Time Off for Vaccination: Do Employers Have to Pay?

The new OSHA mandate for mandatory vaccination for companies with 100+ employees can be difficult to follow.  Companies must navigate the rules to ensure their compliance.  One of the many questions received is whether or not those employers are required to pay for time off for vaccination.  Yes, those employers are required by the new mandate to pay.  There are a few rules that come with that requirement.

Rules to follow for time off for vaccination

If an employee receives the two-dose vaccination, they may take up to 8 hours, paid by their employer.  This 8 hours of pay is split between the two doses.  The pay covers travel to the vaccination site, time to actually get the vaccine, and time it takes to return to work.  This does not mean that employees should be paid a total of 8 hours flat.  If it only takes 1 hour for the first dose and 1 hour for the second does, they would be paid only for those 2 hours.  Pay is for the actual time it takes, not to exceed 8 hours.

In some cases, it may take longer than the allotted 8 hours.  If an employee takes more than 8 hours for the two-dose vaccination, it is up to the employer whether or not to pay additional time.  If it takes additional time that is reasonable, the time off must be granted.  This does not mean the employer is required to pay for that time off.  It is at the employer’s discretion to pay more than the allotted 8 hours.

If an employee chooses to get vaccinated on their own time, such as a normal weekend off, the employer is not required to pay for that time.

What if employees have side effects from the vaccination?

Per the mandate, employees may use up to 2 workdays of sick leave immediately following each dose.  This is only if they have side effects that stop them from working.  If an employee doesn’t have any sick time available, they must be granted 2 days off after each dose.

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Amber Hebert

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