Election Day: Taking Time Off of Work to Vote

By: Christine F. Mayhew, Attorney at Law


What are an employer’s obligations to grant employee requests for leave to vote?

Although no federal legislation exists requiring employers to provide time off to vote, many states have enacted their own legislation.  Some states prevent employers from including lunch periods as part of the voting time off permitted.  However, even these states normally have some provisions alleviating the burden on the employer, such as requiring prior written requests for time off, designating when the time off will be, or stating that if the polls are open two or three hours after the work day ends, then the employer has no obligation to provide time off to vote.

North Carolina has not passed any laws requiring private employers to allow employees time off to vote.  However, as good employers, you want your employees to share community values and be good citizens, of which voting is essential to.  Allowing your employees an opportunity to vote will also help keep morale high.  In addition, employers cannot take actions to improperly influence an employee’s choice in an election.

If you or your company have questions or a legal matter related to employment or labor law issues, please contact Anderson Jones Attorneys by email or phone at (919) 277-2541.