Paid and Unpaid Time Off

Contents

Accrual of Sick Time

Accrual of Sick Time

Full-Time Staff

Part-Time Staff

Usage of Sick Time

Sick Leave

Payment of Accrued but Unused Sick Time

Leave Programs

Bereavement

Holidays

Personal Time

Full-Time Staff

Part-time Staff

Changes to Percentage of Effort within the Fiscal Year

Winter Recess

Jury Duty and Court Witness

Accrual of Vacation Time

Accrual of Vacation Time

Vacation Time Guidelines

Transfers from Non-Staff Positions

Full-Time Staff

Part-Time

Changes in Percentage of Effort

Vacation Time for Staff Classified at the Pay Grade 12 Level

Leave of Absence

Military Leave

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Basic Leave Entitlement

Military Family Leave Entitlements

Benefits and Protections

Eligibility Requirements

Definition of Serious Health Condition

Use of Leave

Substitution of Paid Leave for Unpaid Leave

Staff Member Responsibilities

University Responsibilities

Unlawful Acts by Employers

Enforcement

Release Time

Approved Absence

University Service and Development—SAC

Faculty and Staff Development Program

 

Accrual of Sick Time

Regular classified staff members accrue sick time for each pay period worked, irrespective of length of service. The maximum amount of sick time that a regular full or part-time staff member may accrue at any given time is limited to 900 hours (120 days).

Sick time is accrued during the provisional period. Temporary staff members do not accrue or receive sick time regardless of the length of the assignment.

Accrual of Sick Time

Sick time is accrued at the end of the pay period and available to be taken at the start of the following pay period.

New staff members who begin employment on the first day of the pay period will receive the full accrual for the pay period. New staff members who begin employment on any day other than the first day of the pay period will receive a prorated accrual based on the number of days worked between the official start date and the last day of the pay period. For example, if a newly hired full-time staff member begins employment with the University on the 15th day of the month, they would receive a prorated portion (equal to half) of the sick time accrual for the month.

When a staff member terminates from the University, sick time accruals will be prorated for the pay period in which the staff member terminates in accordance with their official date of termination. See Payment of Unused Sick Time section below for eligibility requirements to be paid for accrued sick time.

Full-Time Staff

Regular classified full-time staff members who are assigned to a monthly payroll accrue 7.5 hours (1 day) of sick time per pay period. Regular classified full-time staff members who are assigned to a biweekly payroll accrue 3.462 hours (½ day) of sick time per pay period. In both cases, the maximum annual accrual is 90 hours (12 days) of sick time per year.

Part-Time Staff

Regular classified part-time staff members accrue sick time according to their designated percentage of effort. Sick time accrual rates and annual accrual maximums are based on the following percentage of effort ranges:

Part-Time Percentage of Effort Ranges* 
80% to 99% 60% to 79% 40% to 59% 20% to 39% 0% to 19%
Hours per Month Max Hrs per Year Hours per Month Max Hrs per Year Hours per Month Max Hrs per Year Hours per Month Max Hrs per Year Hours per Month Max Hrs per Year
6.75 81.0 5.25 63.0 3.75 45.0 2.25 27.0 0.75 9.0
  (10.8 days)   (8.4 days)   (6.0 days)   (3.6 days)   (1.2 days)

*Sick time accruals and maximums are based on a University standard work week of 37.5 hrs (7.5 hours per day).  If you are on a University-approved 40-hour work week, contact the Office of Human Resources, Compensation Department for more information regarding specific sick time accruals and maximums.

Usage of Sick Time

Sick time may be used only for health reasons, family care obligations, and other conditions that have a bearing on physical and mental welfare. Sick time may be taken for purposes of a family care obligation only for an obligation caused by a physical or mental health condition of a family member, or if care for a dependent family member is necessitated by the closure or delayed start of a care facility or school because of severe weather conditions. Family members are defined as those for whom leave may be taken under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which include a spouse, parent, or child (child means a biological, adopted, or foster child, a stepchild, a legal ward, or a child of a person standing in loco parentis, who is either under age 18, or age 18 or older and “incapable of self-care” as defined pursuant to FMLA regulations).

