Idaho Leave Laws




Vacation Leave

In Idaho, employers are not required to provide employees with vacation benefits, either paid or unpaid. ID Dept. of Labor: Labor Law Guide. If an employer chooses to provide such benefits, it must comply with the terms of its established policy or employment contract. ID Dept. of Labor: Labor Law Guide.

An employer is required to pay accrued vacation to an employee upon separation from employment if its policy or contract requires it. See Ferguson v. City of Orofino, 131 Idaho 190, 953 P.2d 630 (1998); Jackson v. Minidoka Irrigation Dist., 98 Idaho 330, 563 P.2d 54 (1977).

An employer may cap the amount of vacation leave an employee may accrue over time. See Ferguson v. City of Orofino, 131 Idaho 190, 953 P.2d 630 (1998); Jackson v. Minidoka Irrigation Dist.. 98 Idaho 330, 563 P.2d 54 (1977).



Neither Idaho’s Legislature nor its courts have given any significant guidance regarding other potential vacation policy issues. They are silent regarding whether an employer may:

  • establish a policy or enter into a contract denying employees payment for accrued vacation leave upon separation from employment,
  • deny payment for accrued vacation to an employee upon separation from employment if its policy or contract is silent on the matter,
  • require an employee to comply with specific requirements to qualify for payment of vacation leave upon separation from employment, such as giving two weeks notice or being employed as of a specific date of the year,
  • implement a “use-it-or-lose-it” policy requiring employees to use their leave by a set date or lose it.

Although Idaho’s authorities are silent regarding many vacation policy issues, based on the contractual emphasis Idaho courts have placed on vacation policies, an employer is likely free to implement the vacation policy of its choosing, including policies that deny or limit payment of accrued vacation upon separation from employment. See ID Dept. of Labor: Labor Law Guide; Ferguson v. City of Orofino, 131 Idaho 190, 953 P.2d 630 (1998); Jackson v. Minidoka Irrigation Dist., 98 Idaho 330, 563 P.2d 54 (1977).



Sick Leave

Idaho law does not require employers to provide employees with sick leave benefits, either paid or unpaid. An employer in Idaho may be required to provide an employee unpaid sick leave in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act or other federal laws.



Holiday Leave

Idaho law does not require private employers to provide employees with either paid or unpaid holiday leave. In Idaho, a private employer can require an employee to work holidays. A private employer does not have to pay an employee premium pay, such as 1½ times the regular rate, for working on holidays, unless such time worked qualifies the employee for overtime under standard overtime laws. If an employer chooses to provide either paid or unpaid holiday leave, it must comply with the terms of its established policy or employment contract.

State holidays

Visit our Idaho State Holidays page for a list of holidays recognized and observed by the state of Idaho as well as information regarding state laws governing holiday leave for public employers and employees.



Jury Duty Leave

An employer is not required to pay an employee for responding to a jury summons or serving on a jury.

An employer may not discharge, penalize, threaten, or otherwise coerce an employee who receives and/or responds to a jury summons or who serves on a jury. Idaho Stat. 2-218



Voting Leave

Idaho does not have a law which requires an employer to grant its employees leave, either paid or unpaid, to vote.



Bereavement Leave

Idaho law does not require employers to provide employees bereavement leave or leave to attend funerals. Bereavement leave is leave that is taken by an employee due to the death of another individual, usually a close relative. Employers may choose to provide bereavement leave and may be required to comply with any bereavement policy or practice they maintain.