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Unused Vacation pay

I am an employer in Florida. One of my employee get two weeks of vacation each year. With the start of 2013, the employee has two weeks of vacation. The employee now quits and start working for someone else. The employee is now demanding that she be given the two weeks pay for 2013. She says she earned those vacations working for full year in 2012. Living in Florida, am i eligible to give her payments for those two weeks of vacation?

The State of Florida does not have any laws requiring employers to provide employees with vacation benefits, either paid or unpaid. Florida’s Legislature and its courts are silent regarding any obligation an employer may have on vacation leave, including whether an employer must pay an employee accrued vacation leave upon separation from employment. Due to the silence of Florida authorities on vacation, employers are free to establish the vacation leave policy of their choosing. However an employer must comply with the terms of a valid employment contract or vacation policy.

If you have a vacation policy or contract with that employee that states “upon termination you will be paid for all accrued, unused vacation” then you need to follow that contract or policy.

Typically however, when an employer grants two weeks of vacation in January, based on years of service the prior year, and an employee terminates, the employee should only receive a pro-rated portion of the vacation. For example, the employee works January, February and March they would only be entitled to receive ¼ of the 2013 vacation or 2.5 days. You should revise any policy to ensure that vacation is not given for time not worked.

Basically, if you do not have a policy or contract with this employee, you do not have to pay the vacation time out. However, you can use the above example and pay 2.5 days, but you will need to provide a clean explanation. Either way you handle the situation it will probably be covered under Florida’s state laws.

This entry was posted on Sunday, March 17th, 2013 at 12:32 pm and is filed under
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