Supervisors or departmental administrators may request a physician’s certification or other official verification of the reasons for taking sick time, particularly in cases of chronic, patterned, or long-term absence. In addition, staff members may be disciplined if more sick time is taken than entitled to or in cases of excessive unscheduled absences or other egregious use of sick time. Sick time will be accrued in hours and should be documented as taken in hours; however all staff are encouraged to take sick time in no less than half day increments (example: 3.75 hrs). In all instances, pay should be adjusted when more sick days are taken than have been accrued.

If sick time usage extends beyond three consecutive work days, staff members may be required to apply for leave under FMLA, and, in cases where the absence is due to the staff member’s own health condition, provide a fitness for duty certification to their supervisor or departmental administrator upon return to work. The University may, when appropriate, designate the leave as FMLA leave. See Policy 07-07-02.

Sick Leave

A sick leave totaling no more than 120 working days may be granted for health-related reasons. Your position is guaranteed for no more than 60 working days, absent other legal considerations. When you request a sick leave, you must submit to your department and the Employee Relations Department of the Office of Human Resources a physician’s statement or similar verification of physical condition or circumstances. This statement should include the nature of the condition or problem that prevents you from performing your duties and an anticipated date of return. The University may, when appropriate, designate the leave as FMLA leave. See Policy 07-07-02.

While you are on sick leave, you are paid for the days you have accrued as sick time, and may also elect to be paid for accrued vacation and for compensatory time accrued in the current or preceding pay period. You do not accrue paid vacation or sick time while on sick leave, after your last day at work. At least five days prior to the date when you are scheduled to return to work, you must provide a physician’s statement or similar verification of your suitability to perform your normal duties, including any restrictions. This statement is provided to your departmental administrator.

If your position is not held open by the department beyond 60 working days, the Recruiting and Client Services Department of the Office of Human Resources will attempt to place you in a similar position upon the expiration of the leave. However, such placement cannot be guaranteed. In all cases, the University has no liability for either salary or benefits until you are re-employed.

Payment of Accrued but Unused Sick Time

Staff members may receive payment for unused sick time only if certain age and service criteria are fulfilled. If a staff member has reached 60 years of age or above and has a minimum 10 years of service or is at least 55 years of age and has a minimum of 25 years of service at the time of separation from service, he/she will receive a payment based upon the amount of unused sick time accrued. The payment will be equal to (a) accumulated unused sick time multiplied by one-half of the final base pay daily rate, or (b) $2,500, whichever is less. Payment for unused accrued sick time will be payable in a separate check processed in the subsequent pay period following the termination. For more information, please call the Office of Human Resources, Compensation Department at 412-624-7000 Option 3.

Leave Programs

All leaves of absence must be documented by the department administrator on the Employee Record form for the first available payroll cycle corresponding to your absence from active work, regardless of whether the leave is paid or unpaid.

Bereavement

Regular Full-Time Employees—Regular full-time staff members are eligible for a paid leave of five working days in the event of a miscarriage or stillborn birth, or the death of a spouse, registered domestic partner (see Policy 07-06-08), child, stepchild, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, parent, stepparent, brother, sister, grandparent, grandchild, mother-in-law, father-in-law, or parent of registered domestic partner. Bereavement leave associated with funeral services must be taken within seven calendar days of the death. Any remaining part of bereavement leave necessary to settle family issues associated with the death may be taken at a later time. You are eligible for one day of paid leave to attend the funeral of an aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, cousin, brother-in-law or sister-in-law, or sister or brother of a registered domestic partner.

Regular Part-Time Employees—Regular part-time staff members will receive pay for bereavement leave prorated to the staff member’s percent of effort worked. These days must be taken within seven calendar days of the death as defined above.

Holidays

Regular full-time staff members are granted 10 paid holidays each year:

New Year's Day

Labor Day

Martin Luther King Day

Thanksgiving

Spring Holiday

Day after Thanksgiving

Memorial Day

Day before Christmas

Independence Day

Christmas Day

 

Regular part-time staff members will be paid only for those holidays that fall on regularly scheduled working days. If you are required to work on holidays, separate compensatory arrangements will be made. Temporary staff members are not paid for University holidays, regardless of the length of the assignment.

