September 16, 2020 – 12:03 pm
Everything You Need to Know When an Employee Takes a Leave of

An FMLA eligible employee may take a leave for up to 12 weeks during which time the position will generally be held open. Leaves may also be intermittent or reduced schedule. If the position has been filled, the employee, upon return within 12 weeks, will be placed in an equivalent position (i.e., with same pay and benefits) in the same department or division. If the position no longer exists due to a work force reduction or departmental reorganization while the employee is on leave, the employee is not guaranteed placement upon return from leave.

When both spouses work for Loyola, and each person requests FMLA leave for either the birth of a child, and the childs subsequent care, or the placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care, the total 12 week FMLA entitlement may be divided between them.

Approval Procedure

  • Effective January 1, 2017, general and personal leaves of absences, and Family & Medical Leaves covered by the Family and Medical Leave Act are administered by Matrix Absence Management.
  • General, personal, and FMLA leave of absences must be requested 30 days prior to the start of the leave, where the reason for the leave is foreseeable. Up to 12 weeks of FMLA- approved leaves may be granted within a 12 month period.

Holding Positions

General Leave FMLA Leave

If the leave is for 30 days or less, whether paid or unpaid, the position will be held open. For any leave beyond 30 days, the position may be filled by submitting a requisition to the Campus Human Resources Department.

The department will generally hold the job open for 12 weeks or until the employee returns, whichever is sooner. If the position is not held, an equivalent position must be provided by the department or component/division. If the employee is granted an extension beyond 12 weeks, the position may be filled, and the rules of the FMLA will not apply.

Note: For any leave in excess of thirty days, an employee must complete a checklist of benefit and other employment information at the Campus Human Resources Office.

Extending a Leave

A request for an extension of a leave requires the written approval of the department/component head and the Human Resources manager at least two weeks prior to the expiration date. If a leave expires prior to the employee's return, the employee is considered to have terminated voluntarily.

If an FMLA leave is approved for less than 12 weeks, it may be extended up to the 12 week maximum by contacting Matrix Absence Management for FMLA re-certification. The employee will be informed what additional information may be needed to certify the request. If the leave is approved for a period exceeding 12 weeks, the reinstatement provisions of the FMLA will not apply, and the procedure covering the extension of general leaves is applicable. If the position has been filled, the employee may apply for any open position for which he or she is qualified upon return.

Return to Work

Two weeks prior to the end of the leave, the employee shall contact his or her department to determine whether the former position is still available. If the former position is not open, the employee may apply for any open positions for which he or she is qualified. There is no guarantee of reinstatement or re-employment.

The position generally will be held open for a maximum of 12 weeks. An employee returning within the 12 weeks will be reinstated in the same or an equivalent position in the department or component/division. A request to fill any position open due to an approved FMLA leave requires the approval of the Campus Human Resources Director and the Vice President of Human Resource Management.

Employees Unable to Perform Work

If a department can document that an employee is unable to perform the duties of the position because of illness or other reasons, the department head, with approval of the Campus Human Resource Director, may require the employee to take a leave of absence. Accrued sick leave may be used to compensate the employee during a medical-related leave in accordance with the provisions of the sick leave policy. Upon election, an employee may also use other appropriate banks of paid-time-off.

If an employee is placed on leave, it is the employee's responsibility to notify the department in advance when he or she is able to return to work. Before returning, the University requires the evidence of the employee's fitness for duty be presented to the Campus Human Resource Director. In the event of any question concerning the employee's condition, the University may require that the employee be examined by a physician or other specialist selected by the University.

Benefits

Vacation and sick time do not accrue during any unpaid portion of a leave of absence. An exempt or non-exempt staff employee does not accrue vacation and sick hours while on a Short-Term Disability leave, beginning after the 10-day elimination (waiting) period. Short-Term Disability benefits begin on the 11th day out for an eligible illness or disability that prevents them from working. Staff will start accruing Vacation and Sick hours only when they are released by their physician to return to work to active status. Refer to the Short-Term Disability Policy for additional details.

During the unpaid portion of a general leave, there is no University contribution to the premium cost (unless the unpaid leave is to perform service in the uniformed services for less than 31 days as indicated under USERRA). Health insurance will remain in force during the unpaid portion of the leave only if the employee makes arrangements with the Benefits office of the Human Resource Department to pay the premiums directly. If an employee is on FMLA leave, health insurance will remain in effect for the duration of the FMLA leave, provided the employee portion of the group premium is paid. The length of time insurance can be maintained is determined by the specific insurance contract and COBRA requirements.

Accrued Paid Time-Off

Normally, an employee is expected to use applicable accrued paid-time-off from the first day of the leave. Accrued sick time must be used to pay for time away from work due to an employee's medical disability.

Source: www.luc.edu

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