New Jersey employers don’t have to let you vote
You have the right to vote on Tuesday — but in New Jersey, you may not have the right to leave work in order to do so.
There is no federal law that entitles employees to time off in order to cast their vote. And while a number of states do have such laws, New Jersey isn't one of them.
Still, according to Alvaro Hasani, an attorney with labor law firm Fisher Phillips in Murray Hill, "many employers" in New Jersey have voluntarily implemented voting leave policies for their workers, and those policies can generally be found in those companies' handbooks.
"They don't want their employees to have to choose between showing up to work and voting," Hasani told New Jersey 101.5. "They recognize that participating in the democratic process leads to an informed workforce and responsible citizenship."
This leave, Hasani said, generally doesn't permit an employee to miss work for an entire day. An hour or two is allotted for voting either at the beginning or end of a shift, paid or unpaid, he said.
The policies can require that the leave be requested in advance and/or that the employee present a voter receipt as proof that the leave was spent only at the voting booth.
"For those who don't have this type of policy, they should consider that under New Jersey law, it is unlawful to influence, intimidate or otherwise interfere with an employee's right to vote," Hasani added.
Polls are open in New Jersey from 6 a.m. through 8 p.m. Tuesday. Check here to see where you can vote on Election Day.
In New York, employees are entitled to up to two hours of paid leave if they do not have "sufficient" non-working time to vote. The leave must be requested no later than two days before Election Day. Close to 20 states have no specific law requiring time off to vote.
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Contact reporter Dino Flammia at email@example.com.