Compliance Overview Provided By Eastern Benefits Group
As the 2016 U.S. presidential election draws near, employers should be prepared to handle requests from employees for time off from work to vote on Election Day, which is November 8, 2016.
Federal law does not require employers to provide their employees with time off to vote. However, many states have voting leave laws that allow employees to take time off to vote in certain circumstances. The specifics vary by state, but many of these voting leave laws:
Require the leave to be paid;
Impose a notice requirement on employees; and
Allow employers to designate the hours during which employees may be absent to vote.
Employers should be aware of the voting leave laws that apply to them and be prepared to comply with any applicable requirements.
Voting Laws in Massachusetts
All employers in the manufacturing, mechanical or mercantile industries must allow eligible employees to take leave to vote if employees request leave. An employee may request to leave work during the two hours after the polls open in the voting precinct, ward or town where the employee is entitled to vote. (Mass. General Laws 149, § 178)
For a full state by state breakdown of voting laws, click here.