Diane DeGiacomo and Jared Kelly presented “The Season of Changing Leaves” to the Human Resources Association of Berkshire County on March 18, 2015 at the Berkshire Hills Country Club.
The presentation centered around significant changes in employment law in the last 12 months, especially in the area of leave policies. Employers must now provide five sick days a year to employees, and for many employers, the leave must be paid. Massachusetts has now expanded the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act to encompass men as well as women. And the Act Relative to Domestic Violence requires employers of 50 or more to provide up to 15 days of unpaid leave a year for employees to address issues of domestic violence.
How these new leave requirements interact with one another, as well as existing required leaves, such as the Family Medical Leave Act, remains an open question. What is clear is employers must review and modify existing leave policies to comply with the ever changing employment laws in Massachusetts and on the federal level.