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Equal Rights Division Newsletter - July 7, 2021

Ending employment and your right to PTO

Wisconsin Wage Payment and Collection law outlines common wage and hour issues including how fringe benefits such as paid time off (PTO) are paid out when employment ends.

The Situation

You have four days of unused vacation time when you accept a new position at different company. Your new employer wants you to start immediately, so you only give your current employer a one-week notice. Two weeks later, when you receive your final paycheck you notice that you weren't paid your vacation time.

Should you contact the ERD?

Ending your employment

The Solution

You should start by contacting your former employer. They may have a policy that states you must give two-weeks notice before leaving in order to be paid any unused vacation/PTO. If there is such a policy, and you didn't give the required two weeks, then you forfeit your unused vacation time. If your former employer doesn't have a policy regarding notice, or if their policy states that unused vacation/PTO is always paid at the end of employment, you may want to contact the Equal Rights Division for further assistance.

Know Your Rights

Wisconsin employers are not required to provide benefits such as vacation/PTO to employees. But if your employer offers vacation/PTO, you have the right to use it or be paid for it in compliance with your employers policy.

Equal Rights Officers are available to answer your wage and hour and employment and housing discrimination questions. We take calls Monday through Friday between the hours of 7:45 AM and 4:30 PM. Madison: (608) 266-6860; Milwaukee: (414) 227-4384.

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