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Do I Have to Pay My Salaried Employees for Sick Days?

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Question: What is the law regarding not paying salaried employees for sick days?

Answer: Under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), an employer can legally deduct one or more full sick days from a salaried employee’s compensation as long as the deduction is in accordance with a bona fide sick leave policy or practice. This means that you cannot deduct partial-day absences from the employee’s pay without jeopardizing the employee’s status as an exempt employee under the FLSA. One additional caveat: you also want to make sure that this salaried employee satisfies at least one of the overtime exemptions to the FLSA. Simply paying an employee on a salary basis rather than on an hourly basis does not guarantee the exemption will be met.

This response is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion, nor is this column a substitute for formal legal assistance. For help with particular legal needs, members are invited to consult with ACCA’s LegalTools Counsel, Brooke Duncan III of Adams and Reese LLP. Mr. Duncan can be reached at 504-585-0220 or by email at

Hilary Atkins

Posted In: Legal

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