501 Leaves of Absence, All Staff
In addition to vacations, sick leave, etc., which are discussed in other sections of this manual, there are other types of absence approved by the University. Such absences may be with or without pay.
6. Paid Paternity Leave [update Feb 2006]
8. a) Unpaid Parental Leave [update Sep 2005]
9. Family Responsibility Time [update Sep 2002]
10. Temporary Reduction of Workload and Compensation [update Sep 2002]
11. Bereavement Leave [update Mar 2006]
15. Self-funded Leave [update Feb 2000, error fix Dec 2001, update Jan 2003]
16. Emergency Leave [new Sep 2001, update Nov 2001]
A leave of absence may be granted by the University for good reason, except for permanent alternative employment, provided such absence does not disrupt normal University operations. Factors to be considered in granting such leave include, but are not limited to, the following:
- a) employee's length of service
b) period of leave request
c) reason for the leave
d) replacement required
e) replacement available permit?
f) cost-benefit to University
g) benefits to the employee
h) professional development
i) operational needs
Unless otherwise provided, authority to grant leaves of absence is vested in Deans, Directors, or Department Heads.
Listed below are types of leaves of absence approved by the University. This list is not intended to be comprehensive.
Absence on jury duty or as a subpoenaed witness is an excused absence and the University agrees to pay an employee who is required to serve as a juror or witness, the difference between the regular pay they would have received for work which they were scheduled to perform during the period of their absence and the amount received by them as a juror. It shall be the responsibility of the employee to provide proof of the period served as a juror and the amount paid to them for such services. In addition, an employee who is subpoenaed as a witness shall receive full regular pay for such absence, provided the litigation was not initiated by the employee. Employees who serve as a juror shall receive their full regular pay, provided they submit the cheque received for such services to their department. The department will then submit the cheque with a Revenue Remittance Voucher to Revenue Control.
The University will grant a leave of absence with pay of up to two (2) weeks duration for the purposes of military service and will compensate the employee for whatever difference exists between the military pay they received, as evidenced by a statement from the proper authority, and their normal University wages or salary. During their absence the employee's normal wages or salary will continue and it will be their responsibility to reimburse the University that part of their military pay that is less than their regular University pay.
Military service of longer than two (2) weeks duration may be allowed, but the period of the leave of absence in excess of two (2) weeks will be without pay.
Members of the University are free to participate in public life without any impediment from the University. A University employee seeking election to public office shall be entitled to leave of absence without pay as follows:
- i) for election to either the Parliament of Canada or the Legislature of Ontario, during the period from official filing of nomination to seven consecutive days after the election,
ii) for election to the position of Mayor for seven consecutive days prior to election day and three days thereafter.
Should an employee's candidature for either the Federal Parliament or Provincial Legislature be successful, they shall be considered as being on leave of absence without pay from the date of their election to the date of the next Federal or Provincial (as the case may be) general election. Should they be reelected at that general election, it is expected that they would formally resign from the University's employ. Should the employee not stand for reelection or should the employee be defeated, they must return to work at the University within seven days of election day or forfeit their right to do so.
A University employee on leave of absence without pay who is elected to either the Parliament of Canada or the Legislature of Ontario, and who is subsequently appointed a Minister of the Crown must resign their University post immediately upon assuming the official responsibility of their ministerial post. An employee elected Mayor may be granted leave of absence for a period of up to two years without salary or may remain on the staff of the University for as long as they occupy the position provided they can continue to do full justice to their job at the University. Alternatively, they may remain on pay but with an appropriate reduction in pay according to the amount of time that must be devoted to the mayoral duties involved. An employee elected Alderman or School Trustee may be granted leave of absence to attend Council or Board meetings. A salary reduction commensurate with the time devoted to attendance at meetings will be made.
1. Purpose of Paid Parental Leave:
Paid parental leave is offered to accommodate the special needs of regular full-time University employees who bear children and who remain at home to care for children during the post-delivery and/or post-adoption period. It is expected that all employees who take paid parental leave will return to employment at the University of Guelph following such leave.
2. Eligibility for Paid Parental Leave:
(a) Natural parents and adoptive parents who are regular full-time University employees having primary care of the child or children, will be eligible to receive seventeen (17) weeks of normally continuous paid parental leave per pregnancy or placement.
