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DOL wants to keep bosses out of sick-leave checks

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The new federal paid sick-leave requirements for federal contractors could give disability insurers’ absence-management divisions and benefits brokers’ plan administration units a boost.

Related: Paid family leave comes up during presidential debate

The regulations require federal contractors “to use a human resources professional, a leave administrator, or a management official” to verify requests for paid sick leave whenever possible, according to the text of the new U.S. Department of Labor sick-leave regulations.

“The employee’s direct supervisor may not contact the employee’s health care provider unless there is no other appropriate individual who can do so.”

The regulations are set to appear in the Federal Register Friday.

The Labor Department says in the new regulations that the contractor must satisfy Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act privacy requirements when it gets health information about an employee from a health care provider.

The new Labor Department regulations implement an executive order President Obama signed in September 2015.

The regulations will require federal contractors to allow employees working on federal contracts up to seven paid days of sick leave per year, starting with contract solicitations issued on or after Jan. 1, 2017.

Covered workers can use the leave to care for a family member who is ill. A worker can also use leave to care for an “individual related by blood or affinity whose close association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship.”


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