School’s out for summer… And that means many employees are requesting time off for family vacations, making now a great time for your business to review its vacation policy.
Vacation policies must be compliant with California law and also meet company needs. While paid vacation is not mandatory in California, if an employer has offered or agreed to it (through a policy, contract, etc…), an employee has the right to expect it. Therefore, once you decide to provide vacation time to employees, you must remain vigilant to a number of potential downsides and legal obstacles.
A few key issues to address in your vacation policy include:
· Adequate guidelines covering the use of vacation time, such as requiring advance notice, manager approval, etc…
· Avoid any suggestion of the possibility of a discriminatory approach to approving / denying vacation request
· Ensuring that non-exempt employees do not work during their vacation time (i.e., telephone calls, text messages or email on their mobile devices)
· Limit the maximum time that may be accrued if vacation time can roll over into the following year
· Whether employees may receive pay in lieu of vacation
· Whether vacation time must be taken in specified increments
· Whether a holiday that falls during a vacation period will be treated as a vacation day
· When vacation may be or must be substituted for unpaid leave under the Family Medical Leave Act or any other leave laws, including equivalent state laws
This list is not exhaustive. For an extensive analysis of your company’s vacation policy and/or employee handbook, contact experienced business attorney Drew E. Pomerance today.