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Human Resources

Leave of Absence Policies for Faculty, Continuing Lecturers, and Administrative, Professional, Clerical, and Service Staff (VI.E.2)

Volume VI: Human Resources
Chapter E: Leaves of Absence
Issuing Office: Human Resource Services
Responsible Officer: Executive VP and Treasurer
Responsible Office: Human Resource Services
Originally Issued: January 1, 1999
Most Recently Revised: November 18, 2011

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Statement of Policy
Reason for Policy
Who Should Know This Policy
Procedures
History

STATEMENT OF POLICY

Purdue University provides leaves for military service, jury duty, witness duty, bereavement, and worker's compensation.

REASON FOR POLICY

This policy sets forth terms related the following leaves of absence:

WHO SHOULD KNOW THIS POLICY

  • President
  • Provost
  • Associate and Vice Provosts
  • Chancellors
  • Vice Chancellors
  • Vice Presidents
  • Deans
  • Faculty
  • Directors/Department Heads/Chairs
  • Administrative and Professional Staff
  • Clerical and Service Staff
  • Supervisors
  • Business Offices
  • Human Resources Staff

PROCEDURES

Paid and Unpaid Military Leave

Introduction

Purdue University provides paid and unpaid military leave to eligible employees consistent with the requirements of state and federal law including, but not limited to, the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-Employment Rights Act (USERRA) 38 U.S.C. Section 4301 et. seq. However, where this policy provides that an employee is eligible to be paid during military leave, this policy will govern.

This policy is based in large part on the major provisions of the USERRA. Therefore, the USERRA and the campus human resources department should be consulted whenever an employee requests military leave.

Scope

This policy applies to all individuals employed by the University.

Eligibility

All regular, full-time and part-time employees are eligible for military leave. Temporary employees are not eligible for military leave, except as may be authorized by the employee's department head or director.

Military leave will be granted for voluntary or involuntary service in the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, the Army National Guard, and the Air National Guard when engaged in active duty for training, or full-time National Guard duty, the commissioned corps of the Public Health Service, and any other category of service designated by the President of the United States in time of war or national emergency.

Paid Military Leave

Eligible employees are entitled to 15 workdays (i.e., 120 hours) of paid military leave without loss of benefits each calendar year. Travel time required to report to the location of military duty is included in the 15-day allowance.

Exempt employees, as defined under the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be paid their regular salary for each workday of paid military leave. Non-exempt employees, as defined under the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be paid their straight-time hourly rate of pay for each workday of paid military leave.

  • Paid military leave will be paid in the employee's regular paycheck.
  • Paid military leave may not be taken in increments of less than one-half workday (i.e., four hours).

Unpaid Military Leave

Military leave exceeding 15 workdays in a calendar year will be unpaid.

Employee Notice of Need for Leave

All employees should, if possible, request military leave by completing an appropriate University leave request form. However, military leave will not be denied if an employee gives at least verbal notice to his or her department. Further, no notice is necessary where circumstances make giving notice impossible or unreasonable or giving notice is precluded by military necessity. Employees should also provide to their departments a copy of their official orders to report for military leave.

Employee Reinstatement Rights

Prerequisites: An employee is eligible for reinstatement if:

  • The employee was discharged under honorable conditions;
  • The employee applied for reinstatement within the time frames specified in paragraph two below;
  • The employee's cumulative military leave while working at the University, as calculated under USERRA, did not exceed five calendar years; and
  • The employee gave advance notice of the need for leave as required under this policy.

Time Frames for Reporting to the University or Applying for Reinstatement

To be eligible for reinstatement, an employee must notify his or her department of his or her intent to return to work within the following time frames:

If the period of service was less than 31 calendar days, the employee must report to the University no later than the beginning of the first full, regularly scheduled work period following completion of service (plus an eight-hour period following the employee's transportation to his or her residence).

If the period of service was more than 30 calendar days but less than 181 calendar days, the employee must submit an application for reinstatement to the University no later than 14 calendar days after the completion of service.

If the period of service was more than 180 calendar days, the employee must submit an application for reinstatement to the University no later than 90 calendar days after his or her completion of service.

If the employee was hospitalized or convalescing from an illness or injury incurred or aggravated during service, the employee must report to the University or submit an application for reinstatement to the University at the end of the necessary recovery period (normally, not to exceed two years).

Circumstances Barring Reinstatement

Notwithstanding an employee's eligibility for reinstatement as described above, an employee will not be reinstated if:

  • The University's circumstances have changed such that reinstatement is impossible or unreasonable; or
  • In the case of a disabled employee, reinstatement would impose an undue hardship on the University.

