I gave two weeks notice last Friday to have my last day be July 29th. I had previously scheduled an appointment with a doctor in another city on that Friday. Policy dictates using sick days for appointments is allowed.

I also set up two appointments on Thursday before that to try and take care of some things before beginning my new job (dentist, Lasik consultation).

When HR reached out to schedule an exit interview on Friday I explained the situation and asked to do the interview on Wednesday.

They followed up by asking "so your official last day should be Wednesday then?"

I believe if I say yes they will not pay me for those two days. Am I being greedy in wanting to be paid for those days?

I had over 90 hours of paid sick time accrued when I gave my notice. Even if I called in sick daily I couldn't use it all, and it is not paid out when I leave. (Separate pto category is)

I'm fairly confident I'm technically "in the right" to take them as sick days and be paid for them - but is it worth it from a "people perspective"?

Additional context from comments:

Q: What do you mean by a people perspective? Burning bridges?

A: Yeah, burning bridges, seeming greedy, putting myself before the other people at the company. I had more than my fair share of problems at certain times with this company, but overall I appreciate the owners, most upper management, everyone I've worked with in HR, etc. etc. I don't think asking for the 16 hours is that big of a deal, but I obviously have a biased perspective. I also have a lot of sick time accrued because they were flexible over the years in letting me work remotely when I otherwise would have had to use sick time.

  • What do you mean by a people perspective? Burning bridges? Jul 19, 2022 at 16:09
  • @GregoryCurrie see updated post, thanks for the question
    – TCooper
    Jul 19, 2022 at 16:13
  • "I believe if I say yes they will not pay me for those two days." Why do you believe that? Did you ask? Jul 19, 2022 at 16:25
  • 1
    Please specify the state. Some of the handling of PTO and sick leave is done at the state level. Jul 19, 2022 at 17:37
  • 3
    If it's sorted out then please write your own answer to the question so people reading this later (and we curious folk) know what happened. Jul 19, 2022 at 21:04

4 Answers 4


Simply being polite and asking nicely for clarification is the best course of action.

Seeing as it's in the policy to use this time in this manner and there was plenty of time accrued, HR has 0 issues with this. They simply wanted to plan for equipment return, access shut off, final exit preparations, etc.

The only "issue" was my being too pedantic and overthinking a simple phrase. I attempted to delete this Q&A frankly because I'm a bit embarrassed, but hopefully it does provide some insight for others


Unless state law or your contract requires them to honor the two week notice, the employer can decide that your last day of paid status is earlier.

The danger for you is that your last day of medical coverage could be your last day of work. That would mean if they end your employment on Wednesday then the medical visits you are planning for Thursday and Friday might not be covered. If you have a Flexible spending account, you will find that it won't cover medical expenses after your last day of work.

By telling them you will be out of the office on Thursday and Friday, they may decide it is easier to make your last day on Wednesday, because they won't be getting work out of you those last two days.

  • Thanks for the answer, as I mentioned in my question, I'm not concerned with the legal side of this. I believe I have a healthy overall relationship with this employer and it wouldn't turn to that, from either side. I would simply agree and say "thank you for everything" if they insisted on terminating my employment Wednesday, or this afternoon. I was simply looking for answers about how it would be perceived
    – TCooper
    Jul 19, 2022 at 20:45
  • I have worked at places with a similar policy (sick days disappear, vacation days are paid out). The employer looks for this being abused. They also don't like it when they aren't getting their 10 days of work. Jul 19, 2022 at 21:18
  • Fair, while this isn't necessarily an answer I needed, I think it's a very good answer for the site.
    – TCooper
    Jul 19, 2022 at 21:22
  • 5
    The fact that your answer is probably 100% right, underscores how sick of a system it is, when a random non-medical person can decide on a whim this afternoon that your neccessary doctors appointment tomorrow morning will not be covered by insurance. A job should never be coupled this tightly to your health. Not in a democracy.
    – nvoigt
    Jul 20, 2022 at 5:39

You should simply get back to them and say that you are required to give two weeks notice (if they is indeed the case), and that because you have notice on that Friday, your final day is two weeks after that.

You should ensure you are permitted to take (planned) sick leave during your notice period.

  • I did not know that people plan to be sick. I just get ill. Then it starts
    – Ed Heal
    Jul 19, 2022 at 17:33
  • 2
    @EdHeal he's referencing using sick time for a pre-scheduled appointment with a doctor or other medical professional, as I mention in the question
    – TCooper
    Jul 19, 2022 at 17:45
  • Similar to the other answer provided, I think this is very sound advice, just not what I personally needed. I should've mentioned in the question that the two weeks notice is just common courtesy/tradition more than anything. This is for at-will employment and as such can be terminated at anytime. I know some states do have protections for terminations in notice periods, etc. In this case it wouldn't have escalated to anything beyond company policy / "aww I wanted to use some of that accrued time, but thanks for everything anyway"
    – TCooper
    Jul 19, 2022 at 21:25

You absolutely have the right to use your sick days if you are sick, or if you have other need for treatments, and it is totally ethical. In the USA, many employers perceive things that are absolutely right and ethical but cost them money very poorly, and many will try to stop you from taking these sick days either by legal or illegal means.

What seems to be legal in the USA is something like this: "I'm giving notice, my last day is the 29th, and I have a doctor's appointment on the 29th". "No, we just decided your last day is actually the 28th".

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