Newly Enacted COVID-19 Vaccination Leave – Effective as of March 12, 2021

  • On March 12, 2021, Governor Cuomo signed a new law that allows employees in New York to take up to four hours of paid leave time, per vaccination, to get vaccinated for COVID-19, which takes effect immediately and will expire on December 31, 2022
  • The law adds Section 159-c to the New York Civil Service Law and Section 196-c to the New York Labor Law (NYLL)
  • This new leave entitlement affects both private and public employers and employees
  • Employees shall be provided a sufficient period of paid time, not to exceed four hours per vaccine injection, unless the employee is entitled to a greater number of hours of leave pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement or as otherwise authorized by the employer
  • COVID-19 vaccination leave cannot be charged against any other leave an employee is entitled to, including sick leave under Section 196-b of the NYLL
  • Private employers and employees are covered by the Section 196-c addition to the NYLL which also includes:
  • Paid leave of absence at employee’s regular rate of pay
  • Employers may not discriminate or retaliate against employees for taking leave

The Attorneys at Levene Gouldin & Thompson, LLP are available to provide advice and counsel concerning matters related to COVID-19.

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