Printed on: 08/18/2018. Please go to http://policy.umn.edu for the most current version of the Policy or related document.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Non-Renewal of Appointment for Academic Professional and Administrative Employees FAQ

  1. When is a non-renewal of a P&A appointment appropriate?

    A P&A staff member on an appointment type of annual renewable contract (K), multiple year contract (J), or non-credit teaching/other professional work contract (Z) has no right to a new appointment and non-renewal can occur for no reason or any reason as long as it is not an illegal reason. Appropriate circumstances for non-renewal could include, but are not limited to:

    • Downsizing;
    • Reorganization;
    • Elimination of position and/or all or some functions of the position.
  2. Do notices of non-renewal need to be given when reducing the percentage time of the employee's current contract?

    If either the employee or the responsible administrator requests the percentage reduction and both parties are in agreement, a notice of non-renewal is not needed. A new appointment letter should be generated which specifies the new percentage of time agreed to and other details about the appointment. The revised appointment information is to be entered into the Human Resource Management System (HRMS).

    If the responsible administrator has proposed a reduction in percentage of time, and the employee is not willing to agree to this reduction, a notice of non-renewal must be issued to the employee, according to the procedures as defined in this policy. If the employee is to be subsequently employed at a lesser percentage of time, this constitutes a new appointment, and a new contract is needed.

  3. What does it mean to give a notice of non-renewal in a timely fashion?

    Optimally, a notice of non-renewal should be given to the employee so that it falls completely within the term of appointment.

    If this is not possible, the appointment end date will be extended to provide for the required notice period.

    Example A: The employee is due a 3-month notice of non-renewal. The term of appointment ends on June 16 of this year. Notice of non-renewal is given on March 10. Because the entire 3-month notice occurs within the term of appointment, this notice is considered to be timely. Employment ends on June 16.

    Example B: The employee is due a 12-month notice of non-renewal. The term of appointment ends on June 16 of this year. Notice of non-renewal if given on March 10. Because the 12-month notice will not be fulfilled by June 16 (within the term of appointment), the appointment will need to be extended through March 9 of the following year to accommodate the 12-month notice. The extension is not a new appointment and thus does not require another notice of non-renewal.

  4. In determining eligibility, must an employee be working a minimum percentage of time at the time of non-renewal to qualify (i.e., 67% time and above)?

    No, but the appointment type and term must meet the eligibility requirements.

  5. A decision is made to give an employee a notice of non-renewal, however, the individual is on an approved unpaid leave of absence. Can the employee be given a notice of non-renewal during this time and if so, is there a need to allow for the notice period to occur during actual paid time?

    Yes, an employee can be given a written notice of non-renewal during the time of an approved unpaid leave of absence. The notice period can occur during all or some of the time the employee is out on unpaid leave with no salary being paid during the unpaid leave time. If the employee returns to work during the notice period, salary and appropriate benefits would be paid or be in effect at the time of return through the completion of the notice period. If the notice period is completed during the employee's unpaid leave, including but not limited to FMLA leave, the employment formally ends at that time.

    Note: An employee can be given notice of non-renewal while on FMLA leave. An employee has no greater right to continued employment or to other benefits than if the employee had been continuously employed during the FMLA leave.

  6. In calculating years of service to determine the length of non-renewal notice period, should you count time in a temporary or casual appointment?

    No, time in the temporary or casual appointment (refer to the Administrative Policy: Temporary and Casual Appointments) should not be counted.

  7. As of July 1, 2001, employees in academic professional (97xx) teaching specialist job code/title series and lecturer job code/title series are eligible for non-renewal notice period rights. In calculating length of notice period, does one include continuous years of academic non-student employment prior to July 1, 2001, when the Administrative Policy: Academic Appointments With Teaching Functions (formerly the Administrative Policy on Academic Appointments) was implemented?

    Yes, according to the policy requirements.

  8. A current P&A employee has two concurrent appointments, one as an academic professional (97xx) at 40% time in Unit A and the other as an academic administrator (93xx) at 60% time in Unit B. The employee is serving in their first year in the 97xx position and in their sixth year in the 93xx position. How much notice should be given?

    For non-renewal of the academic professional (97xx) position, you need to count the number of years in both the current 97xx position and the academic administrative (93xx) position. For non-renewal of the academic administrative (93xx) position, you need to count the number of years in the 93xx position only. In this particular example, the notice period of each of the positions would end up being the same, six months. See Non-Renewal Notice Period Requirements under Provisions and Terms.

  9. Do individuals hired on an hourly basis, such as teaching staff hired based on fluctuating need, have a non-renewal notice requirement?

    No. Individuals hired on an hourly basis based on fluctuating need are appointed to a Z term appointment. Z term appointments do not have a percentage time, are not benefits eligible, and do not give rise to rights of a notice period.

  10. Could you cite an example of how percent of time during your notice period requirements are calculated for part-time appointments?

    An employee works for five consecutive years at the following percentage times:

    • Year 1: 100%
    • Year 2: 75%
    • Year 3: 100%
    • Year 4: 80%
    • Year 5: 75%

    Average: (100+75+100+80+75)/5 = 86%

    This employee would have 5 years of service and would be entitled to 3 months' notice of non-renewal. During these 3 months, the employee must be allowed to work and be paid for a minimum of 86% time.

  11. How do you implement a 12-month non-renewal notice period requirement for an individual on a less than 12-month (A-term) appointment?

    No matter what the employee's term of appointment (i.e., 9-month, 10-month, 12-month), the eligible academic professional or administrative employee gets the same notice period, based on years of service. If the employee is on a term less than 12 months, they are entitled to the full notice period, but are only paid for that part of the year which is part of the paid appointment. The rest of the notice period is not paid.

    Example: An individual worked a 100% 6-month appointment every year and after 12 years received a notice of non-renewal. The employee would be entitled to a 12-month notice period that would include 6 months of paid time worked, and 6 months not worked or paid.

  12. If the unpaid time of the notice period comes at the end of the notice period requirement, how is the information to be entered into the Human Resource Management System (HRMS)? How should insurance be handled?

    There is a very specific process to follow. It can be accessed under HRMS Business Processes: Severance Package.

  13. Is an alternative to serving out the notice period available to the P&A employee receiving a non-renewal of appointment notice?

    Yes, a P&A employee meeting the required eligibility criteria may elect the benefits of the Non-Renewal Program. The position must be vacated within 60 days of receiving the written notice.

  14. Can a non-renewal notice be issued to effectively terminate an individual prior to the end of their contract appointment?

    No. Termination prior to an end date of an employment agreement is different from non-renewal of an employment agreement. The University cannot unilaterally terminate appointments of academic professional and administrative staff prior to the expiration date in the employment agreement except for employees reasons as described by the Administrative Policy: Early Termination of Appointment for Academic Professional and Administrative Employees.

  15. Are there provisions for severing an appointment when mutually agreed to by the employee and the responsible administrator?

    Under very exceptional and limited circumstances the University may initiate and enter into a mutually agreed upon severance agreement in exchange for early termination of appointment. Refer to the Administrative Policy: Early Termination of Appointment for Academic Professional and Administrative Employees.

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