The Federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), entitles eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave in a 12-month period for the following reasons:

  • the birth or adoption of a child or placement of a child for foster care
  • the care of a seriously ill child, parent, or spouse
  • the employee's own serious illness which causes the employee to be unable to perform the functions of their position
  • a child, parent, or spouse who is called to active military duty

You are eligible for FMLA leave if you have been employed either part-time or full-time with the University for at least 12 months, which do not need to be consecutive or continuous, and have worked at least 1250 hours in the 12 months prior to your absence. In addition, FMLA provides for a total of 26 workweeks of unpaid leave during any consecutive 12-month period when you are needed to care for a child, parent, spouse, or next of kin who is a military service member who was injured in the line of duty.

Absences may be of an ongoing nature or, when medically necessary, may be taken as an intermittent leave or on a reduced leave schedule. Whenever possible, you should make a reasonable effort to schedule any medical treatment visits so as not to unduly disrupt operations.

Because University policies typically exceed the FMLA 12-week provision, you should refer to the applicable University policy or union agreement to answer any questions about your absence (length, pay, etc.). FMLA time and absences provided by University policies run concurrently.

Your supervisor or Human Resources Representative will send you an FMLA Medical Certification Form – you complete part of that form and the treating physician completes the remainder of the form. When you receive the form, you will receive instructions on where to return the completed form. Absences related to birth and adoption do not require an FMLA Medical Certification Form.

FMLA requires that all covered absences are recorded as FMLA. Because the overarching philosophy of the FMLA regulations is that you cannot be disadvantaged due to an absence for an FMLA qualifying event, these absences must be recorded correctly so that errors are avoided when making decisions about promotions, merit pay, tenure, etc.

If you are on a leave without pay during your FMLA 12 weeks and elect to continue membership in the group insurances in which you are enrolled prior to commencement of the leave, then you will be billed for the regular, employee rate for those insurances. 
If you elect not to continue membership in your benefits while on leave without pay, contact the Employee Benefits Office to discuss if you will be required to meet any qualification requirements imposed by the plan (e.g., waiting period).