Personal Time

Regular classified staff members are granted personal time for use within the University’s fiscal year (July 1 through June 30). Personal time must be scheduled in advance with the staff member’s supervisor, according to departmental scheduling practices. Personal time will not carry over to the next fiscal year and will not be paid out at time of termination.

Personal time will be available in hours and should be documented as taken in hours; however, all staff are encouraged to take personal time in no less than half day increments (example: 3.75 hrs). Personal time is available for use, if approved in advance, during the provisional period. Temporary staff members do not accrue or receive personal time regardless of the length of the assignment.

Full-Time Staff

Regular classified full-time staff members are granted 15 hours of personal time (2 days, 7.5 hours each) at the beginning of the fiscal year (July 1).

New full-time staff members that begin employment July through December will receive 15 hours (2 days) of personal time for the fiscal year. If employment begins between January through April, 7.5 hours (1 day) of personal time will be granted for the fiscal year. If employment begins in May through June, no personal time will be granted until the beginning of the new fiscal year.

Part-Time Staff

Regular classified part-time staff members are granted 7.5 hours (1 day) of personal time at the beginning of the fiscal year (July 1). New part-time staff members that begin employment July through December will receive 7.5 hours of personal time (1 day) for the fiscal year. If employment begins between January through April, 3.75 hours (½ day) of personal time will be granted for the fiscal year. If employment begins in May through June, no personal time will be granted until the beginning of the new fiscal year.

Changes to Percentage of Effort within the Fiscal Year

Staff members who transfer from a full-time staff position to a part-time staff position anytime within the fiscal year will have their available personal time balance reduced to 7.5 hours (1 day). If you have less than 7.5 hours available (1 day), the balance will not change.

Staff members who transfer from a part-time position to a full-time position anytime within the fiscal year will have their available personal time balance increased by 7.5 hours (1 day) and will not exceed 15 hours (2 days) maximum.

Winter Recess

During the period between the end of the fall term and the beginning of the spring term, the University announces a recess when some University offices may be closed. The specific recess days are announced in the Official University Academic Calendar.

Jury Duty and Court Witness

When you are called to serve jury duty or subpoenaed as a court witness, you must notify your departmental administrator immediately and provide a copy of the notice or subpoena. Your University pay will not be reduced by the amount of jury duty or court witness pay that you receive.

Accrual of Vacation Time

Regular classified staff members accrue vacation time according to both years of service with the University and full-time or part-time staff assignment category.

Vacation time is accrued during the provisional period. Temporary staff members do not accrue or receive vacation time regardless of the length of the assignment.

Accrual of Vacation Time

Vacation time accruals are determined by the staff member’s official hire date or adjusted service date recognized by the Office of Human Resources at the time of hire.

Vacation time is accrued at the end of the pay period and available to be taken at the start of the following pay period.

New staff members who begin employment on the first day of the pay period will receive the full accrual for the pay period. New staff members who begin employment on any day other than the first day of the pay period will receive a prorated accrual based on the number of days worked between the official start date and the last day of the pay period. For example, if a newly hired full-time staff member begins employment with the University on the 15th day of the month, they would receive a prorated portion (equal to half) of the vacation accrual for the month.

When a staff member terminates from the University, vacation accruals will be prorated for the pay period in which the staff member terminates in accordance with their official date of termination. Payment for any unused accrued vacation time will be payable in a separate check processed in the subsequent pay period following the termination.

Vacation Time Guidelines

Vacation cannot be taken before it is accrued and must be requested and approved in advance by the staff member’s supervisor in accordance with established departmental scheduling guidelines. Vacation time will be accrued in hours thus should be taken in hours; however, all staff are encouraged to take vacation time in no less than half-day increments (example: 3.75 hrs).

Once a staff member reaches the maximum accumulation of vacation hours, they will not accrue additional vacation hours until hours are taken and the vacation balance falls below the maximum allowed. No retroactive credit will be granted for vacation time not accumulated as a result of reaching the vacation maximum.

