Advocacy News – Aug. 3, 2022
There’s a lot at stake for Michigan job providers and their employees if the recent court ruling on paid sick leave and minimum wage is left to stand. The Michigan Chamber is working to keep you updated as this issue progresses. We want to help you understand how the court ruling, if allowed to go into effect, could impact your business, policies and procedures and bottom line.
Here’s What Has Happened:
The Michigan Court of Claims judge who ruled that the Michigan Legislature’s “adopt and amend” 2018 strategy to address two previous ballot initiatives increasing the minimum wage and enacting a paid sick leave law was unconstitutional agreed Friday, July 29 to stay that ruling until Feb. 19, 2023.
In ruling the “adopt and amend” strategy unconstitutional, the judge voided the legislature’s amended version of the laws, which have been in effect since March 29, 2019. He ordered that the standards as initially proposed via ballot proposal and adopted be deemed the law. If the decision stands upon appeal and the stay is lifted, it will have a significant impact concerning pay and paid leave practices in Michigan.
The Court of Claims judge has agreed to stay his ruling until Feb. 19, 2023 because “there are justified concerns regarding the ability of employers and the relevant state agencies to immediately accommodate the changes required by [the statute].” The question now is whether the Michigan Court of Appeals hears the appeal and subsequently overturns the decision. We fully anticipate this decision may go all the way to the Michigan Supreme Court.
What Could Change:
While it might be tempting to look at the court’s action and think it probably doesn’t apply to your business, we’d encourage you to take a close look at the details. If left to stand, the Court of Claims ruling could force many Michigan businesses to make significant changes to their paid time off policies (PTO) and procedures — even those who offer generous benefits today. The same is true for wages, although it is worth noting that many employers are currently paying wages above and beyond these rates.
Here’s a summary of what would need to change if the Court of Claims decision is left to stand: