As an exempt employee with an administrative definition, is sick leave deducted on 1/2 day basis, e.g., going home sick mid-day. It seems it would be standard policy to charge that time against sick leave. Is that standard?
Also as an exempt, what allowances are in place for things such as doctor’s appts or other personal appts, if you have used your personal leave days and come in late due to an appt, can that time legally be deducted from any remaining vacation benefit? If there’s isn;t any benefit days left, what then?
There are two issues going on here. The first is legal and the second is policy. We’ll deal with the legal first, although I am not a lawyer and none of this should be taken as legal advice. Go get your own brother to go to law school if you want free legal advice.
Exempt employees are paid to do the job, not by the hour. Therefore, they cannot deduct money from your paycheck if you are late, take a long lunch, go to a doctor’s appointment or what have you. If you work at all, you get paid.
Now, the policy point. If you come in late, take a long lunch, go to a doctor’s appointment or what have you, they still have to pay you, but they can fire you, demote you, discipline you or make your life miserable. (Or all of the above!)
In my experience, most companies allow (or require) exempt employees to take off blocks of time in half or full days. The can say, “If you have a doctor’s appointment, you need to take it as sick time/vacation time/PTO,” and you take that in half day increments. Fine. Be gone for four hours.
What you really need to do is either ask your manager what the policies are or ask HR. The HR person will probably be right, but your manager will be the one enforcing it and making your blissful existence miserable if you screw up.
I realize that many companies administer their exempt employees incorrectly. They don’t want to pay you overtime, but they also want to deduct the time you spent discussing new shoes with Jane over lunch from your paycheck. For some reason this is a difficult concept for many companies (especially small ones) to grasp. As I said, they can’t do that. They can, however, fire you for that. (Or for nothing, really. The beauties of an at-will workforce.)
However, the real answer to your question is to ask at work. “Hey, boss, if I have a doctor’s appointment on Tuesday, do I have to take time off, or can I just go and come back. I’ll be gone about an hour.” If he says, “I’ll dock your pay for the hour you are gone,” you respond, “I’m an exempt employee and legally you can’t do that. You can, however, require I use vacation and I’ll take a half day, or you can just say no.”