(b) The employee shall give at least two (2) weeks written notice to her or his supervisor of the intent to commence paid parental leave.
(c) Employees must apply for E.I. benefits before supplementary income from the University becomes payable. To be eligible for paid parental leave, employees must provide appropriate documentation of the birth or adoption of a child and of the receipt of E.I. maternity or parental leave benefits to Human Resources. An employee disentitled or disqualified from receiving E.I. maternity or parental benefits is not eligible to receive supplementary benefits from the University. Exceptions to this rule will be made for those employees who are denied E.I. maternity or parental leave benefits only because they have not completed the six hundred (600) hours in the previous fifty-two (52) weeks of employment or since the employee's last claim required for E.I. benefit eligibility.
3. Terms of Paid Parental Leave:
(a) Eligible employees will receive 95% of normal salary less applicable Employment Insurance (E.I.) maternity or parental benefits for a maximum period of seventeen (17) weeks from the commencement of the leave. An employee who receives paid parental leave benefits must not receive other earnings or payments, such that his or her combined income (including E.I. maternity leave benefits, supplementary payments from the University and other earnings) exceeds 95% of normal weekly earnings.
E.I. does not provide benefits for the first two weeks of Paid Parental/Adoption Leave. However, the University provides eligible employees with 95% of their normal salary during this period. For the remaining 15 weeks of your Paid Parental/Adoption Leave, eligible employees receive 95% of their normal salary less applicable E.I. maternity or parental benefits.
As indicated above, an employee must be receiving E.I. benefits to qualify for supplementary payments from the University. The processing of an E.I. application may take as long as one month. However, during this processing period, the University will advance payments based on the assumption that the employee will be declared eligible to receive E.I. benefits. In the event that an employee does not demonstrate receipt of E.I. benefits to Human Resources within six weeks of commencing the leave, however, advance payments will be automatically terminated, and the employee will be required to repay the University for all payments received in association with this leave.
(b) No employee may claim any other form of supplementary benefit during the period of leave.
(c) The employee proceeding on paid parental leave shall not forfeit any accrued employment benefits save for the right to accrue sick leave credits during the period of absence. Seniority shall continue to accrue for employees taking paid parental leave.
(d) While on paid parental leave, the employee will continue to receive University benefits on a normal cost sharing arrangement.
(e) For the purposes of promotion, any period of paid parental leave shall be considered as a period of service with the University. An employee who has taken a paid parental leave shall remain eligible for merit increases based on her or his level of performance while in full-time employment.
(f) An employee taking paid parental leave shall not be disadvantaged. She or he will return to the same or an equivalent position without loss of salary or seniority.
(g) Paid parental leave may be voluntarily shorter than the previously arranged period, providing the employee advises the University of his or her intention to return to work at least two (2) weeks prior to the intended date of return.
(h) If the Supervisor/Chair is not certain of a natural mother's physical ability to return to and perform her duties, they may request medical certification of such ability.
(i) In cases where both parents are employed by the University on a regular full-time basis, only one Paid Parental/Adoption Leave will be allowed for the same birth or adoption.
1. Purpose of Paid Paternity Leave
A regular full-time employee who is a natural or adoptive father or same-sex parent is entitled to five (5) days of paid paternity leave associated with a birth or adoption. Such leave will normally be taken within thirty (30) days of the birth or adoption.
1. An employee shall be granted three (3) days of paid leave for the purpose of adopting a child and/or time off as per existing legislation.
2. In addition, the principles outlined in the Paid Parental Leave policy may apply equally in the cases of adoption. However, the granting of such leave and salary benefit will only apply to recipients of E.I. parental leave benefits.
1. Purpose of Unpaid Parental Leave
Unpaid parental leave is offered to accommodate regular full-time employees who require more time than that provided as paid parental leave to care for newborn or newly-adopted children. It is expected that all employees will return to employment at the University of Guelph following unpaid parental leave.
2. Eligibility for Unpaid Parental Leave
On receipt of appropriate documentation of the birth or adoption of a child, the University will grant thirty-five (35)* weeks of unpaid parental leave per pregnancy or placement to all regular full-time employees. The leave will normally be continuous with the paid parental leave. It will begin no later than 52 weeks after the child comes into parental care.
