As soon as a Hawaii small business owner hires their first employee, it needs to be aware of and in compliance with all federal and state employment laws. If you’ve ever looked, you know that the list of laws is very long and changes happen. It takes effort to keep up with and understand the changes! As a Professional Employer Organization (PEO), it’s our job to help small businesses make sure they are in compliance with all employer laws in order to avoid unnecessary fines and lawsuits. Today we are going to look at Hawaii employee leave laws.
Hawaii Employers: Stay in Compliance with Employee Leave Laws
State disability insurance
Hawaii offers Temporary Disability Insurance (TDI) for eligible Hawaii workers for nonwork-related injury or sickness, including pregnancy. It is a partial wage-replacement program, replacing up to 58% of the employee’s average weekly wages up to the maximum weekly benefit amount set each year by the Disability Compensation Division. Workers are entitled to up to 26 weeks of paid leave under this program.
Any employee who has worked at least 14 weeks of Hawaii employment with at least 20 hours of work per week and earned not less than $400 in the 52 weeks preceding the first day of disability and who meets the eligibility requirements listed below, must be provided with TDI coverage by the employer:
- The injury or illness is not related to or caused by the employee’s job.
- The injury or illness prevents your employee from performing their regular work duties.
- The disability is certified by and your employee is receiving care from a licensed physician or other licensed medical professional, or an accredited practitioner of a faith-healing group.
- The employee is in current employment status, meaning that they were employed immediately before the date they suffered the injury or illness (including periods where the employee was using vacation days or sick leave pay, TDI benefits, or workers’ compensation benefits for temporary total disability). Or if they were separated from their job, the disability occurred within two weeks from their last day of work.
Refer to section 392-5 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes for a list of employees who are excluded from TDI.
In addition to the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) that provides certain employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year, Hawaii has the Hawaii Family Leave Law (HFLL). The HFLL requires all employers with 100 or more employees* to allow eligible employees to take up to four weeks of unpaid, job-protected family leave during any calendar year for the employee’s own or a family member’s illness, or the birth or adoption of a child.
*An employer is considered to have 100 or more employees if they employed one hundred or more employees for each working day during each of twenty or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year.
Who is considered an employee under HFLL?
An employee is defined as a person who performs services for at least six consecutive months (with no break in service outside of leaves of absence) for wages under any contract of hire, written or oral, expressed or implied, with an employer, including a full-time, part-time, temporary, casual, on-call or intermittent worker. There is no requirement for a minimum number of hours worked during this period.
Victims protections leave
Hawaii has the Victims Protections Leave law that requires employers to provide job protected leave to victims of or parents of minor children who are the victims of domestic abuse, sexual assault, or stalking. The number of unpaid victim leave days that must be provided per calendar year depends on the size of the employer.
All employees and job applicants are protected by this law, regardless of how long they have been employed or how many hours they have worked. All employers with one or more employees are required to follow the law, apart from the Federal government.
Feeling a little overwhelmed about employment laws? That’s okay; we’ve got you covered through HR outsourcing! When you partner with Makai HR you can get on with the business you are trying to grow while we take care of your employee needs from payroll to taxes, health insurance/benefits and worker’s compensation. You also gain peace of mind that you are compliant with all of Hawaii’s employer laws. When choosing a PEO to partner with, there are many things to consider including cost, services, and technology solutions.
With the cost of doing business in Hawaii at record highs, we know how important it is to keep labor costs in line with revenue. Our plans are priced competitively and include value-added services like time-in/time-out systems. Our three tiers of PEO service plans are tailored to the size of your business and specific needs. We offer a 100% paperless solution which means that your employees can manage their needs through a computer, tablet, or phone. We can truly improve your employees’ work benefits while freeing you up to run your business.
What are you waiting for? Companies that partner with a PEO benefit from 7-9% faster growth, 10-14% lower employee turnover; and they are 50% less likely to go out of business. Contact us today to get started!