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Paid Sick Leave for COVID Vaccination Recovery

Own a small business in New York? Here are a few guidance rules issued by the NY Department of Labor (NYDOL) clarifying that the state’s paid sick leave law allows workers to use their paid sick leave to recover from the side effects and adverse reactions to the COVID-19 vaccination.


The New York leave law mandates employers to provide paid sick leave to employees. This law is applicable to all businesses and organizations that employ more than 5 workers or make an annual net income of more than $1 million. Smaller businesses with fewer than 5 employees or less than $1 million net income also have to provide unpaid sick leave. Depending on the size of the firm, employers must provide between 40 to 56 hours of leave per employee.


You should also be aware that New York has passed separate laws regarding paid leave:

  • Paid sick leave for employees requiring to a COVID-19 quarantine or isolation order (at least 5 days)

  • Paid employee leave for COVID-19 vaccination (appointment and recovery)

These laws are meant to act as incentives for employees who aren’t willing to miss a day of work to go take the COVID-19 vaccine. Since New York state laws already allow sick time for employees to look after physical and mental conditions regardless if they have been diagnosed, the state’s DoL concluded that you, as a New-York based employer, are already obligated to honor your staff’s desire to use their earned sick leave to recover from the physical side-effects of the COVID-19 vaccination.


In general, allowing employees to use sick leave to recover from ailments not only helps them recover quickly, but also reduces your health insurance costs by preventing their situations from getting worse and requiring hospital treatment. If things do get worse, it’s safe to have a good health insurance plan to fall back on so that you can control your company’s costs in these hard times.


NY Small Health works with companies like UnitedHealthcare to provide you with a number of insurance plans, networks, and benefits. Find out what NY Small Health can do to help you navigate through the haystack of laws, insurance policies, and guidances to find the health insurance plan that meets the needs of your staff - and stays within your budget.


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