Paid Time Off (PTO) in Vermont
Vacation Leave Quota
0 days. Vacation leave is not required.
Employers in Vermont are not mandated by any federal or state law to give their employees paid or unpaid vacation time.
Despite the legal requirement, in the private sector, employees in the US receive ten paid days off after a full year on the job. The amount of PTO available to an employee, however, can vary depending on the industry, location, and the employee’s time with the company.
In case employers decide to provide their employees with vacation leave, whether paid or unpaid, they should adhere to the relevant state law, company policy, or employment agreement.
The accrual system isn’t mandated by law in Vermont, but it’s widely used among many companies.
Employers have the flexibility to create their own vacation accumulation method, which may be in weekly, biweekly, semimonthly, or monthly intervals and is typically determined by the company’s pay cycle.
Vermont law doesn’t specify whether an employer may cap (limit) the vacation leave employees may accrue over time, which means that employers are likely free to implement it.
Roll Over (Carry Over, Brought Forward)
A Use-It-or-Lose-It policy is allowed.
It is allowed to have a Use-It-or-Lose-It policy in which an employee forfeits any remaining vacation time after a certain date, usually at the end of the year. Since there is no specific mention of this policy in Vermont’s state laws, employers are free to adopt it.
Employers generally prefer this policy because some employees use little to no paid time off (PTO), and long-term employees can accumulate a substantial amount of PTO over the years, which can be expensive if paid out upon termination. Moreover, employers encourage their workers to take regular PTO to maintain their physical and mental well-being and work efficiency.
Statutory Provisions Addressing Vacation Pay
Not required by state law; needed only if company policy requires it.
Only if an employer decides to offer paid vacation time and mentions it in an employee handbook, memorandum, or other written document, they are responsible for providing these benefits to their employees.
Payment of Accrued, Unused Vacation on Termination
The state does not require employers to pay this. A company’s policy matters in this issue.
Even though Vermont doesn’t have a law requiring payment of accrued, unused vacation at termination, employers can still be responsible for paying this if there is a company policy that states so.
On the other hand, an employer may legally establish a company policy or contract that denies employees payment for accumulated vacation time upon their departure from the company.
Sick Leave in Vermont
Federal Laws – Leave Quota
Federal law requires 12 weeks of unpaid sick leave.
The standard federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) applies to Vermont (as it is in all the states in the U.S.A). The leave is job-protected.
Employees qualify for FMLA benefits only if:
- they have been employed for at least 12 months (at least 25 hours per week) or 1,250 hours in the previous year
- they work in a location where at least 50 people are employed by the company (in a 75-mile radius)
The FMLA entitles qualified employees to take up to 12 weeks off for:
- personal medical reasons – illness or injury
- to care for a close family member (child, spouse, or parent) suffering from a severe illness
- maternity or paternity leave.
Check out our article on FMLA to learn more.
Vermont State Laws
1 hour of paid sick leave for every 52 hours of work.
All Vermont employers must provide employees with paid sick leave.
Employees will accrue 1 hour of paid sick time for every 52 hours of work. Frontloading is permitted. An employer may cap the sick leave employees accrue at 40 hours a year. From the first day of employment, employees start accumulating paid sick leave. Employers have the option of allowing employees to use their paid sick leave as it accrues or imposing a waiting period of up to 1 year.
An employee who accrues sick leave based on the time they work can roll over up to 40 hours from one year to the next. However, if employers provide employees with a lump sum at the beginning of the year, they are not required to permit them to roll over unused time to the following year.
To qualify for paid sick leave, an employee needs to meet certain requirements, including being over 18 years old, having worked for over 20 weeks within a 12-month period, and having worked an average of at least 18 hours per week over a year.
Maternity, Paternity, FMLA in Vermont
12 weeks of unpaid maternity/paternity leave is provided by FMLA.
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that allows eligible workers to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for family or medical reasons, including maternity or paternity leave. Unless otherwise authorized by the employer, an employee must take this leave continuously. More information about FMLA eligibility can be found above, under the section Sick Leave in Vermont: Federal Laws – Leave Quota.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) is one more federal law that protects pregnant women. According to the PDA, discrimination against pregnant people is prohibited in all areas of employment: hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, fringe benefits, training, leave, and health insurance.
Additional State Laws in Vermont
Employers with more than 10 employees must provide employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in a 12-month period. This parental leave can be used for the birth of a child or adoption. To qualify for this leave, an employee needs to have been employed for a year and have worked an average of 30 hours per week.
Employers with more than 15 employees must provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in 12 months. This family leave is for the employee’s own or a family member’s serious illness. Eligibility for employees is the same as for parental leave.
Short-term Family Leave
Employers with more than 15 employees must provide up to 4 hours of unpaid leave in 30 days, up to a maximum of 24 hours of leave in 12 months.
