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Missouri PTO laws: A Full-fledged Guide on Missouri PTO Payout Laws

Understanding Missouri Paid Time Off (PTO) laws is crucial for employers’ legal compliance. If you own a business in Missouri, adhering to these laws prevents legal complications and significantly affects employee satisfaction and retention.

Missouri PTO payout laws include various aspects of time off, including sick, maternity, paternity, bereavement, jury duty, military, and voting leave. For any employer, it is essential to understand these regulations to maintain compliance and foster a positive working environment.

This article explores the specifics of PTO Laws in Missouri, addressing the key questions and concerns that employers may have.

Missouri PTO payout laws do not mandate employers to pay out accrued PTO upon an employee’s termination or resignation. Employers in the state have complete discretion to pay employees for any unused time off on their departure from the company.

However, if an employer in Missouri offers these benefits, they should communicate the established policy or employment contract with the employees. And if such is explicitly in the employer’s policy, they must adhere to their policies.

Does your Missouri state require employers to pay out PTO?

Missouri PTO payout laws do not mandate employers to pay out accrued PTO upon an employee’s termination or resignation. Employers in the state have complete discretion to pay employees for any unused time off on their departure from the company.

However, if an employer in Missouri offers these benefits, they should communicate the established policy or employment contract with the employees. And if such is explicitly in the employer’s policy, they must adhere to their policies.

What are Missouri PTO Laws related to various kinds of leaves?

1. Sick leave

Missouri has no state-specific sick leave law, and employers are not mandated to provide paid sick time to employees. However, all employers must follow federal law, i.e., the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

As there are no local state laws regarding sick leave, employers must pay attention to the criteria for FMLA requirements.

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law allowing eligible employees with job-protected leave for specific family and medical reasons. The eligible employees are the ones who meet the following criteria:

  • Working for an employer with 50 or more employees within a 75-mile radius for at least 20 workweeks in the current or preceding calendar year.
  • Have worked for the current employer for at least 12 months. However, these months don’t have to be consecutive; an employee must have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months. According to the FMLA leave policy, all eligible employees can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during 12 months for specific family or medical reasons.

The qualifying reasons to avail of sick leave under FMLA are:

  • The birth, adoption, or foster care placement of a child.
  • Attending to the medical needs of a spouse, child, or parent with a severe health condition.
  • A serious health condition affecting employees.
  • Any qualifying exigency arising from a spouse, child, or parent’s active duty military service.

2. Maternity and paternity leave

Missouri employees should receive leave for maternity and paternity needs under the FMLA. All employers in the state should provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave per year for specific family or medical reasons. The same rules apply to the eligibility for maternity and paternity leave. Additionally, Missouri does not have particular maternity or paternity leave laws beyond FMLA requirements.

Also, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) is another federal law that prohibits employers from discriminating against pregnant women in all areas of employment. No pregnant employee can be discriminated against regarding hiring, assignments, promotions, firing, etc.

3. Bereavement leave

No Missouri PTO payout laws mandate employers to provide paid or unpaid bereavement leave. Individual company policies typically determine the availability of bereavement leave. Usually, most employers in the state offer two days of bereavement leave to affected employees. However, these bereavement leaves are unpaid and are not required to be paid at the time of termination.

4. Jury duty leave

Employers in Missouri are legally required to grant employees leave for jury duty service. Both full-time and part-time employees are entitled to this leave when they receive a jury duty summons. The duration of jury duty leave can vary, depending on the specific requirements of the jury service.

While Missouri law mandates that employers must grant employees leave for jury duty, it does not require employers to provide compensation for the time an employee spends on jury duty. However, people serving jury duty in Missouri are paid $6 a day and mileage reimbursement for travel.

5. Military leave

In Missouri, military leave regulations are defined under the Revised Statutes of Missouri, Section 105.270. According to this statute, “officers and employees of the state, or any department, agency, county, municipality, school district, or other political subdivision, as well as other public employees who are or may become members of the National Guard or any reserve component of the Armed Forces of the United States, are entitled to leave of absence from their duties.”

Employers are obligated to provide military leave to employees without loss of time, pay, regular leave, or any other rights or benefits for periods of military service. All employers should follow the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), which protects job rights for individuals who voluntarily or involuntarily leave employment positions to undertake military service. It ensures that no individual is:

1. At a disadvantage in their civilian careers because of their military service.

2. Faces any challenges with their re-employed in their civilian jobs upon return from duty.

3. Is met with discrimination against by employers because of past, present, or future military service.

6. Voting leave

Like all other states, Missouri mandates that employers provide voting leave to employees. Employers must grant up to 3 hours of paid leave for employees to vote to participate in the electoral process. All registered voters are covered under the voting leave policy. However, if an employee already has 3 continuous hours of off-duty before the polls, the employer is not obligated to provide additional time off specifically for voting.

Also, employees must request this leave in advance, specifically before the election day. Employers are prohibited from penalizing or discriminating against employees who exercise their right to vote.

What happens to Accrual under Missouri PTO payout laws?