Transfers from Non-Staff Positions

Employees who have transferred into a staff position from a non-staff position may be eligible to transfer previous years of service to count towards staff vacation accrual eligibility. Please reference the Staff Reemployment Policy or contact the Office of Human Resources, Compensation Department at 412-624-8150 for more information regarding non-staff job types that are eligible to count towards classified staff years of service.

Full-Time Staff

Regular full-time staff vacation accruals are determined by the staff member’s years of service with the University:

 

Full-Time Vacation Accruals Per Month

 

Full-Time Vacation Accruals Max Per Year

Years of Service

 

Accrual in HOURS

 

Accrual in DAYS

 

Max in HOURS

 

Max in DAYS

 

0-5 years

 

6.25 hrs

 

0.833 days

 

75.0 hrs

 

10 days

 

6-10 years

 

9.375 hrs

 

1.25 days

 

112.5 hrs

 

15 days

 

11-20 years

 

12.5 hrs

 

1.667 days

 

150.0 hrs

 

20 days

 

21 or more years

 

15.625 hrs

 

2.083 days

 

187.5 hrs

 

25 days

 

Vacation accruals and maximums are based on a University standard work week of 37.5 hrs (7.5 hours per day). If you are on a University-approved 40-hour work week, contact the Office of Human Resources, Compensation Department for more information regarding specific vacation accruals and maximums.

Part-Time

Regular part-time vacation time accrual rates are based on the following percentage of effort ranges. Vacation time accruals are determined by years of service with the University and designated percentage of effort:

Part-Time Vacation Accruals - Percentage of Effort Ranges
Years of Service 80% to 99% 60 to 79% 40 to 59% 20% to 39% 0% to 19%
Hrs per Month Max Hrs per year Hrs per Month Max Hrs per year Hrs per Month Hrs per Month Hrs per Month Hrs per Month Hrs per Month Hrs per Month
0-5 years 5.625 67.5 4.375 52.5 3.125 37.5 1.875 22.5 0.625 7.5
6 to 10 years 8.438 101.25 6.563 78.75 4.688 56.25 2.813 33.75 0.938 11.25
11 to 20 years 11.250 135.0 8.750 105.0 6.250 75.0 3.750 45.0 1.250 15.0
21 or more years 14.063 168.75 10.938 131.25 7.813 93.75 4.688 56.25 1.563 18.75

 

Changes in Percentage of Effort

If a staff member’s percentage of effort changes and their accrued vacation balance exceeds the maximum of the new range, the difference between the accrued vacation balance and the maximum of the new range will be paid in the subsequent pay period following the change.

Vacation Time for Staff Classified at the Pay Grade 12 Level

Staff members who hold positions classified in Pay Grade 12 will accrue vacation time at the rate of 150 hours (or 20 days) per year. Once a staff member with a position classified in Pay Grade 12 completes 20 years of service with the University, the vacation accrual rate will increase to 187.5 hours (or 25 days) per year.

Leave of Absence

You may request general leaves of absence without pay. If granted, these leaves may not exceed 120 working days. You may not use accrued paid vacation days to extend the length of the leave beyond 120 days. However, accrued vacation days may be used during the leave to receive pay. Any such arrangements must be approved by the departmental administrator.

To initiate a request for an unpaid leave, you must first discuss the reasons for requesting a leave with your departmental administrator. The departmental administrator will discuss the circumstances with the Employee Relations Department of the Office of Human Resources. If it is determined that a leave is warranted, you will be notified by your departmental administrator. The University may, when appropriate, designate a leave as a Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave.

While on leave, you do not accrue vacation or sick time. Should you fail to return from a leave at the agreed-upon time, you are considered to have voluntarily resigned and lose all employment rights. Insurance benefits are not suspended while you are on a leave of absence. However, the cost of any benefits will be borne by you in the same manner as prior to the leave. Any arrangements for continuance of benefits must be made prior to the leave by contacting the Benefits Department of the Office of Human Resources.

Military Leave

The University grants military leave and re-employment rights to eligible staff, pursuant to applicable federal and state law.

For more information, contact the Employee Relations Department of the Office of Human Resources.

