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HR-415 Winter Break Leave Q&A

1. What period of time is covered by the winter break?
The period of winter break starts at 12a.m. (midnight) the day following the observed Christmas holiday and ends at 11:59 p.m. before the New Year’s Day observed holiday.

2. I am an hourly paid, non-benefit eligible employee. Am I eligible for winter break paid leave or will I be paid if I work during winter break reduced operations?
Non-benefit eligible employees (including student employees) are not eligible for winter break paid leave. Non-benefit eligible employees (including student employees) will only be paid for hours worked and are not eligible for equivalent paid time off later.

Please note that employees should not work during the winter break without prior approval.

3. Does the winter break leave count towards overtime?
No. Only hours actually worked over 40 in the work week (Sunday through Saturday) count towards overtime.

4. Is Winter Break Leave the same as Holiday Pay?
No. Collected Rules and Regulations, Section 340.040 address which days are designated as official University holidays. Winter Break Leave is the period after Christmas Day holiday running through the end of the day before New Year’s Day holiday. These days are designated as Winter Break Reduced Operations, per Collected Rules and Regulations, Section 340.045: Winter Break Leave.

5. How is previously scheduled time off that falls during the winter break handled?
Except for a leave of absence, any time off during the period of winter break should be accounted for using the Time & Labor time reporting codes for eligible Winter Break Leave.

Eligible employees who are not required to work during that period should not use vacation, personal days, etc. to cover the time off even if the time off was previously scheduled.

6. I am maxing out on my vacation accrual (or about to lose personal days) and planned to use vacation (or personal days) during the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. Can I use my vacation (or personal days) and save the winter break leave to use later?
No. If you are not required to work during the winter break, you must account for that time off using the winter break leave code. You cannot save the winter break leave to use it later.

7. Are employees eligible for shift differential if they are not required to work during the winter break?
Yes. Employees should receive applicable shift differential if the employee is normally scheduled to work an eligible shift.

8. I work in a department that will be closed; however, I would like to spend time reviewing emails and catching up on work during the winter break week. Am I able to record my hours worked and use the corresponding winter break leave time later?
No. Only employees who are required to work during the winter break are eligible to use winter break leave at a later date. Please note that non-exempt employees (i.e., hourly paid employees) should not review emails or otherwise perform work at home during the winter break without prior approval.

9. How is pay for winter break handled for employees who work nonstandard work schedules (e.g., an employee regularly scheduled to work 80 hours over a two week pay period but the hours are not evenly split over that two week period, an employee who works four 10-hour days, etc.)?
Employees are eligible for winter break leave based on their FTE and their regular work schedule. For employees who regularly work a nonstandard work schedule, winter break leave should be used to make them whole for their regularly scheduled hours that fall during the winter break.

Timekeepers will need to enter the appropriate winter break adjustment codes to ensure the leave reported and remaining balance is appropriate, ensuring the employee uses Winter Break Leave “not to exceed the amount of hours of their regular work schedule” per HR-415 Winter Break Leave.

For questions or clarification, please contact your campus HR office.

10. How should winter break be recorded on a day I am called in to work, pursuant to HR-212 Call-In/Call-Back, Standby?
The hours of winter break leave that are claimed for a day when an employee is called in to work should be reduced by the number of hours actually worked that day without regard to call-pay minimum or call-pay premium.

11. Does Standby pay (HR-212) reduce the hours of Winter Break claimed?
No. Standby pay does not reflect hours actually worked. Therefore, it does not reduce the hours claimed as winter break leave.

12. How does winter break leave and funeral leave (HR-412) work when applied in the same period?
To ensure appropriate tracking and record keeping of funeral leave, BEREAVEMENT should be recorded in lieu of winter break leave. Timekeepers will need to process an adjustment to the Winter Break Leave balance to reduce the available winter break hours accordingly. Employees cannot claim funeral leave and winter break leave for the same hours.

Funeral leave is not considered work hours and there was no expectation that employees on a funeral leave would be available to work during the winter break; therefore, they are not eligible for winter break leave to be used at a later date.

