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Minnesota Implements Paid Sick and Safe Time Law: What Employers Need to Know

Jun 22, 2023

Effective January 1, 2024, Minnesota will enforce a new earned sick and safe time law, requiring employers to provide paid leave to employees working within the state. This law replaces the current sick and safe leave law, which remains in effect until December 31, 2023. The introduction of this legislation aims to prioritize employee well-being and ensure they have the necessary support during times of illness or personal emergencies. This article provides an overview of Minnesota's paid sick and safe time law and its implications for employers.

Understanding Sick and Safe Time

Sick and safe time is a paid leave that employers in Minnesota must provide to their employees. It can be utilized for various reasons, including an employee's personal illness, caring for a sick family member, or seeking assistance in cases of domestic abuse. This provision seeks to foster a healthier and more compassionate work environment.

Eligibility for Sick and Safe Time

To be eligible for sick and safe time, employees must have worked at least 80 hours in a year for an employer in Minnesota and must not be classified as independent contractors. Temporary and part-time employees are also eligible for this benefit. However, building and construction industry employees represented by a building and construction trades labor organization may be exempted from these requirements if a valid waiver is included in a collective bargaining agreement.

Accrual of Sick and Safe Time

Employees earn one hour of sick and safe time for every 30 hours worked, up to a maximum of 48 hours per year. However, employers have the option to agree to a higher accrual amount if they wish to provide additional benefits to their employees.

Compensation for Sick and Safe Time

Sick and safe time must be compensated at the same hourly rate the employee earns while working. This ensures that employees do not face financial hardships when utilizing their earned leave.

Approved Uses of Sick and Safe Time

Employees can use their accumulated sick and safe time for several purposes, including personal illness, medical treatment or preventive care for themselves or their family members, absence due to domestic abuse, closure of the workplace or care facility due to emergencies, and situations where an employee or family member may pose a risk of infecting others with a communicable disease.

Family Members Covered

The law specifies an extensive list of family members for whom an employee can use their sick and safe time. This includes children, spouses or registered domestic partners, siblings, parents, grandparents, grandchildren, in-laws, and individuals with a close association equivalent to a family relationship.

Employer Responsibilities

Apart from providing paid leave, employers are required to include the total number of accrued and available sick and safe time hours on employee earnings statements. They must also provide a notice, in both English and the employee's primary language if different, regarding earned sick and safe time. Additionally, if an employer maintains an employee handbook, it must include a sick and safe time notice. The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry will provide a uniform employee notice template and resources to assist employers in compliance.

Local Ordinances and Compliance

While statewide implementation of the earned sick and safe time law takes effect on January 1, 2024, it's important to note that several Minnesota cities, including Bloomington, Duluth, Minneapolis, and St. Paul, already have their own local ordinances in place. Employers must adhere to the most protective law applicable to their employees.


Minnesota's new earned sick and safe time law represents a significant step towards prioritizing the well-being of employees. By mandating paid leave for sickness and personal emergencies, the law ensures that employees can address their health and caregiving needs without sacrificing their livelihood. Employers should familiarize themselves with the requirements of this law, update their policies


Earned sick and safe time | Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry

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