Preparing for Election Day 2018 – Georgia’s Voting Leave Law

Voting Leave

Georgia’s voting leave law, located at Ga. Code Ann. § 21-2-404, applies to all employees. Pursuant to the law, each employee in the state, upon reasonable notice to his or her employer, must be permitted to take any necessary time off from employment to vote in any municipal, county, state, or federal political party primary or election for which the employee is qualified and registered to vote on the day on which such primary or election is held. However, voting time off may not exceed two hours. If the employee’s work hours begin at least two hours after the opening of the polls or end at least two hours prior to the closing of the polls, the time off for voting will not be available. Employers may also specify the hours during which the employee may be absent for voting.

Public Employers

According to Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. r. 478-1-14, the state encourages employees to exercise their privileges and duties as citizens, including the right to vote. Employees who do not have sufficient time outside their normal work schedules to vote can request time off to vote and the state agency may specify the hours during which an employee may be absent in order to vote. Employees who need time off from work to vote in local, state, or national general elections or primaries are eligible for up to two hours of paid leave at the beginning or end of their regular workday. Employees who are scheduled to begin work at least two hours after the polls open or end work at least two hours before the polls close are not eligible for voting leave. Additionally, as with any foreseeable absence, employees should request and obtain approval from their supervisor in advance of taking time off to vote, and should schedule the time off in a manner that minimally disrupts normal agency operations. Read more: Georgia General Assembly Website

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