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Policy 1319
Classified Employee Leave Without Pay

Date of Current Revision: December 2016
Primary Responsible Officer: Director of Human Resources

1. PURPOSE

It is university practice to grant classified employees leave without pay in accordance with this policy and the Virginia Personnel Act.

2. AUTHORITY

The Board of Visitors has been authorized by the Commonwealth of Virginia to govern James Madison University. See Code of Virginia § 23.1-1600. The Board has delegated the authority to manage the university to the president.

STATE OR FEDERAL STATUTE AND/OR REGULATION
The above authority allows the university to grant employees leave without pay. Also see Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM) Policy 4.45-Leave Without Pay and the Virginia Personnel Act, Code of Virginia § 2.2-2900.

3. DEFINITIONS

Conditional leave without pay
An employee's approved absence from work without pay (other than for military leave) that guarantees reinstatement only if the employee's position is available when he or she desires to return from leave. If the position is not available, the employee will be separated and may be employed again only after going through the normal recruitment and selection process.

Unconditional leave without pay
An employee's approved absence from work without pay that guarantees reinstatement to the position held by the employee before the leave was taken.

4. APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to all full-time classified employees.

5. POLICY

An agency may grant unconditional leave without pay for reasons that include:

An agency may grant conditional leave without pay for reasons where a guarantee of reinstatement is not practical, due to the agency’s need to fill the employee’s position. This leave without pay may be granted for the same reasons listed above for unconditional leave without pay, excluding military leave without pay. A leave without pay may be granted for a period of up to 12 months. An extension past 12 months may be requested for:

  • Extended disability of the employee (non-VSDP employees only)
  • Active duty with the Armed Forces of the United States
  • Special courses of study
  • Non-state employment in an essential position identified by the Department of Human Resource Management to be of vital importance to the state or national welfare

6. PROCEDURES

6.1 Classified employees must submit a request for leave without pay in writing to the immediate supervisor. All such written requests must indicate the type of leave requested and include a detailed justification for such leave. The supervisor will review the request for leave without pay and discuss the request with the employee. Once approved, the department must submit an employment status change ePAR. The employee's written request must be attached to the ePAR.

6.2 Employees will not accumulate leave during the period of leave without pay. Employees experiencing leave without pay longer than 14 consecutive calendar days will have their leave anniversary date adjusted, based on the length of absence.

6.3 Employees placed on leave without pay for military leave may freeze their leave balances. Employees on military leave will not have their leave anniversary date adjusted based on the length of absence.

6.4 Leave without pay may affect other benefits such as health insurance, retirement benefits and life insurance. Employees should contact Human Resources prior to requesting a leave without pay to learn of the effect of leave on benefits.

6.5 An employee on leave without pay may be subject to an adjustment in any performance related or cost-of-living increase, based upon the number of hours missed from work.

6.6 An employee who fails to return to work at the end of a period of leave without pay shall be deemed to have resigned from his or her position.

7. RESPONSIBILITIES

Employees requesting a leave without pay are responsible for submitting a written request and explanation to their supervisors. Employees seeking to extend their leave without pay status beyond the approved period are responsible for submitting a written request and justification to the director of human resources.

Supervisors are responsible for submitting an employment status change ePAR to begin the employee’s leave without pay and another ePAR to end it.

The director of human resources is responsible for coordinating any requests for extension of leave without pay with the appropriate department and informing the employee of the action taken.

8. SANCTIONS

Employees who fail to comply with this policy in requesting unpaid leave may have that request denied on the basis of failure to comply.

Sanctions will be commensurate with the severity and/or frequency of the offense and may include termination of employment.

9. EXCLUSIONS

Wage employees, instructional and administrative & professional faculty, and professional librarians are not covered under this policy.

10. INTERPRETATION

The authority to interpret this policy rests with the president, and is generally delegated to the director of human resources.

Previous Version: July 2012
Approved by the President: November 2002