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Litigation Battle Over Minneapolis Sick Leave Ordinance

As explained in an earlier blog, Minneapolis passed a controversial paid sick leave ordinance in the spring. The ordinance affects all private employers with one or more employees working at least 80 hours in a calendar year in Minneapolis – which equates to 1.5 hours per week. In response, the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce commenced litigation in Hennepin County District Court, seeking injunctive relief to halt the ordinance, which is to become effective July 1, 2017.

On Dec. 8, the court did not rule on the chamber’s motion, but did question the scope of the ordinance. The court inquired as to whether the threshold requirement of 80 hours per year or 1.5 hours per week extended to any company – including companies outside of Minnesota that may have employees who regularly visit Minneapolis for business. Given the court’s questions regarding the scope of the ordinance, the parties were ordered to submit briefs prior to Christmas with their respective arguments about the ordinance’s effect on companies based outside of Minnesota. The ordinance requires companies to pay one  hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked, with an accrual cap of 48 hours paid sick time in a calendar year. The eligibility requirement for an employee to receive this paid sick time is non-existent, as it applies to full-time, part-time and temporary employees. The ordinance also imposes a number of notice and recordkeeping requirements and penalties for violation of the ordinance. We will watch for further action in the Hennepin County District Court and keep you apprised.


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