This leave is available to both parents and, when added to the paid parental leave period, would enable the parents themselves to provide the first 89 consecutive weeks of care for their child or children. (This is comprised of 17 weeks of Paid Parental Leave for the primary care giver as outlined above in section 5 of this policy, plus 35 weeks of Unpaid Parental Leave for the birth mother as per the Employment Standards Act, plus 37* weeks of Unpaid Parental Leave for the other parent.) Employees would contact the Employment Insurance [E.I.] office to determine their eligibility for benefits during this unpaid leave period.
3. Terms of Unpaid Parental Leave
(a) The employee proceeding on unpaid parental leave shall not forfeit any accrued employment benefits save for the right to accrue sick leave credits during the period of absence. Seniority shall continue to accrue for employees taking unpaid parental leave.
(b) Participation in the various University employment benefit schemes may be continued while an employee is on unpaid parental leave on a normal cost-sharing arrangement.
(c) For the purposes of promotion, any period of unpaid parental leave shall be considered as a period of service with the University. An employee who has taken an unpaid parental leave shall remain eligible for merit increases based on his or her level of performance while in full-time employment.
(d) An employee taking an unpaid parental leave shall not be disadvantaged. She or he will return to the same or an equivalent position without loss of salary or seniority.
A pregnant employee hired at least 13 weeks before her due date is entitled to seventeen (17) weeks unpaid pregnancy leave.
All new parents hired at least 13 weeks before the commencement of Parental Leave, are entitled to up to 35 or 37 weeks of unpaid parental leave. Birth mothers who take pregnancy leave are entitled to take up to 35 weeks of parental leave. All other new parents are entitled to take up to 37 weeks of parental leave. This leave must commence within fifty-two (52) weeks of the birth or adoption.
"Parent" includes adoptive parents, as well as "a person in a relationship of some permanence with the natural mother or father of the child who intends to treat the child as his or her own".
Normal benefit cost-sharing shall continue for pension, life insurance, major medical and dental, throughout both pregnancy and parental leave.
Departments must ensure a request for leave of absence form is completed and submitted with the appropriate data form to Salary Administration to ensure benefit cost-sharing continues. Employees must provide two (2) weeks notice of the date the leave will begin and four (4) weeks notice of the date the leave is to end.
Any parent commencing a leave is entitled to return to the same or an equivalent position after the leave. Any employee whose predetermined contract expired while on leave may not be entitled to return to a job.
The provision of family responsibility time, separate from sick leave and paid personal leave, is intended to assist employees with balancing their family and work responsibilities. Sick leave should be used only to provide employees with income during periods of their own illness.
1. The operational requirements of the University must be met. However, it is recognized that every effort will be required to accommodate requests for family responsibility time (FRT).
2. Seven (7) days at any given time of (FRT) will be provided to all regular full-time employees. FRT may be used in amounts not less than one (1) hour, will be requested in advance if possible, and will be granted unless precluded by operational requirements.
3. FRT will be available on a "borrow" basis, to be repaid by mutual agreement between employee and supervisor. FRT can be repaid by, for example, working shortened lunch breaks, starting earlier or working late. The minimum arrangement for re-payment of FRT must be in segments of no less than .50 hour.
4. Employees may draw FRT repetitively provided they do not exceed seven (7) days owing at any given time. Time owing must be cleared by March 1st of the following year.
5. In addition to family responsibility time, employees may apply for an unpaid leave of absence, under the terms of Human Resources Manual Policy 501 to accommodate their family responsibilities.
The operational requirements of the University must be met. However, it is recognized that effort will be required to accommodate requests for temporary reduction of workload and compensation.
1. Eligibility and Application Procedure
(a) Every regular full-time employee is eligible to request a temporary reduction in workload and compensation at any time during his/her career.
(b) Any eligible employee may submit a written request for a temporary reduction in workload and compensation to his or her immediate supervisor and to the relevant Department Chair or Director.
(c) An employee whose request for a reduction in workload and compensation is denied may grieve the decision according to the collective agreement grievance procedure or Human Resources Policy 503, as applicable.
2. Terms of Reduction in Workload and Compensation
(a) An employee who is granted a temporary reduction of workload shall enter into an agreement with the University which specifies the degree of reduction in both weekly workload and compensation (to be not more than 50%) and its duration.