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Basic Leave Entitlement

In accordance with the requirements of the Family and Medical Leave Act, the University of Pittsburgh provides up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to eligible staff members for the following reasons:

  • For incapacity due to pregnancy, prenatal medical care or childbirth;
  • To care for the staff member’s child after birth, or placement for adoption or foster care;
  • To care for the staff member’s spouse, son or daughter, or parent who has a serious health condition; or
  • For a serious health condition that makes the staff member unable to perform the staff member’s job

Military Family Leave Entitlements

Eligible staff members whose spouse, son, daughter, or parent is on covered active duty or called to covered active duty status may use their 12-week leave entitlement to address certain qualifying exigencies. Qualifying exigencies may include attending certain military events, arranging for alternative childcare, addressing certain financial and legal arrangements, attending certain counseling sessions, and attending post-deployment reintegration briefings.

FMLA also includes a special leave entitlement that permits eligible staff members to take up to 26 weeks of leave to care for a covered servicemember during a single 12-month period. A covered servicemember is: (1) a current member of the Armed Forces, including a member of the National Guard or Reserves, who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation or therapy, is otherwise in outpatient status, or is otherwise on the temporary disability retired list, for a serious injury or illness*; or (2) a veteran who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable at any time during the five-year period prior to the first date the eligible staff member takes FMLA leave to care for the covered veteran, and who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy for a serious injury or illness.*

* The FMLA definitions of “serious injury or illness” for current servicemembers and veterans are distinct from the FMLA definition of “serious health condition”.

Benefits and Protections

During FMLA leave, the University must maintain the staff member’s health coverage under any “group health plan” on the same terms as if the staff member had continued to work. Upon return from FMLA leave, staff members must be restored to their original or equivalent positions with equivalent pay, benefits, and other employment terms.

Use of FMLA leave cannot result in the loss of any employment benefit that accrued prior to the start of a staff member’s leave.

Eligibility Requirements

Staff members are eligible if they have worked for the University for at least one year, and for 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months.

Definition of Serious Health Condition

A serious health condition is an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves either an overnight stay in a medical care facility, or continuing treatment by a health care provider for a condition that either prevents the staff member from performing the functions of the staff member’s job, or prevents the qualified family member from participating in school or other daily activities.

Subject to certain conditions, the continuing treatment requirement may be met by a period of incapacity of more than 3 consecutive calendar days combined with at least two visits to a health care provider or one visit and a regimen of continuing treatment, or incapacity due to pregnancy, or incapacity due to a chronic condition. Other conditions may meet the definition of continuing treatment.

Use of Leave

A staff member does not need to use this leave entitlement in one block. Leave can be taken intermittently or on a reduced leave schedule when medically necessary. Staff members must make reasonable efforts to schedule leave for planned medical treatment so as not to unduly disrupt the University’s operations. Leave due to qualifying exigencies may also be taken on an intermittent basis.

Substitution of Paid Leave for Unpaid Leave

The University requires the use of accrued paid leave while taking FMLA leave. Staff members must use up to 60 sick days, and may elect to use vacation days once sick days are exhausted or 60 have been used.

Staff Member Responsibilities

Staff members must provide 30 days’ advance notice of the need to take FMLA leave when the need is foreseeable. When 30 days’ notice is not possible, the staff member must provide notice as soon as practicable and generally must comply with a school or department’s normal call-off procedures.

Staff members must provide sufficient information to the University’s FMLA Third Party Administrator for the University to determine if the leave may qualify for FMLA protection and concerning the anticipated timing and duration of the leave. Sufficient information may include that the staff member is unable to perform job functions, the family member is unable to perform daily activities, the need for hospitalization or continuing treatment by a health care provider, or circumstances supporting the need for military family leave. Staff members also must inform their supervisor if the requested leave is for a reason for which FMLA leave was previously taken or certified. Staff members also may be required to provide a certification and periodic recertification supporting the need for leave.

University Responsibilities

The University must inform staff members requesting leave whether they are eligible under FMLA. If they are, the notice must specify any additional information required as well as the staff members’ rights and responsibilities. If they are not eligible, the University must provide a reason for the ineligibility.