Positions

The position to which an employee will be reinstated depends upon the length of service and his or her ability to perform the duties of the job as set forth below:

  • If the service was less than 91 calendar days, the employee will be placed in the job he or she would have had but for the military service leave, provided that the employee is qualified to perform the job duties. If the employee is not qualified to perform the duties of the job, the University will make reasonable efforts to qualify the employee for the job. If such efforts are unsuccessful, the employee will be reinstated to the job he or she held when leave began.
  • If the service was more than 90 calendar days, the University will place the employee in the job he or she would have had but for the leave or a position of similar seniority status and pay that the employee is qualified to perform. If the employee is not qualified to perform the job he or she would have had but for the leave, the University will make reasonable efforts to qualify the employee. If such efforts are unsuccessful, the employee will be placed in the job he or she had when leave began, or a position of like seniority, status, and pay, which the employee is qualified to perform.
  • If an employee is not re-employed under the conditions listed above, he or she must be re-employed in any other position that most closely approximates the job he or she would have had but for the leave and then the job he or she had when the leave began.
  • If a disability sustained, aggravated, or manifested while an employee was in military service prevents him or her from performing a job to which he or she would otherwise be entitled under this policy, the University will employ the employee in either:
    • A position of equivalent seniority, pay, and status for which he or she is qualified or could become qualified with reasonable training efforts by the University; or
    • In a position that most closely approximates a position of equivalent seniority, pay, and status.
    • The University may terminate any employee who is not eligible to be reinstated under this policy.

Compensation and Length of Service

An employee on military leave without pay will receive any across-the-board compensation adjustments that he or she would have received if he or she had not been on leave. If a compensation increase is tied to skill, ability, or the qualifications of an employee and the employee's department determines that the employee's skill and performance upon returning to work measure up to those of other employees who have received merit increases, the employee will be given an increase.

An employee's length of service will accrue during military leave.

Benefits

Employees who are reinstated upon returning from military leave without pay are entitled to all seniority-based benefits they had when their leave began plus any seniority-based benefits that would have accrued but for their leave. Employees who are reinstated upon returning from military leave without pay are entitled to the same level and extent of non-seniority-based benefits they would have received on a non-military leave of absence.

Group Health Insurance

Generally, health insurance is provided to an employee by the military during active service. However, subject to the requirements listed below, an employee may continue to receive University-provided health insurance for up to 24 months from the date military leave begins, or until the deadline for applying for reinstatement expires, whichever occurs first.

  • If the military leave is 30 calendar days or less, the employee may continue to receive health insurance coverage by paying his or her portion of the insurance premium.
  • If the military leave exceeds 30 calendar days, the employee may continue his or her insurance coverage by paying the full premium, which includes the University's portion and the employee's portion.

Term Life, Personal Accident, and Dependent Life Insurance

Term life insurance, personal accident insurance, and dependent life insurance do not continue during an employee's military leave without pay.

Long-Term Disability, Short-Term Disability, and Flexible Spending Programs

Long-term disability, short-term disability, and flexible spending programs do not continue during an employee's military leave without pay.

Paid Sick Leave and Vacation Leave

Upon reinstatement, seniority-dependent provisions of the paid sick leave policy and the vacation leave policy will be calculated as if the employee was actively employed and/or in pay status during the military leave.

Holiday Pay

Holiday pay will not be paid during unpaid military leave.

PERF

Upon reinstatement, an employee will be given creditable service for military leave totaling six months or less during any four consecutive years.

TIAA/CREF

Upon reinstatement, employees participating in TIAA/CREF will receive credit towards their TIAA/CREF waiting period for any time on military leave.

Substituting Paid Vacation Leave

Employees will be permitted to use accrued, unused paid vacation leave during unpaid military leave. The University, however, may not require employees to use accrued, unused paid leave during unpaid military leave.

Termination For Just Cause

If an employee's military service exceeded 30 calendar days, but was less than 180 calendar days, he or she may be terminated only for just cause for six months following his or her return to work.

If an employee's military service was more than 180 calendar days, he or she may be terminated only for just cause for one year following his or her return to work.

Non-Discrimination

The University prohibits discrimination against any individual who is a member of, applies to be a member of, performs, has performed, applies to perform, or has an obligation to perform service in a uniformed service.

