Effective February 11, 2018, Maryland’s Healthy Working Families Act requires Maryland employers to provide leave time to employees for illness or other specified personal obligations. (2017 HB 1/SB 230; MD Labor and Employment Code Sec. 3–1301).
Covered employers. The Act applies to all public and private Maryland employers.
Whether leave must be provided on a paid basis depends on the size of the employer.
• Employers with 15 or more employees must provide leave on a paid basis.
• Employers with 14 or fewer employees may provide leave on an unpaid basis.
Covered employees—exceptions. The Act excludes several categories of workers from the definition of “employee.”
These exceptions, which are not entitled to leave, include:
• Independent contractors;
• Certain real estate professionals under MD Labor and Employment Code 9–222;
• Minor workers (those under the age of 18 before the beginning of the leave year);
• Certain agricultural workers;
• Certain temporary workers (those employed by a temporary services agency when the agency does not have day-to-day control over the work assignments and supervision of the individual); and
• Workers directly employed by an employment agency to provide part-time or temporary services to another person.
The Act also does not apply to:
• Workers who regularly work less than 12 hours a week for an employer;
• Construction workers who are covered by a bona fide collective bargaining agreement in which the requirements of the law are expressly waived in clear and unambiguous terms; or
• Certain as-needed service providers in health or human services industries who are not guaranteed work and who may accept or reject offered shifts.