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Leaves of Absence

This policy provides regular full-time and regular part-time staff with different types of voluntary unpaid leaves of absence. Leaves are granted or extended solely at the discretion of the University upon the request of the employee, and are not considered earned rights.

An employee on an approved leave of absence is entitled to return to his/her same or equivalent position without a loss of pay or benefits whenever possible. This is contingent upon the employee's ability to perform the essential functions of the job, and upon there being no intervening change in staffing needs due to reorganization or economic conditions.

A staff member on an approved leave of absence or Family and Medical Leave will be required to use his/her accrued vacation and CPL time if and when the unpaid portion of the leave begins. CPL days will not be earned during any type of leave of absence.

When an employee on a leave of absence accepts other employment, files for unemployment compensation, or fails to return on the first workday immediately following the end of the leave without approval, that employee will be deemed to have voluntarily resigned his/her employment with the University.

An employee who is not working due to a medically certified leave of absence for nine consecutive months loses active employment status and becomes inactive/terminated.

Leave of Absence: Personal Short-Term

Leaves of absence up to 30 days without pay for personal reasons may be granted upon the approval of the department head. There are no extensions allowed.

Benefits continue during a short-term personal leave of absence. Regular deductions for benefit contributions that are missed during a short-term leave will arrear. The total amount of arreared premiums will be deducted in next pay cycle upon the employee's return to work.

If a personal short-term leave for some unexpected reason develops into a long-term requirement, it is reprocessed as a long-term leave with an effective date beginning retroactively with the original date of absence, if approved.

Leave of Absence: Personal Long-Tterm

Leaves of absence for more than 30 days without pay for personal reasons may be granted by joint agreement of the employee and the University. Leaves are limited to four months and not granted to employees with less than one completed year of service. Extensions or leaves in excess of four months are regarded as exceptions and are based on some benefit to the University, not solely on the benefit to the employee. The maximum leave granted, either initially or by extension, shall not exceed one year.

Requests for personal leaves of absence or extensions thereof must be made in writing.

All leaves of absence for personal reasons in excess of 30 days require the approval of the appropriate officer (i.e., the president, provost or vice president).

New vacation eligibility will not begin until the employee has returned to work full time for 20 consecutive workdays, and a prorated adjustment will be made for the inactive period of employment during a leave of absence.

Benefits during personal leaves of absence are either suspended or become the responsibility of the employee. Eligibility and, if applicable, accrual cease for the following:

  • Comprehensive Paid Leave (CPL)
  • Holiday pay
  • Special paid days declared by the University
  • Vacation
Group medical, dental, life, short and long-term disability as well as other applicable insurance(s) may be continued according to the provisions of the plan document or contract involved, but the employee will be responsible for prepayment of the full amount of all coverage-related premiums. Monthly billing will be coordinated by the Bursar's Office.

Tuition remission benefits are available during an employee's approved leave of absence. All retirement annuity (TIAA-CREF) contributions are suspended for the duration of the leave of absence.

Credit for service is not disrupted during an approved leave of absence.

Leaves of Absence: Illness/Injury

Leaves of absence for illness/injury not covered by short-term disability or worker's compensation are subject to the general provisions of this policy. Establishment of a leave for illness/injury requires a physician's certification or other acceptable documentation of the disability. Leaves of absence for illness/injury terminate upon physician's release to regular duty, or if there is other evidence that the employee has recovered sufficiently to return to work, or when total disability is established.

Absences due to illness/injury of five continuous workdays or less are treated as CPL days. In consideration of the employee's attendance record, a physician's certification of ability to return to work may be required by the supervisor for absences of three or more consecutive workdays.

Benefits for leaves of absence for illness/injury are provided according to the practices for personal leaves, unless the employee is eligible for comprehensive paid leave and/or short-term disability insurance. If and when the unpaid portion of the leave begins, the employee will become responsible for prepayment of his/her portion of the monthly premium for applicable medical, dental and other insurance(s). Billing for insurance coverage(s) will be established for any leave of absence lasting more than four weeks. Monthly billing will be coordinated by the Bursar's Office.

Workers' compensation absences are automatically considered an approved leave of absence and are granted without prejudice. If there is a conflict with state regulations, state regulations will prevail.

Return to Work Procedure

The return from an approved leave of absence is accomplished through an appropriate Personnel Action Form (PAF) generated by the department. Failure to report to work without approval on the first working day following any leave of absence is considered a voluntary resignation.

Questions regarding this policy should be directed to your HR representative.

The University reserves the right to change the Leave of Absence Policy as it deems necessary.

This page is designed to summarize the University of Hartford's Leaves of Absence Policy. It is not intended to be all inclusive. Where there are differences between the provisions of this website and more specific statements contained in University files (such as plan documents), those statements shall control.