This short-term family leave may be used:
- to participate in children’s educational activities (such as parent-teacher conferences)
- for routine medical appointments or to respond to a medical emergency of a child, spouse, parent, or parent-in-law
Eligibility for employees is the same as for parental and family leave.
Maternity and paternity leave in Vermont are unpaid.
Bereavement Leave in Vermont (Funeral Leave)
An employer is not required to provide bereavement leave.
Although it is not mandatory by law for an employer to give employees paid or unpaid time off for bereavement or attending a funeral of an immediate family member, most companies in America provide paid bereavement leave for up to 3 days, and some even offer up to 5 or 6 days.
Bereavement leave in Vermont is unpaid.
Jury Duty Leave in Vermont
Employers must provide employees with unpaid time off for jury duty.
Employers are required to provide employees with unpaid, job-protected leave to report to jury selection or jury duty. An employee must show their employer a jury summons as evidence of the requirement.
During the time an employee serves as a juror, they will be regarded as actively working for their employer and will not forfeit any employment benefits such as seniority, fringe benefits, vacation credits, or any other rights and privileges associated with their employment.
An employer may not fire, threaten to fire, penalize, or punish the employee in any way due to their jury service.
The employer pays:
Employers in Vermont are not required to pay employees for jury duty leave, but most employers do it as the court compensation is rather low.
The court pays:
Employees who serve as jurors in Vermont are paid $30.00 a day (though juror pay is only a token amount).
Military Leave in Vermont
All employers in the U.S. must comply with USERRA. Additional state laws.
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) is a federal law that applies to employers of all sizes and types in the U.S. USERRA protects employees called to active duty in the U.S. military, including the U.S. Armed Forces, Reserves, and National Guard. USERRA provides reinstatement rights, protection from discrimination, the right to continue group health care benefits for up to 24 months during their leave, and up to 5 years of unpaid leave for military service (with exceptions to this 5-year limit).
Vermont State Law
In addition to the federal USERRA, Vermont law provides employment protection for members of the U.S. armed forces reserves and the National Guard of Vermont. Employees who belong to one of these two groups are entitled to unpaid leave to engage in training, military drills, or other temporary duties under military authority (there used to be a 15-day limit on this leave, but starting from July 1, 2021, this limit has been removed).
Employees must provide 30 days’ notice before the departure or as soon as possible for active state duty.
When an employee comes back from military leave, they should be put back in their previous job with the same salary, benefits, and seniority they had before, including any seniority they gained during their military leave. They cannot be penalized by losing any benefits like sick leave, vacation, bonuses, promotions, or any other benefits because of their military leave.
Military leave in Vermont is unpaid.
Voting Leave in Vermont
Not required by state law.
Vermont law does not require employers to grant their employees time off to vote on Election Day.
Currently, 29 states provide time off for voting. Vermont is not among them.
Voting leave Vermont is unpaid.
Vermont State Holidays for 2023
A leave for holidays is not required by state law.
In Vermont, an employer can require employees to work on holidays. Even so, most employers offer several paid holidays.
Also, a private company is not required to provide extra pay to an employee for working on holidays (150 percent of the regular rate).
Complete list of official holidays recognized and celebrated by the state of Vermont in 2023:
|Monday, 2 January||New Year’s Day *|
|Monday, 16 January||Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (3rd Monday in January)|
|Monday, 20 February||Presidents’ Day (3rd Monday in February)|
|Tuesday, 07 March||Town Meeting Day **|
|Monday, 29 May||Memorial Day (The Last Monday in May)|
|Tuesday, 4 July||Independence Day|
|Wednesday, 16 August||Bennington Battle Day|
|Monday, 4 September||Labour Day (1st Monday in September)|
|Friday, 10 November||Veteran’s Day|
|Thursday, 23 November||Thanksgiving Day (4th Thursday in November)|
|Monday, 25 December||Christmas Day|
* Holidays that fall on Saturday are observed on the prior Friday; holidays that fall on Sunday are observed on the following Monday.
** If an employee gives at least 7 days’ notice, their employer must allow them to take time off to attend the yearly Town Hall Meeting.
- An Official Vermont Government Website – Department of Labor, https://labor.vermont.gov/
- Vermont Quick and Easy Guide to Labor & Employment Law, https://www.bakerdonelson.com/webfiles/EZGuide/Vermont_LE_Easy_Guide.pdf
- The Vermont Employment Law Guide, https://joinhomebase.com/state-labor-laws/vermont/
- Payroll and Benefits Guide United States – Vermont, https://www.papayaglobal.com/countrypedia/country/united-states-vermont/
- Leave Laws by State and Municipality: 50-State Charts, https://www.xperthr.com/fifty-state-charts/leave-laws-by-state-and-municipality/20973/
Updated: March 14, 2023
Check out our Leave Laws page to learn more about laws in various countries.