Illinois does not require employers to provide sick day benefits to its employees, either paid or unpaid. However, Illinois, of course, is subject to the Family and Medical Leave Act-a federal law.
In Cook County and Chicago, effective July 1, 2017, there is a sick leave “ordinance” that goes into effect 180 days after employment begins. This must be posted in a conspicuous location. This covers every employer, including domestic workers, and regardless of the number of employees in the company. The only requirement is that the employee works in Cook County for at least 80 hours in any 120-day period, and in any 2-week period, the employee must perform at least 2 hours of work for the employer while being physically present within Chicago/Cook County. Pursuant to that, there is 1 hour of paid sick leave accrued for every 40 hours worked (capped at 40 hours in any 12-month period). Any left-over time accrued can be carried over to the next 12-month period up to half of the employee’s unused accrued paid sick leave (up to a maximum of 20 hours).
Please note that the Illinois Department of Labor has a Sick Leave Act (Public Act 99-0841) that took effect January, 1, 2017. Pursuant to that Act, employers are required to allow employees to use at least a portion of the sick leave already available to them, under any existing employer policy, to care for certain relatives such as a spouse, child, sibling, parent, in-law, grandchild, grandparent, or stepparent for a reasonable amount of time as the employee’s absence may be necessary, and on the same terms on which the employee is allowed to use sick leave for his or her own illness. The amount of time that can be used to care for a relative is “an amount not less than the personal sick leave that would be accrued during 6 months at the employee’s then current rate of entitlement.” It is at employer’s discretion to allow more. It is important to realize that this does not apply to employees who work for an employer that does not have personal sick leave benefits in place the employees themselves.
Cari and her team are available to assist entrepreneurs and provide counsel on a myriad business law issues including employment law. Rincker Law, PLLC can assist businesses throughout their formation and the development of any employment handbook.