Earned Sick Time Procedures

Effective July 1, 2015, Massachusetts law requires that certain student employees be paid earned sick time for the hours they work.

As Vice President Pohl announced on June 26, 2015, most students are exempt from the Massachusetts Earned Sick Time Law. View the list of exemptions.

Non-exempt students are most likely to be departmentally paid student employees (both graduate and undergraduate) who are not enrolled at least half time for the current semester. These students are eligible to accrue and use sick time. Most often, students in this non-exempt status are those working during the summer months when student employees are not required to be enrolled in order to work at Boston University.

  • Sick time for student employees is accrued on a Fiscal Year basis (July 1 through June 30).
  • Students accrue one (1) hour of earned sick time for every 30 hours (cumulative, not weekly) worked at Boston University and can earn up to 40 hours per year.
  • There is a 90 day waiting period from initial date of hire as an employee at Boston University before a student becomes eligible for paid sick pay.
  • Students may, at any time, request payment of accrued sick time from any department currently employing them.  Accrued sick time may be used by students even during periods of non-accrual, i.e. the academic year.
  • During the academic year international students who choose to use accrued sick time must not exceed 20 hours total for the work week, in combination of sick hours and regular hours to pay.
  • Unused sick time can be carried over from one year to the next; however, no more than 40 hours of sick time may be paid out to an employee in any given year.
  • A weekly report is available to Payroll Coordinators (PC), through Thin Client on the the Business Link to identify sick time available to student employees. If you require information before you are able to access this report, contact Student Payroll directly.  See Earned Sick Time Report Procedures to learn how to access and use the report.

    1. The student notifies the department, according to individual departmental procedure (via phone, email, etc.), that he/she is sick and will not be in to work.
    2. NO SICK TIME SHOULD BE ENTERED ON THE WEEKLY TIME ENTRY
    3. Payroll Coordinators should access the weekly Student Sick Time report in Thin Client on the Business Link. This report identifies any student eligible for sick time and will verify the information outlined below to confirm that a student is entitled to sick time and how many sick hours the student has available.
    4. Once the above information is confirmed, and the number of sick hours to pay has been identified, use the Hire/Rehire option on the Student Employment section of the Business Link to process a One-Time Payment through the SE payroll system as follows:
      • Type of Employment = Departmental
      • Action = New Hire
      • Job Grade = 9
      • Job Code = ST (sick pay)
      • Start Date & End Date = sick pay dates (Start/End dates should cover one week only.  If sick time will cover multiple weeks of pay, a one-time payment should be submitted each week for the sick time to be paid for that particular week.)
      • Number of Hours Worked per Week = number of SICK HOURS to be paid for a specific week. Note: only whole hour increments are accepted in this field.
      • Unit/Department/Object/Source/Mail Code = department paying the sick time
      • One-Time Payment pay amount = sick hours to be paid X hourly rate of the student’s job
      • Input Tax Form = No (not required)
      • Submit
      • Update
      • Use the Review/Approve/Delete function to approve the payment. Before approving this job, verify that the Job Number is S9STXX. This established job number is for sick pay only and should only be used to pay sick time.