(b) Regular full-time employees who are granted a temporary reduction of workload will continue to be eligible for benefit cost-sharing, as though they were not on a reduced workload.
(c) The length of the probationary period shall be extended, on a prorated basis, if a reduced workload appointment is taken up by a probationary employee.
(d) Employees who accept a reduction in workload and compensation shall remain eligible for merit increases.
(e) At the end of the period of reduced workload, an employee shall have the right to return to a position the same as or equivalent to that which preceded the period of reduced workload.
Upon request, the University will grant leave with pay for up to five (5) consecutive scheduled work-days (at the time of the death) and for those employees whose schedule is other than Monday to Friday, they will receive 35; 37.5 or 40 hours off (at the time of the death) in the event of a death in the employee's immediate family. Immediate family shall mean parent; step parent; spouse; common-law spouse (including same-sex partner); child; step child; brother; sister; step brother; step sister. Where the funeral occurs outside the province, the employee will be provided with a total of one (1) additional day for the purpose of traveling to and from the funeral (ie. 6 days maximum).
Upon request, the University will grant leave with pay for up to three (3) consecutive scheduled work-days (at the time of the death) and for those employees whose schedule is other than Monday to Friday, they will receive 21, 22.5 or 24 hours off (at the time of the death) in the event of a death in the employee's family. Family shall mean grandparent; grandchild; mother-in-law; father-in-law; sister-in-law; brother-in-law; son-in-law; daughter-in-law; ward. Where the funeral occurs outside the province, the employee will be provided with a total of one (1) additional day for the purpose of traveling to and from the funeral (ie. 4 day maximum).
The period of three or five working days prescribed above must include the day of the funeral. Bereavement leave may be lengthened by use of vacation leave, Family Responsibility Time, Paid Personal Leave, or leave of absence without pay.
Time off for attendance at the funeral of a deceased employee (other than a relative as mentioned above) is allowable at the discretion of the supervisor.
An employee whose vacation is interrupted because of a bereavement as outlined above, will have the appropriate number of vacation days (5, immediate family member, or 3 family member) reinstated.
Examination Leave may only be granted with pay to an employee writing an examination for courses taken at the direction of the University (see Policy 401.1) during working hours but normally only a half day at a time. Immediate supervisors are authorized to grant such leave.
Long term disability leave is granted to all eligible employees who have exhausted their sick leave credits and who are off work sick for ninety (90) consecutive days from the date last worked. Further details relative to premium costs and benefits are available from the Benefits section of Human Resources and in Policy 601.
a) Commencing January 1st of each year, regular full-time employees shall be allowed for “good reason” up to three days of PPL annually, which must be approved and granted by their supervisor, subject to operational requirements. Employees paid for a 37.5 hour work week will receive 22.5 hours of PPL per year, while those paid for a 40 hour work week will receive 24 hours of PPL annually.
b) Temporary full-time Exempt employees who have been continuously employed in excess of thirty-six months without a break in employment will be entitled to one day of PPL per year.
Temporary full-time Food Service Employee Association members who have completed four (4) consecutive eight (8) month terms, will be entitled to one (1) day of PPL per year (January - December).
Note: Until the Temporary Full-time Food Service employee meets the threshold outlined above, and providing they are appointed for greater than six (6) months, they will be provided with one (1) day of PPL for the sole purpose of observing obligatory holy days, as per the current H.R. policy.
2. PPL does not accrue from one calendar year to another.
3. Each request for PPL must be made in writing, shall indicate the reason for the request, and normally must be submitted for approval to the employee’s supervisor at least five working days in advance, except in cases of emergency (e.g. snowstorms). Where the employee is requesting time off in cases of emergency, time off will be granted without pay. The supervisor will discuss the situation with the Department Chair/Head and a decision will be made as to whether or not time is to be charged against PPL. Requests which would be charged against other forms of leave (e.g. sick-leave, family responsibility time, vacation, will not be approved as PPL).
4. Employees will not be allowed to use PPL for purposes of extending vacations, or for the day prior to or following a paid holiday.
5. PPL may not be taken in units of less than one hour.
6. Each department is required to maintain records of PPL usage for eligible employees. PPL should be reported as leave of absence with pay when the total time off accumulates to one half day or more. (Leave of absence with pay should not be reported in blocks of less than one half day.)
