Skip to main content

HR-408 Leaves of Absence Q&As

1. If an employee is unable to work for more than 30 days but has accrued vacation or sick leave, if applicable, to cover that period of time, must the department hold the employee's position?
Yes, the employee is still considered to be in their position while in paid status and the department cannot fill the position. When the employee returns to work from paid leave, they are entitled to the same position.

2. Can an employee return to work earlier than the expiration date of the leave?
It is the department's discretion whether to allow the employee to return to work earlier than expected (except FMLA leaves which require the employee to only give two (2) days' notice of intent to return to work). Normally, a department should permit the employee to return to work early unless no position is available.

3. Are employees required to exhaust personal days before they can go on an unpaid leave of absence?
While the policy requires employees to exhaust vacation and sick leave, if applicable, it does not require using personal days except under the Family and Medical Leave Act. However, employees cannot use personal days while on leave and will lose any unused personal days on their anniversary date.

4. For employees on leave due to a temporary shutdown, is there a requirement to exhaust vacation?
No. These leaves are at the employer's request so employees do not have to exhaust vacation.

5. If an employee is on a leave with partial pay, is the employee entitled to holiday pay?
No. Unless the employee's FTE while on leave with partial pay is 75 percent FTE or greater, the employee will not be paid for holidays.

6. Does an employee get preferential hiring rights if a position is not available at the time the leave expires and the employee is placed on a six (6)-month leave?
Yes, the policy grants an employee preferential hiring rights, but only in the department or division which granted the leave.

7. In calculating the length of a medical leave of absence, is any portion of a FMLA leave included?
Yes, any unpaid portion of an FMLA leave will be included.


Date Created: 09/26/1997
Last Updated: 07/21/1998; 10/29/2020

Reviewed 2020-10-30