1.25 Family and Medical Leave Policy
The purpose of the Family and Medical Leave Regulation is to comply with the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) and the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008. Additional information may be obtained from the Human Resources Department.
Employees who have been employed by the College for at least twelve months prior to the date leave is to commence, who have worked at least 1,250 hours over the previous twelve months, and who work at a location where fifty or more employees are employed by the College within 75 miles, are eligible for unpaid leave under FMLA. A break in service, if not due to military service, cannot exceed seven years for prior employment to count toward the twelve-month requirement.
Nothing in these regulations shall be construed to entitle any employee to accrue any seniority or employment benefits during any period of leave or any right, benefit, or position of employment other than any right, benefit, or position to which the employee would have been entitled had the employee not taken FMLA leave.
A. Leave Entitlement
Eligible employees are entitled up to twelve weeks (or 26 weeks where specified) of unpaid family or medical leave during a twelve-month period for any of the following:
- The birth of a child of the employee;
- The placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care;
- A serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform the functions of the employee's position;
- In order to care for any member of the employee's immediate family (parents, legal guardians or surrogates, grandparents, grandchildren, siblings, spouse, children, spouse's parents, or spouse's legal guardians or surrogates, or any dependent living with the employee) if such family member has a serious health condition. Spouses employed by the College are jointly entitled to a combined total of twelve work weeks of family leave for the birth of a child, placement of a child for adoption or foster care, or to care for a family member parent who has a serious health condition.
- To care up to 26 weeks for a spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin who is a covered service member for a serious injury or illness incurred while on active duty or existed before active duty and was aggravated while on active duty. Spouses employed by the College are jointly entitled to a combined total of 26 weeks to care for a service member.
- A "qualifying exigency" arising out of the employee's spouse, son, daughter, or parent being on active duty or having been notified of an impending call or order to active duty in the Armed Forces for deployment to a foreign country. Up to 12 weeks of leave is available for a "qualifying exigency." A "qualifying exigency" is defined as:
- short-notice deployment,
- military events and related activities,
- childcare and school activities,
- financial and legal arrangements,
- rest and recuperation,
- post-deployment activities, and
- additional qualifying activities which arise out of active duty that are agreed upon by the College and the employee.
Leave for birth of a child or placement of a child for adoption or foster care must conclude within twelve months of the birth or the placement. An employee is entitled to twelve weeks of FMLA leave in any twelve-month period. The twelve-month period is measured backwards from the date an employee uses any FMLA leave. Each time an employee takes FMLA leave, the remaining leave entitlement would be any balance of the twelve weeks which has not been used during the twelve-month period.
In some cases, intermittent leave or leave on a reduced work schedule is available. This is leave which is taken in blocks of time or by reducing a normal weekly or daily work schedule. Such leave is available if medically necessary to care for a family member who has a serious health condition or because the employee has a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to work. Requests for intermittent leave will be handled on a case-by-case basis depending on the nature of the request and the College's operational needs.
B. Designation of Paid Leave
Sick leave is required to be used concurrently with FMLA leave taken for any purpose that otherwise qualifies for sick leave under Policy 1.18 Sick Leave. Accrued vacation/personal/bonus or any other authorized leave is required to be used concurrently with any FMLA leave. Once an employee's leave is exhausted, any remaining FMLA leave is unpaid.
C. Maintenance of Health Benefits
During FMLA leave, the College will maintain the employee's health coverage under any group health plan on the same terms as if the employee had continued to work.
The employee must continue to pay the cost of dependent group health benefit premiums. The payment of the dependent group health premiums should be arranged with Human Resources prior to taking the first day of FMLA leave. Failure of the employee to pay those premiums within 30 days of the due date may result in termination of group health coverage for the dependent(s).
The College is generally entitled to recover all premiums paid by the College to maintain health coverage for employees who fail to return to work after FMLA leave. An employee must return to work for 30 days in order to avoid being obligated to repay such amounts. An employee will not have to repay such amounts if the failure to return to work is due to circumstances beyond the control of the employee.
D. Job Restoration
Subject to certain exceptions (such as when the employee would not otherwise have been employed at the time reinstatement is requested, or the employee is within the category of employees where restoration would cause substantial and grievous economic injury to the College) employees who take FMLA leave are entitled to be reinstated to their original job or to an equivalent job with equivalent pay, benefits, and other employment terms and conditions.
Nothing in these regulations shall be construed to entitle any restored employee to accrue any seniority or employment benefits during any period of leave or any right, benefit, or position of employment other than any right, benefit, or position to which the employee would have been entitled had the employee not taken the leave.
E. Maintenance of Other Benefits
In order to restore any benefit, other than group health benefits, provided by insurance to the employee without the employee having to re-qualify for such benefits upon his/her return from leave, the College may find it necessary for premiums for such insurance to be paid continuously during the unpaid leave period to avoid a lapse of coverage. The College shall be entitled to recover any such payments to maintain coverage of benefits during the employee's unpaid leave, whether or not the employee returns from leave, unless the employee does not return to work due to circumstances beyond the control of the employee.
Changes approved by the Board of Trustees on May 5, 2004; May 6, 2020
Changes from Human Resources on January 5, 2010
Changes approved by Cabinet on May 18, 2009; March 12, 2007