{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "How do sick days work? Just realized that 1/3 of my “PTO” is actually sick days (and it’s not generous and you don’t get paid out when you leave). I’m very lucky to not get sick but does that mean in order to use some I’ll have to spontaneously say I’m ill with little advanced notice? Seems like a policy which rewards people for leaving their team in a lurch.", "post_id": "600cb05b390773002092b3f1", "reply_count": 8, "vote_count": 1, "bowl_id": "5976222cab932800101a9ca4", "bowl_name": "Women in Advertising" }

How do sick days work? Just realized that 1/3 of my “PTO” is actually sick days (and it’s not generous and you don’t get paid out when you leave). I’m very lucky to not get sick but does that mean in order to use some I’ll have to spontaneously say I’m ill with little advanced notice? Seems like a policy which rewards people for leaving their team in a lurch.

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I think OP’s question is: if I don’t get sick very often, am I automatically getting less PTO than my peers, or (in order to use all of my PTO) am I going to have to do morning-of call-outs and pretend to be sick (which is less than ideal – if OP had a long weekend planned, I’m sure her team would rather know in advance...). From a management perspective, I have all of our PTO in the same pool. Whether you’re sick in bed or laying on the beach it makes no difference to me and I don’t feel the need to differentiate between a sick leave allocation and a personal leave allocation – and I don’t want to foster a culture of lying about leave in order to use up sick leave. We do expect people to request personal leave (like for a weeklong vacation) at least two weeks in advance, so that we can make sure their responsibilities / tasks all have coverage. (But if it’s a last minute thing and isn’t going to cause any issues, we’re pretty chill ago that too...) For sick leave, we expect that it’s going to be last minute (since you don’t know when you’re going to be sick) and “I’m stressed out and need a mental health day to decompress” is a perfectly acceptable reason to call out sick, from our perspective. Like someone else noted, there might be a legal reason that 40 hours of your PTO is listed specifically as sick leave, and that in actual practice at the company, it’s not as formal / strict. The best thing to do is to have a chat with HR and just ask them for what happens in practice (and not on paper).

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This is it exactly, thank you!

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You can also use sick time for doctor appts, dentist appts, family appts, etc. and sick time should be used if you are not feeling well, even if WFH. If the team is in a lurch if someone gets sick, there are bigger issues at play.

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No one will question a migraine and sounds/screens make mine worse :). “Sorry, I’ve had a migraine since last night and I still have it. Need to take a day so it can run it’s course and I’ll be back tomorrow.” I do take migraine medicine and sometimes they are gnarly.

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Depending on what state you live in, your company is required to give you sick time. In NJ it’s 40 hours. HR let us know that it is all the same pool of PTO and that they just have to show that they are allocating the 40 sick hours, we can use any of the hours for anything. Not sure if that holds for all agencies though.

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Ok thanks! I also have the 40 hrs guessing also mandated by state law, except that I won’t get any of that paid out when I leave 😬.

Sick days are meant for what it sounds like: time off for when you are sick (or need to go to the Dr, dentist, etc). Yes, it is acceptable to use those hours spur of the moment, as sickness usually is a spur of the moment thing. You really shouldn't work when sick, even with WFH. Take sick time.

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