Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Sick days

My company is going to be making a change soon regarding our sick leave benefit.  Currently we get 7 days per year. Any days left at the end of the year are paid out in a bonus at $100 per day and sick leave is zero'd out and none carried forward.  I'm not much of a sick time user, so the bonus every January is nice, but I've always rather that we were allowed to accrue unused sick time and not get a bonus.  I'd rather build up that time if a big emergency or sickness were to hit. I'd have to say that is about the only negative thing I have about my job and it's benefits.

The company is either going to start allowing sick leave to accrue each year (and thus no more bonus payout of unused time at the end of each year) or put all vacation and sick time into one bucket of "PTO" - to use however we want and I think my boss said we can accrue up to 6 weeks, but after that use it or lose it.  In my case, since I'm at 3 weeks vacation a year plus the 7 sick days, it would be 28 days of PTO each year.

Either way they decide, there is going to be no more sick leave bonus for unused time and we are going to be given the option of taking the $100 per day bonus for whatever we have left up to Sept. 1st and then starting over accruing sick time (or PTO) or we can roll over any sick time still unused as of Sept. 1st into what we will start accruing now (and not get the bonus).

I have about 38 hours through Sept 1st, so that would be a bonus of $475 (the $100 per day is prorated out per hour) or I can roll the 38 hours into the new plan.  I'm still trying to decide what to do. I'm kind of thinking this money would be really nice right now, since I still have some large doctor bills coming in the mail soon and it would really help get those out of the way, since my savings is pretty much depleted.  Since I rarely use sick time (I've probably used less than 10 days total in the 7 years I've worked there, I'm not to concerned with having to start over at zero as of this month. Under our old plan I would have had to do that in January anyway.  But, if we go the PTO route, that is potentially 38 more hours of vacation time available to take! What to do....what to do...


  1. I think it really depends on how much you need this money right now. I would keep the vacation/sick time but we have little kiddos too.

  2. And would it be taxed to the hilt? I always think having time on the books is like $$$ in the bank. I have neither! :-/

  3. Honestly....almost a week of "vacation" would be worth more to me that $475 (minus taxes).

  4. Sixty - actually this isn't taxed at a bonus rate. It's coded on our paycheck as an hourly type pay. All the bonus's we get are taxed to the hilt! Fortunately, when (if?) we get our Christmas bonus's they gross it up and cover the taxes :). When we used to get regular incentive bonus's (20% of our salaries! gone when the economy crashed) they were taxed at 25% bonus rate. But, I always got it back when I filed my taxes.

    I'm thinking if we go the route of all "PTO" I will bank the hours for additional time off. If we go the route of separate sick leave accrual, I will cash in my hours and take the money.

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