Pennsylvania: Four Years Later, Paid Sick Leave Comes to Pittsburgh


All Employers with Pittsburgh, PA Employees


March 15, 2020


Contact HR On-Call

(888) 378-2456

The Pittsburgh Paid Sick Days Act was initially passed in August 2015, but met legal challenges that delayed its implementation until now.  The ordinance will finally go into effect on March 15, 2020.  The Mayor’s Office on Equity has published official guidelines on the Ordinance, detailing requirements for employers.  Below are key provisions of the ordinance.

  1. Eligibility:
    1. Covered Employee: All full-time and part-time employees working in Pittsburgh. For employees who travel to and/or perform work in Pittsburgh, the travel and working time within the city count as hours worked for the purpose of calculating sick leave benefits.
    2. Covered Employer: All private employers.
    3. Exemptions: Independent contractors, state or federal employees, members of a construction union covered by a valid collective bargaining agreement, and seasonal employees who are notified in writing at time of hire that they will work no more than 16 weeks during the calendar year.
  2. Usage: Employees can begin using PSL on the 120th calendar day after employment begins. PSL may be used as it is accrued.
  3. Leave Amounts:
    1. Rate: One hour of paid sick leave per 35 hours, accrued in whole-hour units.
    2. Cap: Maximum cap is dependent on employee headcount.
      1. 15 or more employees per year: 40 hours.
      2. 14 or fewer employees: 24 hours of unpaid sick time until March 15, 2021, at which point sick time must be paid.
    3. Carryover: Employees may carry over all hours up to the applicable accrual cap.
  4. Frontload: Employers may choose to frontload PSL at the beginning of each benefit year.
  5. Rehire: Employees rehired within six months of employment must be instated to their previously accrued and unused leave balance. Employers are not required to pay out accrued, unused PSL, but if the employer elects to do so there is no reinstatement requirement.
  6. Recordkeeping and Notice Requirements:
    1. Workplace Posting and Notice: Employers must conspicuously display a poster describing employees’ rights under the Act at every worksite, and provide a notice to employees.
    2. Employee Notice: Certification can be required after three consecutive days of absence for unforeseeable use of PSL.

Employers with existing paid leave may continue to utilize such policies, so long as it provides paid leave sufficient to meet the ordinance’s requirements for accrual and usage.  Notably, if an employer offers more paid leave than is required under the ordinance, the additional hours of leave are not subject to the ordinance.

Action Items

  1. Review the City of Pittsburgh Paid Sick Leave guidelines from the city’s website here.
  2. Have paid sick leave policies updated.
  3. Provide required notice to employees and display required poster.
  4. Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance.

Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.

© 2020 ManagEase

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply