Can an employer choose when to give you the money you earned for PTO?

I earned paid time off and decided to use it for vacation with the approval of my employer. However, I didn't receive that money with the paycheck right before I went on vacation, and when I asked if it would be added onto the next paycheck (done a few days before I return) I was told that I won't be receiving it until a week after I come back from vacation. Other employees who have used the PTO for vacation, received their money before going on vacation, having it added on to whatever they earned for the week.

Update: The PTO policy in the handbook clearly states that it can be used for sick-leave, personal emergencies, holidays not recognized by the company, and vacation. It has not been changed in any way.

1 answer  |  asked Dec 27, 2015 2:59 PM [EST]  |  applies to New York

Answers (1)

V Jonas Urba
New York's Department of Labor posts answers to frequently asked questions. Do you have a written contract or policy which promises such pay? Even if you do, employers often give themselves the power to alter or amend such policies from time to time. It's not unusual to see carve-outs when employees quit or resign. Have you given your employer any reason to suspect that might be you?

Q: Must an employer pay workers for holidays, sick time and/or vacations?

A: Under the New York State Labor Law, payment for time not actually worked is not required unless the employer has established a policy to grant such pay. Holidays, sick time and/or vacations fall under 'time not worked.' When an employer does decide to create a benefit policy, that employer is free to impose any conditions they choose. Fringe benefits may include:
• Reimbursement of expenses or tuition
• Health coverage
• Payment for - Sick time - Vacation - Personal leave - Holidays

posted by V Jonas Urba  |  Dec 27, 2015 3:32 PM [EST]

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