Voting Time Off

Polling places throughout the United States are generally open for extended hours on election day, but some employee schedules may make it difficult for employees to vote.  In instances where a polling location is not open at least 2 to 3 hours before or after an employee’s scheduled shift, a department should provide the employee with sufficient time, generally up to two hours of paid time off for voting.  The two hours is considered paid time off, will not be deducted from the employee’s leave balances and will not be used to calculate overtime and other premium pay.

Employees should provide reasonable notice to their supervisor if they will need to be absent from their regularly scheduled work shift to vote.  The employee should provide proof of the hours of operation of their polling location before any paid time off is approved. 

An increasing number of jurisdictions offer a period prior to the day of the election during which voters may cast ballots early.  Some employees, such as those on alternative work schedules, may find it convenient to vote during these early voting periods.