Paid Jury Duty and Witness Duty Leave

Introduction

Purdue University provides paid and unpaid jury duty leave and witness duty leave to eligible employees as set forth below so that they may fulfill their civic duties competently and reliably.

Scope

This policy applies to all regular full-time or part-time (i.e., .5 FTE or greater) employees of the University. An employee who is a defendant convicted in a criminal proceeding, or an employee who appears as an expert witness is not eligible for paid leave.

Eligibility For Paid Leave

A regular full-time or part-time (i.e., .5 FTE or greater) employee involuntarily summoned to serve as a juror in any federal, state, or county court or a federal or state administrative agency will be eligible for paid jury duty leave without loss of benefits. Similarly, any such employee involuntarily summoned to appear as a witness in any federal, state, or county court or a federal or state administrative agency will be eligible for paid witness duty leave without loss of benefits.

Amount of Benefit

Exempt employees, as defined under the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be paid their regular salary for each workday of leave.

Non-exempt employees, as defined under the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be paid eight hours of pay at their regular, straight-time hourly rate of pay for the number of hours they were scheduled to work on the day of leave, excluding overtime, for each workday of leave.

Paid leave will not be offset by any per diem compensation for jury service paid to the employee. The benefit will be paid in the employee's regular paycheck.

Notice and Verification

An employee summoned to serve as a juror or as a witness must notify his or her supervisor immediately and provide the supervisor with a copy of the summons. In addition, the employee must request leave in writing on an appropriate University leave request form.

Upon completion of jury duty or witness duty, the employee must furnish his or her supervisor with official verification that the leave was due to jury service or witness service.

Postponement of Service

The University will make no attempt to have an employee's service on a jury postponed except when business conditions necessitate such action.

Right to Reinstatement

An employee will be reinstated to the same position he or she held when the leave began, unless the position has been eliminated due to business necessity or the employee is otherwise unable to perform the essential functions of the job, with or without reasonable accommodation, as required by law.

Paid Bereavement Leave

Introduction

Purdue University recognizes that a time of bereavement is very difficult for an employee. The University therefore provides paid bereavement leave to eligible employees to ensure that they are able to attend to such matters.

Scope

This policy applies to all regular full-time and part-time (i.e., .5 FTE or greater) staff employed by the University.

Benefit Allowance

  • Immediate family: Employees are eligible for up to three workdays of paid bereavement leave over five consecutive calendar days for the death of the employee's spouse, parent, child, grandparent, grandchild, or sibling, and corresponding in-law or step-relative.
  • Relative living in employee's home: Employees are eligible for up to three workdays of paid bereavement leave over five consecutive calendar days for the death of the employee's uncle, aunt, niece, nephew, or first cousin if the relative lived in the employee's home.
  • Relative: Employees are eligible for up to one workday of paid bereavement leave for the death of the employee's uncle, aunt, niece, nephew, or first cousin.
  • Fellow employee: Employees are eligible for up to one-half workday of paid leave to attend the funeral of a fellow employee, subject to the staffing needs of the employee's department as determined by the head of the department.

Amount of Benefit

One workday of leave under this policy equals the number of hours the employee was scheduled to work on the day of leave, excluding overtime.

Exempt employees, as defined under the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be paid their regular salary for each workday of leave.

Non-exempt employees, as defined under the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be paid their regular, straight-time hourly rate for each workday of leave.

The benefit will be paid in the employee's regular paycheck.

Procedure For Requesting Leave

Paid bereavement leave must be requested in writing on an appropriate University leave request form.

Worker's Compensation Leave

Introduction

Purdue University provides worker's compensation benefits to eligible employees as required by the Indiana Worker's Compensation Act and the Occupational Diseases Act (jointly "the Act"). Generally, under the Act, an injured employee is eligible to receive weekly wage replacement benefits (temporary total disability benefits), medical benefits, and benefits for any permanent partial impairment or permanent total disability caused by a work-related injury or illness.

Scope

This policy applies to all individuals employed by the University.

Eligibility

All University employees are eligible for worker's compensation benefits. An eligible employee will receive worker's compensation benefits if he or she sustains an injury or illness that arises out of and in the course of his or her employment as provided under the Act.

Reporting An Injury or Illness

Any employee who sustains an injury or illness that he or she believes may be work-related must report the injury or illness to his or her supervisor immediately. Failure to report an injury or illness promptly may result in the University denying the employee's claim for worker's compensation benefits.