Guidelines on the interpretation of “Good Reason”
The following guidelines are intended to assist supervisors in applying the PPL policy. Each request for PPL should be considered by the supervisor on a case by case basis, taking into consideration operational requirements of the department, the employee’s needs, and the duty to accommodate the observance of obligatory religious holy days.
The intent of the policy is to permit time off for extraordinary circumstances which arise from time to time in employee’s personal lives, and to assist with the observance of obligatory religious holy days. The following “good reasons” for granting PPL are examples only and not intended as an inclusive list:
- To observe obligatory religious holy days.
- Attendance at a funeral for a person who is not specifically covered by collective agreement language or the Bereavement Leave Policy, (e.g. coworker, cousin, uncle, etc.).
- To extend a period of bereavement leave beyond the five or three days provided for by collective agreement or the Bereavement Leave Policy.
- An emergency resulting from a natural disaster. This may include an unusual or severe storm condition.
- An emergency situation at home. This may include fire, flood, burst water heaters, broken furnaces during winter months, and gas leaks.
- Emergency child or elder care arrangements (when Family Responsibility Time is not an option).
Note: Temporary full-time employees with employment contracts greater than six months who are not eligible as defined in 1. a) and b) above may apply for one day of PPL per year for the specific purpose of observing their obligatory religious holy days.
The self-funded leave plan is available to regular full-time staff (except members of CUPE 1334), subject to approval. It allows an employee to fund a leave of absence by deferring a portion of salary which will be paid during the leave. In accord with Part LXVIII of the Income Tax Regulations, Section 6801, you are not taxed on the deferred salary until the leave period.
For details, members of United Steelworkers Local 4120 should see their Collective Agreement and Exempt employees should see the Exempt Staff Association Agreement.
You may apply for a leave of absence of up to 12 months. To fund the leave, the University places up to 1/3 of your annual salary in an interest-bearing account. When you go on the leave of absence, you receive the amount set aside in the account.
For example, if you choose to work for three years at 75% of your normal salary, the remaining 25% goes into an interest-bearing account. In year four, you would go on leave and receive the amount set aside in the previous years. In this case, 75% of annual salary.
During the deferral period, you pay tax on the salary amount received, not on the portion set aside. In the example above, you pay tax on 75% of salary for four years, rather than 100% for three years. This may reduce your total tax.
The chart below gives examples of deferral options. Contact your Human Resources Associate for further details.
Terms and Conditions
- All regular full-time staff (except members of CUPE 1334) are eligible one year after completing the probationary period.
- We recommend discussing the plan with someone in Total Compensation. It is important to fully understand the implications of the plan before applying.
- Apply in writing to your department supervisor to join the plan. The supervisor will forward your application to the appropriate dean, librarian, director or vice-president for review. Your supervisor must agree that your job can be adequately filled during your absence. If approved, the application will go to the Assistant Vice-President, Human Resources, for implementation.
- If you are promoted or transferred to a different department during the deferral period, your continued participation in the plan is subject to the approval of your new supervisor.
- The maximum annual salary deferral in one year is 33 1/3%. The University will arrange to hold the deferred salary in a separate account for you. The account will be credited with monthly interest. After the end of each calendar year you will receive a cheque and a T5 form for the accrued interest, which you must report on your personal income tax return for that year.
Duration of Leave
- The leave must start within six years of the first salary deferral. If the leave is for full-time attendance at a designated educational institution, it may be as short as three consecutive months. Otherwise, the leave must be a minimum of six consecutive months and a maximum of 12 months.
- During the leave the University will not employ you in any capacity, even if the employment would be casual and unrelated to your normal duties.
- Your normal salary from the University will cease for the duration of your self-funded leave, during which you will receive your deferred salary.
Return from Leave
- Upon returning from leave, you have the right to the same position you held before the leave with no loss of salary or seniority. As a part of qualifying for the leave, you agree to return to your regular employment with the University for at least as much time as you were on leave.
- Upon your return from leave, the University will reinstate your vacation balance that was accumulated before your leave.
Cancellation of Leave
- Employees who join the plan must adhere to their commitment. However, in unforeseen or extenuating circumstances, you may request to withdraw from the plan up to three months before the scheduled leave date. You must inform your department supervisor and the Assistant Vice-President, Human Resources, in writing, of your intention to withdraw from the plan. On leaving the plan, you will receive your accumulated salary and any interest not paid, less tax. After withdrawing from the plan, you may later reapply.
- If you die while in the plan, any balance in your account at the time of death will be paid to your estate.
During the Salary Deferral Period
- You will contribute to the Pension Plan based on your full salary.
- Your Income Tax and the employee and employer portions of Canada Pension Plan contributions will be based on your reduced salary.
- Your Employment Insurance contribution will be based on your full salary. Your Life Insurance and Long Term Disability premiums and benefits will be based on your full salary and normal cost-sharing will apply.
- You will pay Extended Health and Dental Insurance premiums and normal cost-sharing will apply.
- You will accumulate vacation credits as if on full salary.
- You will accumulate sick leave, if applicable, as if on full salary.
During the Leave Period
- You will contribute to the Pension Plan based on your full salary.
- You will pay Income Tax and both the employee and employer portions of Canada Pension Plan contributions.
- You will not pay Employment Insurance (E.I.) premiums on your deferred salary payments, because your leave is not a period of employment for Employment Insurance (nor for E.I. Sickness, Adoption, Maternity, or Parental Leave). This may hinder your eligibility for E.I. benefits. Please contact Total Compensation for further details.
- Life insurance and Long Term Disability premiums and benefits will be based on your full salary, and normal cost-sharing will apply. If you become disabled during the leave, your sick leave payments will commence on the scheduled completion of your leave, assuming you are sick at that time; and the 90 calendar day Long Term Disability elimination period will begin on the date you became disabled, with benefit payments commencing on the later of your scheduled return to work or completion of the elimination period.
- Your Extended Health and Dental insurance premiums will continue and normal cost-sharing will apply.
- You remain eligible for normal salary increases based on your level of performance while in full-time employment. Any increase will become effective on your return to work.
- Vacation will not accumulate and you may not use vacation after your first month of leave.
- You will continue to receive credit for length of service.
The University intends to maintain the plan indefinitely, but it may amend or discontinue the plan in whole or in part at any time. The University will not amend the plan in a way that reduces benefits to those already enrolled in the plan.
Examples of Salary Deferral Options for Annual Salary of $30,000
|Period of deferral in years||Salary deferral per year||Annual salary payable in deferral period||Annual salary payable in leave of 1 year|
|1||33 1/3% = $10,000||66 2/3% = $20,000||33 1/3% = $10,000|
|2||33 1/3% = $10,000||66 2/3% = $20,000||66 2/3% = $20,000|
|2||25% = $7,500||75% = $22,500||50% = $15,000|
|3||25% = $7,500||75% = $22,500||75% = $22,500|
|3||20% = $6,000||80% = $24,000||60% = $18,000|
|4||20% = $6,000||80% = $24,000||80% = $24,000|
|4||25% = $7,500||75% = $22,500||100% = $30,000|
|5||20% = $6,000||80% = $24,000||100% = $30,000|
|5||15% = $4,500||85% = $25,500||75% = $22,500|
|6||10% = $4,500||90% = $27,000||60% = $18,000|
|6||15% = $4,500||85% = $25,500||90% = $27,000|
All employees are entitled to take up to ten (10) days of unpaid time off work each calendar year because of:
• personal illness, injury or medical emergency;
• death, illness, injury, medical emergency or other urgent matter relating to:
· a spouse or same-sex partner;
· a parent, step-parent, foster parent, child, stepchild, foster child, grandparent, step-grandparent, grandchild or step-grandchild of the employee, the employee's spouse or the employee's same-sex partner;
· the spouse or same-sex partner of an employee's child;
· a brother or sister of the employee; and
· a relative of the employee who is dependent on the employee for care or assistance.
Employees must inform their supervisor in advance that they will be taking an emergency leave of absence. If extenuating circumstances prevent the employee from providing such advance notice to his/her supervisor, then the employee must inform his/her supervisor as soon as possible. The supervisor can require the employee to provide evidence that is "reasonable in the circumstances" that the employee was entitled to the leave.
If an employee takes any part of a day as emergency leave, the employee will be deemed to have taken one (1) day's leave on that day. Therefore if an employee takes the afternoon off as emergency leave, they will have one full-day deducted from his/her emergency leave allotment.