Under Minnesota law, “every employee who is eligible to vote in an election has the right to be absent from work for the time necessary to appear at the employee’s polling place, cast a ballot, and return to work on the day of that election…”  See Minn. Stat. § 204C.04.  The statute provides that an employer may not impose a “penalty or deduction from salary or wages because of the absence.”  An employer or other person “may not directly or indirectly refuse, abridge, or interfere with this right or any other election right of an employee.”

Elections covered by Minnesota’s voting leave law include any “regularly scheduled state primary or general election, an election to fill a vacancy in the office of United States senator or United States representative, or an election to fill a vacancy in the office of state senator or state representative.”

Takeaway:  Because employees are entitled to voting leave in Minnesota, employers should plan ahead for elections, to the extent possible, to minimize the impact of potential business or productivity disruptions.