Maine Leave Laws




Vacation Leave

In Maine, employers are not required to provide employees with vacation benefits, either paid or unpaid. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs. If an employer chooses to provide such benefits, it must comply with the terms of its established policy or employment contract. See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).

An employer may lawfully establish a policy or enter into a contract denying employees payment for accrued vacation leave upon separation from employment. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs; See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).



An employer may also lawfully establish a policy or enter into a contract disqualifying employees from payment of accrued vacation upon separation from employment if they fail to comply with specific requirements, such as giving two weeks notice or being employed as of a specific date of the year. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs; See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).

An employer is required to pay accrued vacation to an employee upon separation from employment if its policy or contract requires it. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs; See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).

An employer is not required to pay accrued vacation leave upon separation from employment if the employer’s established policy or employment contract is silent on the matter. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs; See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).

An employer may cap the amount of vacation leave an employee may accrue over time. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs; See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).

An employer may implement a “use-it-or-lose-it” policy requiring employees to use their leave by a set date or lose it. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs; See Rowell v. Jones & Vining, Inc., 524 A.2d 1208 (1987).



Sick Leave

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



Holiday Leave

Maine law does not require private employers to provide employees with either paid or unpaid holiday leave. Maine Dept. of Labor FAQs In Maine, 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 Maine State Holidays page for a list of holidays recognized and observed by the state of Maine 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, deny health insurance coverage to, or otherwise coerce an employee who receives and/or responds to a jury summons or who serves on a jury.

Maine Stat. 14:1218



Voting Leave

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



Bereavement Leave

Maine 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.