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Sick leave and other time off

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Question: I wanted to know what other companies do for time off.  Our company offers 2 weeks' vacation (3 weeks' after 10 years) plus 5 sick days each year, which can accumulate up to 30 days (sick leave only).  I have used all my vacation due to an emergency with my father-in-law and took a week's vacation.  I am short one day to attend my niece's wedding and was going to take the day off without pay.  Evidently, we are not allowed to due this.  If I do decide to take this off, then it will affect my review.  Can you take time off without pay if you want?

Related question: How does your company offer time off for doctor appointments? Can you use sick leave by the hour or can you take only in 4- or 8-hour increments (1/2 or full day off)?  -- Kenda


Kenda, I think your company's policies will decide how you take your time and if it will affect your review. But you may want to approach your manager or HR about borrowing that day from next year in order to attend the wedding. Since your father-in-law's emergency was an out-of-the-ordinary circumstance and they may be understanding of that. If they are aware of this day you need off and you simply "call out" that day...not a good idea. Try to be up front with them and if you still can't get the day off, I know your neice will understand.

As far as sick time, my company does allow us to take small increments of time, for appointments for ourselves or our immediate family. But not every company has these great benefits and you need to work within your own company's policies.

Good luck.

We can use our time, both vacation and sick time in increments of 1/10 of an hour (.1 is six minutes). We can also take a day off without pay if we don't have any vacation time. It seems very illogical and insensitive to expect no one to miss work for any reason simply because they have no vacation time left. Emergencies arise. I think I would discuss this with them. I worked with one guy who always got what he wanted because he nagged continually until he got it. It's sad but true, his squeaky wheel always got greased!

We can take sick time for doctor appointments for ourselves and our immediate family. We used to have to do 4 or 8 hour increments, but that changed with new software.

We also get to use comp. time (overtime hours at 1.5 equals comp. time). Some supervisors don't like it because it allows staff to be away more, but it is a great way to reward employees who can choose to get paid overtime or accrue comp. time. Sometimes I choose half and half.

Thank you all for your comments. This is great!! Kathy how can you take your sick time now with the new software?

I am the companies first and only full-time employee so as things arise we discuss them.


At our company, we accumulate and use personal time for vacations, sick days, and personal days. We are allowed to take time off in 1 hour increments. If necessary, we can "borrow" up to 20 hours of personal time, but only with the supervisor's approval.

You'll have to judge your boss's character on this issue. Some will understand the priority of outside issues, while others see work as your #1 priority, and will frown upon you taking off additional time.

Could you ask about flexing your hours that payperiod? Work longer days so that you have worked the appropriate number of hours. You don't say that taking the day off without pay is a terminable offence, but that your review be impacted by doing so. Can you tell them you are going to take the day and deal with the fall out during your next review? I think you would be in big trouble if you called off sick after being turned down for the day off. You can NOT be the first or only person who has needed additional time, maybe someone else can tell you how they solved the problem. I think this issue is why so many companies have gone to PTO time instead of designating so many days to vacation and so many to sick.

We are able to take time off in 15 minute increments. I think time off is often guided by the computer program or company that does does the payroll.

I work full-time for a non-profit organization. We get 1 sick day per month = 12 days per year, which can be used anytime during the year, but not carried over. We have 20 vacation days and can carry over 5 - that have to be used by March 31st of the following year. We can borrow up to 5 days of vacation only the first year employed. We have 4 personal days (can be taken in 1/2 day increments) and 4 family illness days that cannot be carried over. The family illness days are for taking spouse,kids,parents etc. to medical appointments or if spouse, kids, parents are sick, etc. We also are allowed Permissive Medical Time for medical appointments/tests. We have the usual death in the family, jury duty, and agency leave and leave with no pay. Secretarial staff is not allowed to earn comp. time, but we can flex our schedule. All has to be approved by an immediate supervisor.

Maybe you should try discussing your reason for needing the day off with your supervisor. Or offer to make up the hours another day - or work a few hours extra each day to make up for the time. We can do this with Supervisor's permission - called a flex schedule. We usually have to make up the hours before the date we need off.

I allow my staff to flex their hours to make up time for doctor's appointments, children's school activities,etc... This allows them to keep there personal/vacation time for instances when they are taking larger increments of time and/or a whole day. Maybe your supervisor would be open to you flexing hours.

Tina :-)

My company uses PTO and we can use it in 1-hour increments. I didn't like this at first but I now see the value in it. Ask your supervisor if you can work a flex schedule to make up the time the week of the wedding. Also, I noticed that you said you are the company's first full-time employee, do some research and then give this to them. Alot of major companies have moved to PTO so you should be able to find some great examples to share with your supervisor.

Our employees are allowed to take unpaid time off with the Dept. Manager's approval, but the request must be made two weeks in advance. Our Managers have never turned down anyone for legitimate and reasonable reasons. We also allow employees to borrow up to five vacation days from the following year.

Regarding time off for doctors appointments, the majority of our employees are hourly shift workers (5am-1pm or 12pm-8pm) and can usually make appointments either after work, or before coming to work. Therefore, part days off are not allowed.

Our employees receive four personal days off each year in addition to vacation so if necessary we can use vacation or personal days for appointments.

Kendra,you mentioned you took a week's vacation for an emergency with my father-in-law. If the vacation time used was for a medical leave with your father-in-law, you may want to ask your manager to review this situation. In our state, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) may cover this situation. It is, however, unpaid time. Since you used 5 days of your vacation for this instance, if again this was for a medical leave, it would seem your manager could review the information and grant 8 hours without pay. If you are having trouble working things out with your manager, you may want to consider talking to your human resources representative.

We have Paid Time Off (PTO) time and flex time. The amount of PTO time depends on years of service. PTO covers bereavement, holidays, jury duty, planned PTO , FMLA - unpaid, workers comp, and time without pay. Employees primarily use this time to cover vacations, sick time, and doctor visits. Non exempts can take their PTO time in 1 hour increments. Exempts can take their PTO time in 4 hour increments. Up to 40 hours of PTO time may be carried over to the next year.

Because the amount of PTO time that is available to employees, unpaid PTO time is very rare. If it is granted, it may be for 8 hours within the year (at most).

We also have flex time. Everyone is required to be at work during core hours. For example, core hours in a compnay could be between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Our unpaid lunch times must occur between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. We can chose to take between one-half hour to one and one-half hours. We just need to get in an 8 hour work day. How we adjust our starting time is dependent upon our needs and the business needs. We work with our managment and co-workers to come up with our "typical" starting hours. We communicate any changes in our schedules.

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