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North Dakota Leave Laws


No federal or state law requires employers to provide paid or unpaid vacation time for their employees. However, if employers choose to offer a vacation leave, paid or unpaid, to their employees it must comply with applicable state law or employment contract. 

The rollover policy

  • Statutory Provisions Addressing Vacation Pay

Employers may provide paid time off, which is considered wages and includes:

Annual leave, earned time off, personal days.

Any other provisions intended to provide compensation as a vacation.

(N.D. Admin. Code 46-02-07-02(12).)

  • Use-It-or-Lose-It Policy

Not prohibited, if employees:

Are given a reasonable opportunity to take the vacation.

Have notice of the provision.

(N.D. Admin. Code 46-02-07-02(12).)

  • Payment of Accrued Vacation on Termination

An employer must pay a terminating employee for earned paid time off at the regular rate of pay earned by the employee before separation. An employment policy or agreement cannot include forfeiture of earned paid time off at separation. (N.D. Admin. Code 46-02-07-02(12).)

However, if an employee voluntarily separates from employment, a private employer may withhold payment for accrued paid time off if:

The employer gave the employee written notice at the time of hiring of the limitation on payment of accrued paid time off.

The employee has been employed for less than one year.

The employee gave less than five days’ written or verbal notice.

(N.D. Cent. Code § 34-14-09.2.)


No federal or state law in North Dakota requires employers to pay out an employee’s accrued vacation, sick leave, or other paid time off (PTO) at the termination of employment.

Maternity, Paternity, FMLA

The North Dakota Human Rights Act applies to all employers and protects employees from employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, physical or mental disability.

Pregnancy must be treated the same way as any other temporary disability. This includes the commencement and duration of a leave of absence, the availability of extensions, the accrual of seniority and other benefits while on leave, and job reinstatement.

Jury Duty Leave

An employer is not required to pay an employee for time spent responding to a jury summons or serving on a jury. An employer may not discharge, lay off, penalize, threaten, or otherwise coerce an employee, because the employee receives and/or responds to a summons, serves as a juror, or attends court for jury service.

Bereavement Leave

No federal or state law require an employer to provide the employee with paid or unpaid bereavement leave or with any time off to organize or attend a close family member’s funeral.

Voting Leave

North Dakota law “encourages” employers to establish a program to allow employees to be absent for the purpose of voting if their work schedules conflicts with voting during the time polls are open. This is voluntary for employers. There is no guaranteed right to be absent.

Military Leave

North Carolina law provides the following job protections for military members, in addition to Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act:

  • Reemployment rights for members of the North Carolina National Guard (or of another state) who are honorably discharged
  • Discrimination protections for members of the National Guard
  • Leave for members of the U.S. military for emergency military duty