Know the Law: Organ and Bone Marrow Donor’s Leave

Sun Aug 04 2019

If you have 15 or more employees, this law applies to you! California law mandates that employers must grant paid leave of absence to an employee who is an organ donor in any one-year period. The time off cannot exceed 30 business days for an organ donor and 5 business days for a bone marrow donor.

Employees are entitled to time off to donate bone marrow or organs. An employer may require that the employee take up to five days of earned but unused sick leave for bone marrow donations and two weeks for organ donations. Employees cannot be discriminated against or held to disciplinary actions for taking time off for organ and bone marrow donations. Employers, after all, cannot deny employees from exercising their right to donate their organ(s) or bone marrow to save another persons’ life.

A physician's certificate is recommended, stating that the employee is donating bone marrow or an organ, and that such donation is medically necessary. To receive a leave of absence, an employee should provide you with a written verification from a qualified physician stating that they are going to undergo an organ or bone marrow donation and that this procedure is required. The law does not account for who the receiver of the donation should to be.

Employers who are required to provide this time off should include such a policy in their employee handbook, so that managers and employees know what and when documentation is needed. Employers with 15 or more employees should include this leave policy in their employee handbook. Mention all the information and documents required in order to be eligible for this leave. That way, employees can refer back to their handbook if they have any questions or concerns regarding this law and regarding their rights.

We can help you make sure your employee handbook is up to date, with the required laws, dependent upon the number of employees you have in your company. An increase in your employee population requires you to update the number of laws that are applicable to your company. We can help update your employee handbook as you hire more employees; thus ensuring that your company complies with all the employment laws.