Faculty Medical and Family Leave Policy
This policy establishes leaves of absence for faculty for medical, parental, and other family care purposes. Its goals are to assist faculty members in balancing the demands of the workplace with family obligations, and to establish equitable practices across the diverse departments, schools, and campuses of the University. This policy is ultimately intended to maximize the professional productivity of faculty women and men, while strengthening the University as a collegial and supportive work environment.
Relationship to Federal Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993
This policy will be administered consistent with the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) of 1993, and supersedes existing University policies on Faculty Sick and Maternity Leave and Family Leave. The Family and Medical Leave Act entitles eligible employees, as defined in the Act, to take unpaid family care and/or medical leaves of up to 12 workweeks in any 12-month period. The Act protects the employee's employment and medical benefits during authorized family and medical leaves. Consistent with the Act, this policy provides for paid leave periods which shall be substituted for all or part of the unpaid leave period provided by the Family and Medical Leave Act.
Faculty members eligible for leave under this policy are:
- full-time faculty and faculty librarians;
- part-time tenure-stream faculty and part-time faculty librarians, who are employed at least half-time.
Faculty members are eligible for leave as established by this policy regardless of length of service, except as outlined in Family Leave, B below.
A faculty member will receive regular salary for a period of up to 26 workweeks during any 12-month period in the event of his or her own serious medical condition or illness, conditional upon certification by a health care provider. If the reason for requested medical leave is foreseeable, the faculty member is required to provide 30 days notice of intent to take leave. If the need for leave is not foreseeable, the faculty member is required to provide as much notice as possible. Faculty members requesting a paid medical leave under this policy must submit a written request to the appropriate chair or dean, which includes a start date and an end date for the leave. The Certification of Physician or Practitioner, FORM 0189 PITT 1517
http://www.pitt.edu/~provost/form0189.pdf), can accompany the written request or it can be sent directly to the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs.
- Salary will be continued only during that period for which the faculty member would normally be on the payroll.
- When the medical leave extends beyond six calendar months, the individual may apply for an unpaid leave of absence not to exceed 12 additional months, or for disability insurance under the University Long-Term Disability Plan.
- During paid or unpaid medical leave, the faculty member may elect to perform certain responsibilities on a part-time basis, if approved by the dean and with the health care provider's certificate of fitness to work. The medical leave will count as full-time leave even if the faculty member chooses to work part-time during the leave. In no event, however, shall a faculty member who is on medical leave be compelled to waive any part of the leave to which he or she is entitled under this policy.
- When medically necessary, leave may be used on an intermittent basis. No faculty member will be paid for total medical leave time in excess of six months during any consecutive 12-month period.
- Faculty members are eligible for parental leave in the event of the birth or adoption of a child for whom the faculty member has parental responsibilities. Each faculty member may receive two workweeks of paid leave, to be taken within one calendar year after the birth or adoption of a child. Whether leave is taken as full time or equivalent prorated part time, leave shall be determined by the faculty member and his or her department chair. Such paid leave is in addition to medical leave granted under Medical Leave, A.
above, Family Leave, B. below, and any accrued vacation time. Married faculty members who are both employed at the University are each eligible for parental leave.
- Faculty members who have been employed at the University of Pittsburgh for 24 calendar months or more are eligible for up to a maximum of four weeks of paid leave during any consecutive 24-month period in the event of a serious medical condition or illness of a spouse, biological or adopted child, or parent for whom the faculty member has major responsibility. A completed Certification of Physician or Practitioner, FORM 0189 PITT 1517
http://www.pitt.edu/~provost/form0189.pdf ), must be presented outlining why the faculty member's attendance is necessary. Every effort shall be made to encourage a collegial exchange to minimize the impact of the leave on the unit.
- Faculty members are eligible for up to 12 months of unpaid family leave to care for a spouse, biological or adopted child, foster child, parent, or other household member for whom the faculty member has major responsibility. This may include routine childcare. Combined paid and unpaid leave shall not exceed 12 calendar months in any consecutive three-year period. Additional requests for unpaid family leave within this three-year period shall be reviewed by the Provost, who shall have the final decision with regard to its approval.
- Requests for a family leave should be submitted in writing to the appropriate department chair as far in advance of the proposed absence as possible so that the instructional or research programs are not interrupted.
- Upon return from family leave, the faculty member will be assured of the same or equivalent position. A family leave shall not, in itself, adversely affect decisions regarding the faculty member's salary, benefits, tenure, or promotion.
Medical, Life, and Disability Insurance Premiums
During all paid and unpaid leaves described above, the University will continue to pay its share of medical, life, Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance (AD&D) and disability insurance premiums, and the faculty member will be responsible for his or her portion. If a faculty member does not return to University employment after the leave, he/she is obligated to reimburse the University for its insurance expenditures during the leave.
Tenure Track Considerations
- When a faculty member takes medical or family leave for four calendar months or longer, the academic year in which the leave is taken shall not be counted as a year toward mandatory tenure review. The faculty member desiring this must submit a written statement to the appropriate department chair or dean within the period of the leave.
- When a faculty member becomes a parent by birth or adoption, or takes medical or family leave for less than four months, he or she may request that the year in which the leave is taken or parenthood occurs NOT count toward the mandatory tenure review. Any such request shall be reviewed by the Provost, who shall have the final decision with regard to its approval.
- Mandatory tenure review may not be delayed by the faculty member for more than three years under this policy.
For additional information, refer to University Policy 02-11-01
and University Procedure 02-11-01, Faculty
Medical and Family Leave Questions about the policy can be directed to the Office of the Provost, telephone 412-624-4222, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.