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Leaves (HR-400)

HR-408 Leaves of Absence

Summary

A leave of absence without pay may be granted when the requirements of the department permit, when such leave is for prolonged illness or injury, or for any exceptional personal or institutional reason. Leaves of absence without pay may be granted only after all appropriate accumulated leave has been used. Such leave must be requested by the employee and recommended by the department chairperson or administrative head, and approved in accordance with the current delegation of authority.

Eligibility

Any regular employee may be granted a leave of absence without pay when approved by the proper authority in order to preserve the employee's employment rights and benefits. A leave of absence may be granted only if the employee has a bona fide intention to return to the University following the leave. Leaves of absence without pay may be granted only after all  appropriate accumulated leave  has been used. Only in exceptional situations should a leave of absence be granted to an employee having less than six (6) months service.

Duration

All leaves of absence without pay of 30 calendar days or more must be approved in accordance with the current delegation of authority. Such leaves in excess of thirty (30) calendar days will become effective retroactive to the first day without pay. Leaves of absence of less than 30 calendar days may be handled as excused absences. A leave of absence may be granted for a period not to exceed one year but may not extend past the ending date of the employee's appointment. When Long-Term Disability benefits commence, a leave of absence without pay ends. Extensions of approved leaves of absence, not to exceed one year each or extend beyond the ending date of the employee's appointment, must be approved according to the current delegation of authority.

Temporary Closing

Employees in Housing, Food Services or similar units which periodically and temporarily close down or reduce the extent of their operation for specific periods of time not in excess of three (3) months may be granted a leave of absence during these periods when it is agreed that the employees will return to work at the earliest date their services are required. Leaves for temporary close down may not be extended beyond the period of three (3) months.

Benefits

  • Employees do not receive pay for holidays falling during the leave of absence.
  • While the period of the leave of absence is counted as length of service in computing vacation accrual rates, employees do not accumulate vacation or sick leave during the leave of absence. Exceptions may apply. (See HR 307 Workers' Compensation.)
  • Employees are granted personal days during the leave of absence. However, employees may not use personal days during the leave of absence and all unused personal days are lost at the end of the anniversary year if the employee is on leave of absence.
  • Other than for a leave of absence granted for extended illness or injury, military service, or research or development leave, and employee Family and Medical Leave, the period of leave of absence without pay is excluded in computing length of service under the University retirement plan; however, the leave of absence does not constitute an interruption of service. No leaves of absence, other than military service, or seasonal leave count toward vesting in the University retirement plan.
  • Employee contributions to the UM Retirement, Disability and Death Benefit Plan will not be required for leave of absence periods for which no salary is paid. Employee contributions will, however, be required for leave of absence periods that are recognized as service credit under the plan for which partial or full salary is paid.
  • During the leave period an employee is eligible to continue participation in the University of Missouri's staff benefit program (medical, dental, life, accidental death and long-term disability).

Return to Work

Upon expiration of a leave of absence, an employee is eligible for reinstatement to the former position or to one of similar requirements and compensation in the same department or division from which the leave was granted. Should a position not be available upon expiration of the leave of absence or return to work, the department chairperson or administrative head may request an extension until such time as a position for which the employee is qualified becomes available, for a period up to six (6) months. Employees shall have preferential hiring rights only in the department or division that granted the leave. Thereafter, the employee will be reinstated to the former position or to one of similar requirements and compensation in the same department or division from which the leave was granted. (For service and maintenance personnel, see “Understanding of Policies” Article VII, H, 1.) Failure to return to work upon expiration of the leave of absence or when a position becomes available results in termination of the employee's services.

Procedures

The Request for Leave of Absence (UMUW Form 108) and the turnaround PAF (PS PAF) must be submitted for a leave of absence, with or without pay that is 30 calendar days or more . Leaves of absence without pay for periods of less than 30 days may be granted by the department chairperson or administrative head and do not require the submission of the Request for Leave of Absence or turnaround Personnel Action Form (PS PAF). Employees who are granted a leave of absence without pay are removed from the payroll for the period of the leave of absence) and are placed back on the payroll only upon processing of the turnaround Personnel Action Form (PS PAF).

A physician's statement may be required for each request for leave of absence and request for extension of leave of absence due to illness or injury by the department or Human Resource Services. An employee returning from a leave of absence for illness or injury may be required to present a physician's release. A Report of Absence must be submitted for each leave of absence granted with or without pay for a period of less than 30 calendar days.

Should an employee fail to return to work upon expiration of a leave of absence, the department chairperson or administrative head is responsible for initiating procedures to terminate the employee's service. A turnaround Personnel Action Form (PS PAF) must be processed to terminate employment.

See Also

HR 117 Layoffs, HR 206 Office/Technical Compensation, HR 208 Service/Maintenance Longevity Increases, HR 210 Annual Increases, HR Benefits Handbooks-Retirement, Disability and Death Benefit Plan, HR 401 Holidays, HR 402 Vacations, HR 403 Personal Days, HR 404 Sick Leave, HR 405 Military Leave, HR 406 Development Leave, HR 407 Family and Medical Leave Act, and HR 409 Work-Incurred Injury or Illness

Date Created: 9/26/97

Last Updated: 7/01/09