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Do You Get Paid for
Vacation Days if You Quit?

If you have accrued vacation days that you haven’t used when you quit your job, you may be entitled to compensation for those days. Most U.S. states have laws requiring employers to pay out an employee’s unused vacation time when their working relationship comes to an end.
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

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Are Vacation Days Paid in the United States?

Paid vacation leave is typically given to workers after specific service requirements are met (i.e. 90 days, 6 months, 12 months). The number of annual vacation days granted may vary based on seniority. In 2021, over 30% of private industry workers received 10 to 14 days of paid vacation after 1 year of service, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). After a decade of service, 33% of private industry employees were granted from 15 to 19 days of paid vacation.

What is Earned Vacation?

Earned Vacation is defined as the salary and wages which an employee is entitled to receive for any vacation time off that is earned in accordance with the employer’s policies, but which is unused by the employee for a given time period, together with all employment taxes with respect thereto.

What is PTO?

Paid time off, or PTO provides employees with a pool of bankable hours that can be used for any purpose. Also known as personal time off, PTO generally describes any period that an employee is paid while taking leave from work.

How is Vacation Pay Calculated?

Add the number of hours earned in a given accounting period. Subtract the number of vacation hours used during that period. Multiply the ending number of accrued vacation hours by the employee's hourly wage to get the correct accrual that should be on the company's books.

Also Read: What are the Rules for Reporting Time Pay?

What is the Average Paid Vacation Days Per Year?

The average employee in the U.S. gets 11 days of paid vacation per year, according to Forbes. In the private sector, the average number of paid vacation days after 5 years of service increases to 15 days. After 10 years of service, it rises again to 17 days.

What is the Minimum Paid Vacation Days?

While U.S. workers are entitled to up to 12 weeks of unpaid vacation via the federal Family and Medical Leave Act, there is no federal law regulating paid vacation minimums. This means that it's up to state laws and individual businesses to regulate them.

What if I Quit Without Notice?

Despite standards of work etiquette, no laws require employees to give any notice before quitting. While breached contracts may affect final compensation or trigger a paga lawsuit, there aren't any legal protections for employers when employees decide to leave.

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