Chicago has joined a growing list of states and cities that require employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees. The paid sick leave provisions were added as an amendment to the Chicago Minimum Wage Ordinance – now named the Chicago Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave Ordinance – and take effect on July 1, 2017.
Employees are covered by the law if they physically perform work within the geographic boundaries of Chicago for at least two hours in any two-week period, and are eligible for paid sick leave if they work at least 80 hours within any 120-day period.
Employers must adhere to the law if they employ at least one person while operating a business within the city borders and are subjected to city license requirements. The Ordinance applies to all employers, regardless of the number of employees, applies to both exempt and non-exempt workers, and explicitly provides that it applies to domestic workers.
One hour of paid sick leave accrues for every 40 hours worked, and employees begin accruing on the first calendar day after employment begins. Employees can use a maximum of 40 hours of paid leave in a one-year period, and can use the leave for the following reasons:
- The employee is ill or injured, or needs to receive medical care.
- Caring for an ill or injured family member, or a family member receiving medical care.
- Being a domestic violence or sex offense victim.
- The employee’s workplace or their child’s school/childcare facility is closed due to a public health emergency.
- A 'covered employee' is an employee who performs at least two hours of work for his or her employer in any two-week period while physically inside of the geographic boundaries of Chicago.
- A 'covered employer' is any entity or person that employs at least one 'covered employee' while maintaining a business facility within the geographic boundaries of the city and being subjected to city license requirements.