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About New Mexico Paid Sick Leave (Healthy Workplaces Act)

 

The Healthy Workplaces Act of 2021 is a law requiring all private employers in New Mexico to allow employees to accrue and use a benefit called earned sick leave. The law takes effect on July 1, 2022. The Act lets employees earn and use paid sick leave. Employees may use this leave for various reasons listed in the Act, like the employee’s or their qualifying family member's illness or injury, or to deal with certain legal and family issues. Employers who do not honor an employee’s rights to sick leave face potential civil liability. The Act authorizes the Labor Relations Division (LRD) of the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions (DWS) to investigate violations and enforce the Healthy Workplaces Act.

Employers with paid-time-off policies that are more generous than the minimum accrual and usage limits specified in Act are compliant with the Act if employees may use the leave for the same purposes and under the same terms and conditions specified in the Act.

The earned sick leave required by the Act is in addition to any paid time off provided by an employer pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement unless employees may use the paid time off for the same purposes and under the same terms and conditions specified in the Act.

Healthy Workplaces Act Final Rules 

Healthy Workplaces State Statute, NMSA Chapter 50, Article 17 - PDF

 

 

Frequently Asked Paid Sick Leave Questions

FAQs all-in-one - PDF

Not necessarily. Not only must you provide at least the same accrual rate as the Act, but you must also ensure the hours accrued can be used at a minimum for the same purposes and under the same terms and conditions as provided for by the Act. You must track leave usage and be able to provide documentation to establish compliance if an employee files a complaint against you. Also, the Division will require employers to honor their own policies and we will enforce those more generous provisions. Employers in violation could face assessments of improperly denied leave pay, statutory damages, and interest.

The Healthy Workplaces Act does not apply to any work done on Tribal Land, including Trust Land, and the Division has no authority to enforce its laws for work performed there. This is true whether the employer is owned or operated by a tribe or tribal member or a non-tribal member. Any business owned or operated by a tribe or tribal member is exempt from the requirements of the Act, even if work is performed off tribal land. 

No. The Division recommends employers make it clear to employees that one bank of PTO that can be used for any reason means that employees will not have paid sick leave available if they exhaust their PTO balance. However, remember that the PTO must be subject to the same usage, accrual, carryover and other requirements of the Act. 

It depends. Travel during the work day from job site to job site is generally compensable work time and PSL will accrue, but normal travel from home to work or work to home is not work time and PSL will not accrue. The “portal-to-portal” exclusion under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) does not apply in New Mexico, so if employees are required to meet at a central location to be transported to the job site, that travel time would be considered compensable time and PSL would accrue. 

Yes. Part-time, temporary, and seasonal employees must also accrue paid sick leave at a minimum of 1 hour per 30 hours worked. This is calculated on a rolling basis, so a part-time employee who works 20 hours each week will accrue 0.67 hours of paid sick per week. By the end of the third week, that employee will have a paid sick leave balance of 2 hours.

No. Employees only accrue a minimum of 1 hour paid sick leave for every 30 hours actually worked. However, an employee who is required to remain on the employer’s premises or so close thereto that he cannot use the time effectively for his own purposes is working while “on call.” This would be compensable time and therefore PSL would accrue. On the other hand, an employee who is not required to remain at the employer’s premises but is merely required to leave word at his home or with company officials where he may be reached is not working while on call. If the employee is fully able to use the time for his or her own purposes while on call, then PSL would not accrue.   

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Contact Labor Relations Division

Albuquerque Map
Albuquerque
401 Broadway Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87102
Phone: 505-841-4400
Fax: 505-841-4424
Las Cruces Map
Las Cruces
226 South Alameda Blvd
Las Cruces NM 88005
Phone: 575-524-6195
Fax: 575-524-6194

Resources, Guides, and Training

 
Paid Sick Leave Poster
 
Resources
 
Healthy Workplaces Act Complaint Form

This form is for complaints alleging violations of the accrued sick leave requirements under the New Mexico Healthy Workplaces Act

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