Under Missouri PTO payout laws, no employer is obligated to pay for unused paid time off. The state allows a “use it or lose it” policy, allowing employers to establish their PTO accrual and payout policies.

As an employer in Missouri, you have the flexibility to determine how PTO accrues, whether it carries over from year to year, and if it can be cashed out upon departure. However, all employers must communicate their PTO policies with all their employees through contracts, employee handbooks, and company websites.

What happens to rollover/carry-over time-off under Missouri PTO payout laws?

There are no PTO laws in Missouri on the rollover of unused leaves. The state allows “use it or lose it,” so employers are not mandated to carry over or roll over unused PTO from one year to the next.

All companies have the discretion to establish their policies regarding the carry-over of accrued PTO. Although employees may forfeit any unused PTO, most companies offer carry-over unused time off at the end of the year to attract and retain employees.

All the policies regarding PTO carry-over must be communicated to employees to avoid any misunderstandings or disputes.

What happens to unused vacation time under Missouri PTO payout laws?

Missouri PTO payout laws do not mandate employers to pay out unused vacation time upon an employee’s termination.

Employers can choose whether or not to compensate employees for their accrued but unused vacation time. This flexibility allows you to establish policies that align with their business objectives while remaining compliant with state law.

Employers need to have clearly defined policies regarding unused vacation time to prevent confusion and ensure fair treatment of employees.

Am I liable to pay vacation paid time-off if the employee is laid off?

Employers in Missouri are not liable to pay vacation paid time-off if they lay off employees. As no Missouri PTO payout laws exist, employers are not obligated to pay employees irrespective of how they are laid off.

The decision to provide compensation for unused vacation time when an employee is laid off is at the employer’s discretion. The information should be clearly outlined in the company’s policies. Employers can determine whether they will offer their employees this benefit.

Payment of Accrued, Unused Vacation on Termination

Missouri employers may pay out accrued, unused vacation time to employees upon termination as part of their company policies. Employers are not obligated to have final wages, including vacation on termination.

Employers can legally prohibit employees from getting paid for vacation leave by creating policies they can sign as part of the contract. If you opt to provide this benefit, you should communicate the terms and conditions surrounding the payment of accrued, unused vacation time to avoid any ambiguity or disputes with their employees.

Missouri State Holidays 2024

As an employer in Missouri, you must be aware of the state holidays, as these may impact employee schedules and expectations for time off.

The usual state holidays in Missouri include New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day. Here is a complete Missouri State Holiday 2024 calendar for employers to plan accordingly to accommodate employees’ time-off requests during these holidays and ensure smooth operations.  

Please note that private employers are not mandated to provide holiday leave to employees, and it depends on their company policies. Also, the holidays that fall on a Saturday are observed on Friday, and holidays that fall on a Sunday are observed on Monday.

Date Holiday
January 1 New Year’s Day
3rd Monday in January Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
February 12 Lincoln’s Birthday
3rd Monday in February Washington’s Birthday
May 8 Truman Day
Last Monday in May Memorial Day
June 19 Juneteenth
July 4 Independence Day
1st Monday in September Labor Day
2nd Monday in October Columbus Day
November 11 Veterans Day
4th Thursday in November Thanksgiving
December 25 Christmas Day

How does Truein help with paid time-off management?

Truein is a complete time and attendance management software offering a comprehensive leave management system. It provides a range of features and benefits to streamline the tracking and managing PTO for employees.

Truein automates the leave request workflow, allowing employees to submit leave requests using their smart phone by eliminating the need for paper forms or manual processes. It is easy for employees to request time off. Managers can directly review and approve or deny leave requests digitally. 

Furthermore, Truein tracks PTO accruals based on your company’s policies, ensuring employees accrue leave accurately and by your specific rules. This helps prevent errors and ensures employees know their available PTO balances.

With its library of over 70 customizable policy templates, Truein can be configured to align with your company’s unique PTO policies. You can customize policies based on accrual rates, carry-over rules, or any other specific requirements; it can accommodate all your business needs. 

It allows employees to request daily or hourly leave, enabling them to manage their PTO better. Truein gives employees access to their current PTO balances in real time, allowing them to make informed decisions when requesting time off. This transparency improves employee satisfaction and reduces the risk of overusing or misunderstanding their available PTO.

Truein also has robust reporting and analytics capabilities, allowing HR managers to track trends in leave usage, identify potential issues, and make data-driven decisions related to PTO policies and resource allocation.

With Truein’s mobile and web access, employers and employees can manage paid time off efficiently, ensuring compliance with leave laws. Its policy customization features provide adequate leave management practices within the organization.


This guide on Missouri PTO payout laws provides you with a one-stop reference resource as an employer to ensure compliance with state regulations while providing employees with valuable time-off benefits.

PTO laws in Missouri provide far more flexibility to employers to set their company policies regarding accrual, carry-over, and payout of PTO. By staying informed about the laws and policies about various types of leave and their associated regulations, you can ensure compliance and fairness in the workplace.

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