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Nevada Requires Paid COVID-19 Vaccination Leave & Modifies Existing Paid Sick Leave

Paid COVID-19 Vaccination Leave

On June 9, 2021, Governor Steve Sisolak signed legislation (SB 209) which requires private employers with 50 or more employees in Nevada to provide their employees with the following paid COVID-19 vaccination leave:

  • Two consecutive hours of paid leave if they are getting a one-dose vaccine; or
  • Four hours of paid leave in total, comprised of two consecutive hours per absence if they are getting a two-dose vaccine at two separate times.

The paid leave law is effective immediately and is set to expire on December 31, 2023. There is an exception to the paid leave requirements for employers in their first two years of operation.

This paid leave is in addition to an employee’s right to meal and rest periods but:

  • Cannot be used when calculating an employee’s overtime hours; and
  • Does not apply to an employer with an onsite COVID-19 vaccine clinic where employees can get vaccinated during their regular working hours.

Employees must give their employer a minimum of 12 hours’ advance notice that they intend to take the leave; however, they cannot be denied the right to use the leave or required to find a replacement worker as a condition of using it.

The law does not indicate whether employers may request documentation or other information as evidence that an employee has used leave for a permissible reason and is also silent on the rate at which vaccination leave should be paid.

Employers are also required to maintain a record of employees’ receipt or accrual and use of vaccination leave for a period of one year. It also provides that employers must make those records available for inspection on request from the labor commissioner’s office.

The Nevada Labor Commissioner is preparing a workplace poster that employers must conspicuously post in the workplace.

Use Mandatory Paid Leave

In addition to creating paid leave for COVID-19 vaccination, SB 209 amends the existing mandatory paid leave law, which applies to private employers with 50 or more employees by adding that such leave is available to employees for “any” use, which may include, but is not limited to:

  • Treatment of a mental or physical illness, injury or health condition;
  • Receiving a medical diagnosis or medical care;
  • Receiving or participating in preventative care;
  • Participating in caregiving; or
  • Addressing other personal needs related to the health of the employee.

While the existing mandatory paid leave law indicates that employees can use mandatory paid leave “without providing a reason,” this amendment specifies that the reasons may include sick leave.

Additional information on Nevada’s mandatory paid sick leave law may be found here.

HR Works, headquartered in Upstate New York, is a human resource management outsourcing and consulting firm serving clients throughout the United States for over thirty years. HR Works provides scalable strategic human resource management and consulting services, including: affirmative action programs; benefits administration outsourcing; HRIS self-service technology; full-time, part-time and interim on-site HR managers; HR audits; legally reviewed employee handbooks and supervisor manuals; talent management and recruiting services; and training of managers and HR professionals.