UPDATES TO NEVADA’S DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS LEAVE
As employers in Nevada know under Nevada’s domestic victims leave law, employees who are either victims of domestic violence or family/household members of a victim of domestic violence are entitled to leave under certain conditions. The Nevada Legislature has recently passed Assembly Bill 163 (AB163), which provides certain employment protections for victims of sexual assault including revising Nevada’s current domestic violence victim’s leave law to include victims of sexual assault.
The provisions of Nevada’s domestic violence victims leave law will largely remain the same, the new law just broadens which individuals can take leave under the law.
In order to be eligible to take leave, employees must be employed for ninety (90) days, and they must be a victim of domestic violence or sexual assault, or a family/household member of a person who is a victim of domestic violence or sexual assault. This leave is only available to victims, never the alleged perpetrator. For purposes of this law, domestic violence has the same definition as it does in NRS 33.018, and sexual assault is defined the same as it is in NRS 200.366.
The amount of leave available remains the same. Employees may use up to one hundred and sixty (160) hours in one twelve-month period and must be used within twelve (12) immediately following the date of the incidence of domestic violence or sexual assault. The leave can be paid or unpaid and may be used intermittently by the employee.
The reasons that an employee may take leave are still the following: for the diagnosis, care, or treatment of a health condition related to an act of domestic violence or sexual assault; to participate in court proceedings related to an act of domestic violence or sexual assault; to obtain counseling or assistance related to an act of domestic violence or sexual assault; and, to establish a safety plan, including, without limitation, and action to increase the safety of the employee or their family/household member from future acts of domestic violence or sexual assault.
Employers can require an employee to provide notice in order to take leave related to domestic violence or sexual assault. While an employee is not likely to be able provide advanced notice of the initial need to take leave for domestic violence or sexual assault, an employer may require an employee to provide forty-eight (48) hours advanced notice of the need to use additional leave. An employer can request that an employee provide documentation which supports their need for leave as well. This documentation can include, but is not limited to, a police report, applications for a restraining order, affidavit from an organization that provides services to victims of domestic violence or sexual assault, or documentation from a physician.
In addition to updating Nevada’s domestic violence victims leave law, AB163 also provide additional protections to victims of sexual assault, including preventing the Department of Employment, Training, and Rehabilitation (DETR) from denying unemployment benefits under certain circumstances for victims of sexual assault; requiring employers to provide reasonable accommodations under certain circumstances for victims of sexual assault; and preventing an employer from taking certain actions against an employee for reasons related to sexual assault.
Governor Lombardo signed AB163 into law on June 5th; however, the law do not go into effect until January 1, 2024. That means employers will have time to implement this change. Employers should use that time to review their policies and update them to ensure they include leave for victims of sexual assault prior to January 1st.
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