Reinstatement

The University will normally reinstate an employee who is on worker's compensation leave for 12 continuous months or less to his or her regular position if he or she can perform the essential functions of the job, with or without reasonable accommodation as required by law. If the employee is on leave more than 12 continuous months, the University will terminate the employee's employment, as permitted by law. The employee will continue to receive worker's compensation benefits as required under the Worker's Compensation Act, regardless of his or her right to reinstatement or employment status.

Return-To-Work Statement

Upon returning to work from worker's compensation leave, the employee will furnish to his or her department a return-to-duty statement from the employee's principal attending health care provider. The statement must indicate that the employee has been released to return to work. It must also specify any physical or other limitation on the employee's ability to perform regular or other duties and the duration of those limitations.

If an employee is on worker's compensation leave and intermittent FMLA leave concurrently, a return-to-duty statement will not be required when the employee's intermittent FMLA leave ends, except as permitted or required by the Americans With Disabilities Act.

If the employee does not provide a statement upon returning to work, then reinstatement may be delayed until the employee submits a statement. If the employee fails to submit a statement within a reasonable period of time from the department's request, he or she may be disciplined, up to and including termination.

With the employee's written consent, a representative of the campus human resources department may contact the employee's health care provider to clarify and authenticate the return-to-duty statement, subject to any applicable provisions of the Act, the FMLA, or the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Sick Leave and Vacation Leave

An employee on worker's compensation leave will accrue paid sick leave (clerical and service staff only) and paid vacation leave at his or her normal accrual rate for up to 12 continuous months of leave. Thereafter, the employee will not accrue sick leave or vacation leave.

Holiday Pay

An employee on worker's compensation leave will not receive pay for any holiday occurring during the leave period.

Supplementing Weekly Wage Replacement Benefits (i.e., Temporary Total Disability Benefits)

An employee may use accrued, unused paid sick leave and vacation leave benefits to supplement weekly wage replacement benefits; however, the total weekly compensation paid during the leave may not exceed the employee's normal weekly pay.

For regular, full-time, non-exempt employees, the normal weekly pay will be determined by multiplying the employee's regular, straight-time hourly rate of pay times 40 hours. The normal weekly pay for a part-time, non-exempt employee will be based on their full-time equivalency. For exempt employees, the normal weekly pay will be the employee's normal weekly salary.

The employee must request supplemental benefits on an appropriate University leave request form.

Coordination With Family and Medical Leave Act Leave

If an employee qualifies for worker's compensation leave and FMLA leave, the two leaves will run concurrently. The employee must meet the requirements of both leave policies while the leaves are running concurrently and upon returning to work. If the employee exhausts his or her FMLA leave and remains on worker's compensation leave, the worker's compensation leave policy will govern the leave including, but not limited to, the employee's right to be reinstated. If the employee is no longer eligible for worker's compensation leave, but continues to be eligible for FMLA leave, the FMLA leave policy will govern.

Confidentiality

All matters relating to an employee's medical condition or treatment will be kept confidential to the maximum extent possible. All medical documentation will be filed in the employee's confidential, secure medical file, separate from his or her human resources file.

Deviation From Leave Policies

Any deviation from the leave policies described in this policy requires approval by an executive vice president, vice president, chancellor, or the director of Intercollegiate Athletics, or their designees, unless the leave policy in question specifically authorizes or requires otherwise.

Maximum Leave (All Leaves Except Sabbatical and Research Leaves)

An employee's total continuous leave(s) of absence, whether paid or unpaid, may not exceed one calendar year, unless required by law. Family and Medical Leave Act leaves will not be considered in applying this rule. For example, if an employee was on paid sick leave for one year, and the University designated two months of the sick leave as FMLA leave, only 10 calendar months would count toward the one year limit (12 months of paid sick leave minus two months of FMLA leave).

Questions

Questions regarding the foregoing policies should be directed to your campus human resources department or human resource service team (West Lafayette).

HISTORY

November 18, 2011: Policy number changed to VI.E.2 (formerly IV.10.2).

April 15, 2005: Policy IV.10.2 was created to supersede Executive Memorandum C-47, dated January 1, 1999. Executive Memorandum C-47 became outdated when the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provisions it contained were rewritten and issued in Policy IV.10.1.

This policy supersedes the following:

  • Executive Memorandum C-47, dated January 1, 1999
  • Executive Memorandum C-38, dated July 21, 1995
  • Executive Memorandum C-30, dated October 8, 1993
  • Executive Memorandum B-22, dated October 31, 1973
  • Business Office Memorandum No. 188, dated November 8, 1991
  • Business Office Memorandum No. 74, dated May 3, 1962