The Ins and Outs of the DC Sick Leave Law

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Your Guide to the DC Sick Leave Law

The DC sick leave law may allow you to avoid being sick at work—do you know what it entails?

As an employed resident in the District of Columbia, you have the right to take paid sick leave as long as you meet a few key conditions. In this guide, we will explore how eligibility for and use of sick leave work.

For many people, the hardest part about using sick leave is requesting the time off with their boss. DoNotPay can help—we’ll show you how our Request Sick Leave product .

The Washington DC Sick Leave Law Basics

Sick leave regulations can differ from state to state. More than 33.6 million workers across the country lack any form of regulated sick leave. While there is no federal provision, the government will enact emergency legislation when needed.

Fortunately, there is a region-wide provision for sick leave in DC. DC residents like yourself should learn how the Accrued Safe and Sick Leave Act (ASSLA) works.

What Can I Use DC Paid Sick Leave For?

Whether it’s a bad case of back pain or a simple cold, you should feel confident using your sick leave to rest and recover.

Acceptable uses for your earned sick time include:

  • Treating of a physical or mental illness, injury, or ongoing condition
  • Seeking medical care
  • Caring for a family member
  • Dealing with an incident of domestic violence affecting you or a family member

Who Qualifies as a Family Member?

ASSLA sick leave can be used to help any of the following in relation to an illness or injury:

  • Children
  • Spouses or common-law partners
  • Parents and parents-in-law
  • Grandchildren
  • Grandparents
  • Siblings
  • Care recipients
  • Household members

How Does Washington DC Paid Sick Leave Work?

The amount of time off you can earn under ASSLA depends on the size of your company’s workforce:

Number of EmployeesSick Day AccrualMax Number of Days
Up to 24One hour earned for every 87 workedThree
24–99One hour earned for every 43 workedFive
100+One hour earned for every 37 workedSeven

DC Sick Leave—Dealing With Your Boss

Even though you’re legally entitled to sick leave, your employer may not be enthusiastic about granting it. Take comfort in the fact that your boss cannot force you to work, and they cannot fire you for being absent if you have earned the requisite sick time.

How To Take Sick Leave

Is it time to call in sick? Your company may use a specific phone line or online employee portal to manage time-off requests. Check for a policy to find out how you are expected to take sick leave. You may have to find your replacement for the time you will miss.

If there is no formal process, you can contact your boss in one of two ways:

  1. Phone
  2. Email

DoNotPay Makes It Easy To Ask for Time Off

We know it can be challenging to talk to the boss about time off—allow DoNotPay to ease the process. Our Request Sick Leave product enables you to draft a professional request for time off in minutes.

Here is how it works:

  1. Navigate to the Request Sick Leave product
  2. Input the necessary information about your employment
  3. Specify which days you will be absent

Once you have completed the process, we will issue a formal sick leave request. You can choose to download the letter and give it to your boss, or you can provide their contact info, and we will take care of it for you.

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