Did you know about this? A new law goes into effect in Minnesota on January 1st of 2024 and if you are an employee in Minnesota that works at least eighty hours in a calendar year, this will mostly likely impact you.

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This law is known as the Minnesota's 'earned sick and safe time' law, or ESST. If your employer already meets the requirements of this new law, you won't notice a change at all. There's a lot of moving parts to it so let's break it all down.

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What Is This New Law?

As mentioned, this is the 'earned sick and safe time' law. Per the Minnesota Department Of Labor and Ministry, the new law is as follows:

Employers must provide each employee in Minnesota at least one hour of paid sick and safe time for every 30 hours worked, up to at least 48 hours of accrued ESST a year.

It should be noted that an employee in this instance is someone 'who works at least eighty hours in a year for an employer' in Minnesota. This does not apply to independent contractors.

What If Your Employer Already Meets These Requirements?

If an employer already has a leave policy like that of the new 'earned sick and safe time' law, you won't notice a change. Certain cities in Minnesota already have ordinances like this in place. Under this law, an employer can provide even more leave time so long as they meet the minimum requirements under the law.

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It should also be noted that the employer can call their leave plan whatever they want. It just has to meet the requirements of this new law.

What Can The Time Off Be Used For Under The New Law?

This may not differ from your current workplace policy, but there are a number of reasons you can use your earned sick and safe time once you accrue it in 2024, including the following:

  • A mental or physical illness, treatment or preventative care.
  • The mental or physical illness, treatment or preventative care of a family member.
  • Time off due to domestic abuse, sexual assault or stalking.
  • Time off due to domestic abuse, sexual assault or stalking of a family member.
  • Workplace closure due to weather or public emergency.
  • Workplace closure due to weather or public emergency of a family member.
  • Care facility closure due to weather or public emergency.
  • When sick and a health authority and/or health care professional deems you at risk of infecting others with a 'communicable' disease.
  • When a family member is sick and a health authority and/or health care professional deems a family member at risk of infecting others with a 'communicable' disease.

There is a long list of family members that qualify for you to use your 'earned sick and safe' time. You can see a full list on the Minnesota Department Of Labor and Ministry's website.

Other Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few other quick things to note before this new law goes into place in less than a month:

  • This does not apply to federal employees.
  • Employees that work for an air carrier as a flight deck or cabin crew member do not qualify under this new law.
  • You don't have to live in Minnesota to qualify. You just need to meet the requirements while working for a Minnesotan employer.
  • As of January 1st, employees will be begin earning this time from the moment they start their job.
  • Part time and temporary employees are eligible.

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