13. How long do I have to use the winter break leave?
If you are not required to work during the winter break, you must use the leave to cover the time off during the period designated as winter break.

If you are required to work during the winter break, you will have hours available to use at a later date. This time must be used on or before November 30 of the following year, prior to transferring to a position which is not eligible for Winter Break, or prior to separating employment (whichever comes first).

14. I have winter break hours to use prior to November 30. Do these hours need to be pre-approved?
Yes. Per HR-107 Attendance, planned absences should be requested and approved in advance.

15. I was required to work during the winter break and now have hours available to use prior to November 30 of the following year; however, I have accepted a transfer to work in another department. Am I able to use those hours in my new position?
It depends. The department that required you to work should work with you to schedule time off prior to your transfer, to the extent possible.

If you transfer to a position which is not eligible for Winter Break Leave, any balance remaining will be for forfeited.

If you transfer to a position which is eligible for Winter Break Leave, any balance remaining will be transferred with you and must be used prior to November 30 or they will be forfeited.

16. If I have hours not used but leave the University, am laid off, or retire before I use them, will those hours be paid out when I terminate?
No. Any hours would be forfeited if not used before you separate from the University.

17. Are employees who are on a leave of absence (paid or unpaid) during the winter break eligible for winter break leave?
No. There was no expectation that employees on a leave of absence (paid or unpaid) would be available to work during the winter break, so they are not eligible for winter break leave.

18. Are employees who are on a layoff leave of absence (paid or unpaid) eligible for winter break leave?
No. There was no expectation that these employees would be available to work during the winter break, so they are not eligible for winter break leave.

19. What if I am required to work during the winter break but I am sick during that time?
Employees who are designated to work during the winter break period and call in sick should use available applicable leave, other than WBL/WBM, to cover that time off. They will not be allowed to carry forward any hours of winter break leave for the hours they did not actually work. Timekeepers will need to process an adjustment to the leave balance to reduce the available hours accordingly.

20. If I am out on FMLA during the winter break, will that time off be covered by winter break leave?
No. There was no expectation that employees on a leave of absence (paid or unpaid) would be available to work during the winter break, so they are not eligible for winter break leave.

21. If I am out on FMLA, does the period of winter break count against my weeks of eligible FMLA leave?
No. Per FMLA regulations, a week of closure does not reduce an employee’s FMLA leave entitlement.

22. How does winter break leave and separations (HR-118 Separations) work when applied in the same period?
Pursuant to HR-118, terminating employees are entitled to pay for all salaries and wages earned to the last actual day of work. Winter Break Leave is not considered hours worked and therefore an employee’s last day may not fall during winter break leave period.

Additionally, per HR-118 at least two (2) weeks’ notice is required to remain in good standing; however, if the 2 weeks includes the winter break period, then a shorter notice may be accepted and the employee remain in good standing.

23. Are employees who are retiring and are on vacation pay out (VPO) leave of absence during the winter break eligible for winter break leave?
No. There was no expectation that these employees would be available to work during the winter break, so they are not eligible for winter break leave.

24. How does the winter break impact the retirement date for employees who have submitted a Notice of Intent (NOI) to retire?
Winter Break Leave is not available for retiring employees who have completed their last day worked prior to Winter Break Leave and are receiving vacation payout.

For questions about how Winter Break Leave may affect dates of retirement, please contact the UM System Office of Human Resources at retirement@umsystem.edu or 573-882-2146. You may also contact your campus Benefit/Retirement Specialist (HR Generalist).

Please keep in mind, the UM System Office of Human Resources will be closed as a result of the winter break reduced operations. Please plan accordingly.

25. Will the winter break period and the associated pay occur every year?
The winter break has been adopted pursuant to a Collected Rule and Regulation of the University of Missouri. Therefore, it will continue in the future unless there is board action to revise the Collected Rule and Regulation.


Date Created: 11/30/2018
Last Updated: 11/30/2018; 10/01/2019

Reviewed 2019-10-07