Printed on: 10/15/2018. Please go to http://policy.umn.edu for the most current version of the Policy or related document.
Procedure

Requesting/Approving Discretionary Unpaid Personal Leave

Administrative Procedure

Requesting Unpaid Personal Leave Time

  1. Request for Unpaid Discretionary Leave

    A faculty member or P&A employee desiring unpaid personal leave time must request it in writing using the appropriate leave form as noted below under Reporting Requirements. Leave requests for a period of longer than two weeks should be submitted within a reasonable time frame prior to the requested start date of the leave when possible. When the leave requested is to exceed two weeks, the request is to be submitted using form UM1651: Request for Discretionary Unpaid Personal Leave.

  2. Request for Discretionary Leave Beyond 12 Months

    In the situation of special circumstances, the faculty member or P&A employee requesting unpaid personal leave extending beyond 12 months is to complete and submit a second form UM 1651: Request for Discretionary Unpaid Personal Leave.

Reporting Requirements

The form UM 1651: Request for Discretionary Unpaid Personal Leave is to be used when requesting leave for more than two weeks. If the leave is for less than two weeks, the time is requested and approved using the Absence Management system or other procedures as defined and communicated by the campus, college, or administrative unit.

Approving Request for Discretionary Unpaid Personal Leave Time

  1. Leave Approval

    The responsible administrator/supervisor reviews and discusses discretionary leave requests with the faculty member or P&A employee and make an assessment as to why the leave would be in the best interest of the employee and the University. The responsible administrator/supervisor is expected to consider carefully the faculty or P&A employee's request to be absent from work to determine if the department can operate effectively in the absence of the individual requesting the leave and how that might be accomplished. Requests are to be authorized in advance of the intended leave. Frequent recurring leaves are to be very carefully considered in light of the best interests of the University.

    The responsible administrator/supervisor makes the decision to approve the request or not when the leave is for two weeks or less. For a leave more than two weeks and up to 12 months, both the responsible administrator/supervisor and the department head decide approval of the request. When the request is for a leave beyond 12 months, the responsible administrator/supervisor discusses the request with the dean, vice president, or chancellor and a joint decision is made whether or not to approve the extension of leave time. Additional approvals beyond those outlined here may be required within the department or unit.

  2. Documentation

    The responsible administrator/supervisor ensures that appropriate documentation of the unpaid personal leave is entered in the Human Resource Management System (HRMS). For unpaid leave of two weeks (10 days) or less, reduce the pay to the appropriate amount thru Pay Entry. It is recommended that the earnings code, TUP (Unpaid Leave of Absence) be entered in Pay Entry to further document that the reduction in pay is due to an approved discretionary unpaid leave. For unpaid continuous leave greater than two weeks, the appropriate action/reason code in Job Data is used to designate the leave in the individual’s Employment Record.

Using Paid Time

The faculty member or P&A employee wishing to use available paid time (e.g., vacation) for a portion of unpaid leave may request such time from the responsible administrator/supervisor. The responsible administrator/supervisor reviews request and decides on approval.

Maintaining Benefits

  1. Consultation with Employee Benefits

    The faculty member or P&A employee planning on unpaid leave time beyond two weeks' time should consult with Employee Benefits to obtain information and assistance regarding benefits continuation during the time of the leave. Information is also available on the Employee Benefits Web site.

  2. Approval of Early Return to Work

    The responsible administrator/supervisor decides whether or not to approve an early return request.

  3. Failure to Return to Work

    The responsible administrator/supervisor informs the faculty member or P&A employee in writing that the failure to report to work is being treated as a resignation and offers to the individual an opportunity to respond. When necessary, another letter is sent to the employee confirming that employment has ended.

Documenting Unpaid Personal Leave

The responsible administrator/supervisor ensures that any unpaid personal leave has been appropriately entered into the employee’s employment record within the Human Resource Management System (HRMS).

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