Nova Scotia Leave Laws
Paid federal statutory holidays
- New Year’s Day – 1st January
- Good Friday – 2 days before Easter Sunday
- Victoria Day – Monday preceding May 25th
- Canada Day – 1st July
- Labour Day – first Monday of September
- Thanksgiving Day – second Monday of October
- Remembrance Day – 11th November
- Christmas Day – 25th December
- Boxing Day – 26th December
Provincial Paid holidays
Nova Scotia has additional holidays:
- Natal Day – 1st Monday of August. It is not a holiday but commonly a day off.
- Nova Scotia Heritage Day/Family Day – 3rd Monday of February
Victoria Day, Thanksgiving, Boxing Day, and Remembrance Day are not statutory holidays.
To be eligible to work, the employee must have:
- Worked at least 15 of the 30 calendar days prior to the holiday
- Worked the scheduled shift before and after the holiday
Eligible Pay Rate and/or Entitlement:
- If the holiday falls on a regular workday: Stat pay + 1.5 times regular rate OR regular pay for hours worked + one day paid leave
- If the holiday falls on a non-working day: Employee will get the next working day off with pay OR one paid day off of the employee’s choosing.
In Nova Scotia employees are entitled to 2 consecutive weeks or 1 day for each month worked of vacation leave for the first eight years of employment and 3 consecutive weeks or 1.25 days for each month worked of leave after eight years of employment.
Employees are entitled to vacation pay of 4% of gross wages for the first eight years of employment and 6 % of gross wages after eight years of employment.
The rollover policy
- Statutory Provisions Addressing Vacation Pay
Vacation is considered earned wages.
- Use-It-or-Lose-It Policy
In Canada is illegal to use the policy.
- Payment of Accrued Vacation upon Termination
The employee’s earnings must be paid upon termination of employment. Employers must pay within 10 days after the employment terminates.
- Vacation and PTO
Vacation pay is calculated as a percentage of the gross wages an employee earns during the “year of employment”.
- Personal leave and Family leave – Sick Leave
Employees are entitled to up to 3 days of unpaid leave per year due to the sickness of a child, parent, family member, or for medical, dental or other similar appointments during working hours.
Maternity and Parental Leave
An eligible employee who has been employed for at least one year is entitled to up to 16 weeks of job-protected unpaid leave. Leave may not begin sooner than the sixteen weeks preceding the expected date of delivery and not later than the date of delivery. Employees are required to provide employers with written notice and if requested with a medical certificate.
Employees who have been employed for at least one year are entitled to up to 77 weeks of unpaid leave. The rule applies to both biological and adoptive parents. Employees must give written notice to an employer specifying the date that the employee will begin the leave and the date that the employee will return to work. Employees can take parental leave immediately after the maternity leave, without returning to work. Combined maternity and parental leave must not exceed 77 weeks. A written notice is required.
Jury Duty Leave
All employers must allow employees to take unpaid leave in order to attend court as jurors.
- Employers are required to provide employees with up to 5 consecutive working days of unpaid leave upon the death of a family member. Crime-related Child Death or Disappearance LeaveEmployees who have been employed for at least 3 months are entitled to up to 52 weeks of unpaid leave taken within the 53-weeks period due to a disappearance of a child and up to 104 weeks of unpaid leave taken within the 105-weeks period due to death of a child as a result of a crime. Leaves may be taken in a single period.
Compassionate Care Leave, Leave Related to Critical Illness and Leave for Victims of Domestic Violence
Compassionate Care Leave
Employees who have worked for at least 3 months are entitled to up to 28 weeks within 52- weeks period of unpaid leave to provide care and support for a seriously ill family member with a significant risk of dying within 26-weeks. A medical certificate is required.
Leave Related to Critical Illness
Eligible employees are entitled to up to 37 weeks of unpaid leave within a 52-weeks period to care and support the critically ill children. This does not apply to a step-child or foster child. An employee must provide a medical certificate. Leave can be taken in periods no shorter than a week. In the case of 2 or more critically ill children, leave must not exceed 52 weeks.
Eligible employees are entitled to up to 16 weeks of unpaid leave within a 52-weeks period to provide care and support for a critically ill adult. An employee must provide a medical certificate. Leave can be taken in periods no shorter than a week. In the case of 2 or more critically ill adults, leave must not exceed 52 weeks.
Leave for Victims of Domestic Violence
An employee who has been employed by an employer for a period of at least three months is entitled an unpaid leave of absence if the employee or a child of the employee experiences domestic violence and the leave may be taken for the following reasons:
- to seek medical attention for the employee or the child of the employee for a physical or psychological injury or disability caused by domestic violence;
- to obtain services for the employee or the child of the employee from a victim services organization, an employee of a transition house or a person employed by the Department of Justice, a municipal police department or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who provides victim services;
- to obtain psychological or other counseling from a qualified person for the employee or the child of the employee;
- to relocate temporarily or permanently;
- to seek legal or law enforcement assistance, including preparing for or participating in any civil or criminal legal proceeding related to or resulting from the domestic violence; or
- for a purpose prescribed by the regulations.
Employees are entitled to take up to 10 days of unpaid leave per year. Leave can be taken intermittently or in one period of up to 16 weeks of unpaid leave taken in one period of time.
An employee who has been employed for at least one year and is a member of The Canadian Forces is entitled to unpaid leave in order to participate in active duty or training. Written notice is required and a certificate from an official with the Reserves, if requested by the employer.