Q: My nanny did not use all of her vacation time in 2017. Does she lose it and start fresh in 2018 or does any of it carry over into the New Year?

A: In California, vacation time, once earned, is considered wages and cannot be forfeited. As a result, it is not permissible to have so-called “use it or lose it” vacation policies whereby any earned but unused vacation time is forfeited at the end of a calendar year.

Instead, in order to ensure that no employee has unlimited amounts of vacation time on the books, employers are permitted to institute a reasonable accrual cap on the amount of vacation time that any employee can accrue. For example, if an employer provides her nanny with two weeks of vacation each year, she can cap her accrual at four weeks of vacation time – if the nanny’s vacation bank reaches the four-week maximum, the nanny will stop accruing time until she takes some vacation, at which point she can begin accruing time again. Any accrued but unused vacation time must be paid at the time of termination of employment for any reason.

If you would like advice on whether your vacation policies are in compliance with the law, or if you want to make sure that all of your personnel policies are up to date for 2018, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Lisa Pierson Weinberger, https://lawofficelpw.com/.