In light of all the recent storms, Connecticut employers should be reminded that the Connecticut Department of Labor’s rules on deducting paid time off (“PTO”) from an exempt employee’s PTO bank for office closures differ from federal law.  While federal law allows employers to deduct PTO from an exempt employee’s PTO bank for an office closure, the CT DOL prohibits this practice when the employer chooses to close the office.  By way of reminder, here is the CT DOL guidance on the deduction of PTO from an exempt employee’s PTO bank:

Inclement weather/Furlough days-Related Scenarios for Exempt Employees

  • Employer excuses exempt employee from work: Full salary must be paid. No deduction in salary is permissible. It is also not permissible to use fringe benefit (i.e., PTO) to cover the time.
  • Exempt employee requests day off because of the weather: Reduction in salary is permissible. Fringe benefits (PTO) may be used to cover the time off.
  • Employer excuses exempt employee sometime during the day because of worsening weather: Full salary must be paid. No use of fringe benefits to make up time is permissible.
  • Exempt employee asks to go home because of bad weather after starting work: Time off can be taken from fringe benefits, but employer must pay pro-rata portion of salary for the day to cover time actually worked. If employee has exhausted fringe benefit, the employer must still pay the full salary because the employee worked that day.
  • Employer tells employee that the usual place of work will not open for the day, but that work can still be performed either at home or at some location other than the usual place of work: Full salary must be paid.

CT DOL Guidance

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Photo of Patricia E. Reilly Patricia E. Reilly

Patricia E. Reilly, Chair of the Labor and Employment Practice Group, is an experienced litigator who represents clients in a wide range of cases including, employment discrimination and related torts, non-compete and restrictive covenants, wage and hour, breach of contract, unfair trade practices…

Patricia E. Reilly, Chair of the Labor and Employment Practice Group, is an experienced litigator who represents clients in a wide range of cases including, employment discrimination and related torts, non-compete and restrictive covenants, wage and hour, breach of contract, unfair trade practices, and business disputes. In addition to maintaining a thriving litigation practice, Tricia counsels clients on a variety of employment-related issues including hiring, firing, and discipline; wage and hour; state and federal FMLA; sexual harassment investigations and prevention; Title IX; pregnancy and disability accommodation; and avoidance of employment discrimination liability.

Tricia is listed as a leading Labor and Employment Lawyer in Chambers USA.  She is listed in Best Lawyers in America®, and in 2017, Best Lawyers in America® recognized her as “Lawyer of the Year”, New Haven, Litigation – Labor and Employment. Tricia is a member of the American Bar Association, the Connecticut Bar Association and the New Haven County Bar Association.  She received her B.A. from Wesleyan University and her J.D. from University of California, Berkeley School of Law.