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Time Off for Voting Rules in Wisconsin

Filed under Managing the Workplace. Fact checked on May 25, 2012.

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Wisconsin employers must provide employees with time off to vote in accordance with these state rules.

A person in Wisconsin who is entitled to vote in an election may be absent from work while the polls are open.

Paid time off rules: No penalty, other than a deduction for time lost, may be imposed on an employee for taking time off to vote.

The law applies to all employers, including the state and all its political subdivisions.

Advance notice requirements: The employee must notify the employer before election day of the intended absence. The employer may designate the time of day for the absence.

Amount of time off allowed: An employee is permitted time off to vote for a period not to exceed three successive hours.

Employer penalty for violation: Fine of $1,000 and/or jail up to six months.

Special Rules for Election Officials

Employers must grant to each employee who is appointed to serve as an election official a leave of absence for the entire 24-hour period of each election day in which the official serves. The employer can request verification through the municipal clerk. The employee must be paid for scheduled work hours that occur during the time period the employee is serving as an election official. An election official must provide at least seven days notice of application for leave.

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