The University must inform staff members if leave will be designated as FMLA-protected and the amount of leave counted against the staff member’s leave entitlement. If the University determines that the leave is not FMLA-protected, the employer must notify the staff member. The University complies with these responsibilities through its third party administrator.

Unlawful Acts by Employers

FMLA makes it unlawful for any employer to:

  • Interfere with, restrain, or deny the exercise of any right provided under FMLA;
  • Discharge or discriminate against any person for opposing any practice made unlawful by FMLA or for involvement in any proceeding under or relating to FMLA.

Enforcement

Any employee may file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor or may bring a private lawsuit against an employer.

FMLA does not affect any Federal or State law prohibiting discrimination or supersede any State or local law or collective bargaining agreement that provides greater family or medical leave rights.

FMLA section 109 (29 U.S.C. § 2619) requires FMLA covered employers to post the text of this notice. Regulations 29 C.F.R. § 825.300(a) may require additional disclosures.

For more detailed information, contact the Employee Relations Department of Human Resources and see Policy and Procedure 07-07-02.

Release Time

Career-Related Development Workshops/Seminars - Release time for career-related development programs may not exceed eight hours per term. Additional time for attendance at such programs—which would have to be otherwise accounted for (e.g., personal days, compensatory time, etc.)—may be granted at the discretion of the department. Supervisors will ordinarily grant release time for regular full-time and regular part-time staff members at all levels to attend pertinent noncredit career and/or personal development courses and workshops administered through the Office of Human Resources. Your supervisor must sign the Faculty and Staff Development Program Registration form to authorize you to attend the sponsored workshops/seminars. Temporary full-time and temporary part-time staff members are not eligible for release time.

Approved Absence

There may be rare occasions when it is necessary for a regular classified staff member to be absent from work due to emergency or other unforeseen circumstances. In these cases, it may not be appropriate to deduct hours from the staff member’s vacation, personal or sick time accrual balances. These absences should be designated as Approved Absences on the staff time record and must have the approval of the staff member’s immediate supervisor. Approved Absences with supervisory approval may be used for absences that are weather related, work facility emergencies or workweek adjustments (such as approved early closures) and must be pre-approved by the department and Responsibility Center leader. Approved Absences do not count as hours worked for purposes of calculating compensatory and overtime (non-exempt staff only). Questions regarding the use of Approved Absences should be directed to your direct supervisor or the Office of Human Resources, Compensation Department at 412-624-7000 Option 3.

University Service and Development—SAC

All regular full-time and regular part-time staff members are encouraged to attend Staff Association Council (SAC) Spring and Fall Assembly Meetings or other special SAC events. Although release time ordinarily is granted for these meetings or events, it should be noted that release time is granted at the discretion of the staff employee’s supervisor. It is essential that the work areas remain operational during any SAC event.

SAC elected and/or appointed members, including officers and chairs, will be granted two hours per month to attend regularly scheduled SAC meetings.

  • SAC officers and chairs will be granted an additional two hours per month to attend the Steering Committee meeting each month as well as any additional period of time required to fulfill the objectives of their elected/appointed position(s), with prior notification and mutual consent of their respective supervisors.
  • Individual SAC elected and/or appointed members will be granted additional release time with written notification to and permission from the appropriate supervisor to attend related University committee meetings as they occur, provided total release time for SAC or SAC-related activities does not exceed six hours per month.
  • Temporary full-time and temporary part-time staff members are not eligible for release time.

Note: In September of each year, the Office of Human Resources will notify immediate supervisors of the responsibilities of newly elected and/or appointed SAC members. A copy of these guidelines will be included for reference by the respective department management.

Faculty and Staff Development Program

You are encouraged to attend workshops listed in the Faculty and Staff Development Program. Departments are also encouraged to arrange for staff members who work together to participate in training together. A variety of workshops is offered by the Office of Human Resources to you and/or your department.

Topics Include:

  • Professional Development
  • Personal Development
  • Career Development
  • Health and Safety
  • Financial Planning
  • Human Resources Development Track
  • University Business and Financial Services for Supervisors

 

 

Brochures describing workshops and registration information are mailed to all staff.

Further information on workshops may be accessed at www.hr.pitt.edu/training-development/faculty-st or by calling 412-624-8046.