Georgia Paid Sick Leave Law Does Not Require Paid Sick Leave

No, Georgia, is not State Number Eight to require employers to provide paid sick leave law.  Rather, a new Georgia law regulates the paid sick leave policies of employers that choose to provide paid sick leave.

The law requires an employer with at least 25 employees to allow an employee to use up to five days of earned sick leave to care for an immediate family member. That latter term includes an employee’s “child, spouse, grandchild, grandparent, or parent or any dependents as shown in the employee’s most recent tax return.”


The law states that it does not “require an employer to offer sick leave.” It also states that it does not create a new cause of action against an employer so it is unclear how this law will be enforced.

Other states, including California, Connecticut and Illinois, have enacted similar laws. Georgia’s law is unique in that it exempts any employer “that offers to their employees an employee stock ownership plan.” Of the many laws dealing with paid sick leave, and the many laws exempting certain employers, I do not recall ever seeing this exemption. It is unclear to my why an employer’s providing a benefit that does not deal with paid sick leave would exempt an otherwise covered employer from a paid sick leave law.