consecutive days, an employer
may require reasonable documentation that the earned sick and safe time is covered by
paragraph (a). For earned sick and safe time under paragraph (a), clause (1) or (2),
reasonable documentation shall include a signed statement by a health care professional
indicating the need for earned sick and safe time. For earned sick and safe time under
paragraph (a), clause (3), a court record or documentation signed by an employee or
volunteer working for a victims services organization, an attorney, a police officer, or other
anti-violence counselor shall be considered reasonable documentation.

(d) An employer may not require, as a condition of a covered employee's using earned
sick and safe time, that the covered employee search for or find a replacement worker to
cover the hours during which the covered employee is using earned sick and safe time.

(e) Accrued earned sick and safe time may be used in the smaller of hourly
increments or the smallest increment that the employer's payroll system uses to account
for absences or use of other time.

Subd. 4.

Retaliation prohibited.

An employer shall not retaliate against a covered
employee because the covered employee has requested earned sick and safe time, used
earned sick and safe time, or made a complaint or filed an action to enforce a right to
earned sick and safe time under this section.

Subd. 5.

Notice and posting.

(a) Employers shall give notice that covered
employees are entitled to earned sick and safe time, the amount of earned sick and safe
time, and the terms of its use under this section, that retaliation against covered employees
who request or use earned sick and safe time is prohibited, and that each covered employee
has the right to file a complaint or bring a civil action if earned sick and safe time is
denied by the employer or the covered employee is retaliated against for requesting or
using earned sick and safe time.

(b) Employers may comply with this section by supplying covered employees
with a notice in English and other appropriate languages that contains the information
required in paragraph (a).

(c) Employers may comply with this section by displaying a poster in a conspicuous
and accessible place in each establishment where covered employees are employed which
contains all information required under paragraph (a).

(d) The commissioner shall create and make available to employers for their use
in complying with this subdivision posters that contain the information required under
paragraph (a).

Subd. 6.

Rulemaking; investigations.

(a) The commissioner shall adopt rules for
implementing this section including, but not limited to, requirements for documentation
by employers demonstrating compliance with this section.

(b) The commissioner shall have enforcement authority and powers as provided
under section 175.20 to administer this section.

Subd. 7.

Remedies.

(a) Any person aggrieved by a failure of an employer to provide
earned sick and safe time as required by this section may bring an action in district
court against the employer. A prevailing plaintiff in an action under this paragraph is
entitled to recover the full amount of accrued earned sick and safe time, plus any actual
damages suffered as a result of the employer's failure to provide earned sick and safe
time, and reasonable attorney fees. A prevailing plaintiff is also entitled to any other
appropriate legal or equitable relief as determined by the court, including but not limited
to reinstatement in employment.

(b) A covered employee subjected to retaliation in violation of this section may
bring an action in district court against the employer. A prevailing plaintiff in an action
under this paragraph is entitled to recover damages and reasonable attorney fees, and other
appropriate legal or equitable relief as determined by the court.

(c) Any person aggrieved by a violation of this section may file a complaint with the
attorney general. The filing of a complaint with the attorney general does not preclude
the filing of a civil action under paragraph (a) or (b). The attorney general may bring a
civil action in district court to enforce this section on behalf of any person. The attorney
general may request injunctive relief and, in the case of a willful violation, imposition of a
fine of $1,000 per violation payable to the state.

(d) An action authorized by this subdivision may be filed no later than five years
from the date the alleged violation occurred.

(e) Persons filing an action under this subdivision may seek certification as a class,
consistent with the requirements of law and court rule.

Subd. 8.

Confidentiality and nondisclosure.

If an employer possesses health
or medical information or information pertaining to domestic abuse, sexual assault,
or stalking about a covered employee or covered employee's child, parent, spouse,
grandparent, sibling, or extended family member, such information shall be treated
as confidential and not disclosed except to the affected covered employee or with the
permission of the affected covered employee.

Subd. 9.

Encouragement of more generous sick and safe time policies; no effect
on more generous policies.

(a) Nothing in this section shall be construed to discourage or
prohibit an employer from the adoption or retention of an earned sick and safe time policy
more generous than required under this section.

(b) Nothing in this section shall be construed as diminishing the obligation of an
employer to comply with any contract, collective bargaining agreement, employment
benefit plan, or other agreement providing more generous sick and safe time to a covered
employee than required under this section.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed as diminishing the rights of public
employees regarding paid leave or use of leave as provided in section 43A.1815.

Subd. 10.

Termination, separation, transfer.

Nothing in this subdivision may be
construed as requiring financial or other reimbursement to a covered employee from an
employer upon the covered employee's termination, resignation, retirement, or other
separation from employment for accrued earned sick and safe time that has not been
used. If a covered employee is transferred to a separate division, entity, or location, but
remains employed by the same employer, the covered employee is entitled to all earned
sick and safe time accrued at the prior division, entity, or location and is entitled to use
all earned sick and safe time as provided in this section. When there is a separation from
employment and the covered employee is rehired within 12 months of separation by the
same employer, previously accrued earned sick and safe time that had not been used must
be reinstated. A covered employee is entitled to use accrued earned sick and safe time and
accrue additional earned sick and safe time at the commencement of reemployment.

An employer may loan earned sick and safe time to a covered employee in advance
of accrual by the covered employee.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective 180 days following final enactment.

Sec. 2. SEVERABILITY.

If any provision of this act or application thereof to any person or circumstance is
judged invalid, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the act
which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the
provisions of this act are declared severable.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 3. REPEALER.

Minnesota Statutes 2013 Supplement, section 181.9413, is repealed.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective 180 days following final enactment.

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