Approved by: The President
History: Issued              -- June 1, 1994
Revised            -- October 5, 2023
Last Reviewed -- October 5, 2023
Related Policies: Categories of Employment Policy; Faculty Handbook (Part III); Family and Medical Leave Policy; Sick and Safe Leave Policy; Workers' Compensation Policy
Additional References:

Office of General Counsel Web Page on USERRA; Your Rights Under USERRA

Policy Owner:

Responsible Official:

Vice President for Finance and Treasurer, tel. (202) 319-5606

Associate Vice President for Human Resources and Chief Human Resources, tel. (202) 319-5050

 

I. Introduction

Leave is defined as an authorized absence from work. Leave is granted to staff employees for various reasons such as vacation, health, bereavement, care for a child or family member, and military service. Most types of leave are paid. However, unpaid leave time may be granted under some circumstances. This policy sets forth the various types of leave granted by the University to staff employees and the requirements for each. For questions regarding leave for staff employees, contact the Office of Human Resources at tel. (202) 319-5050. For questions regarding leave for faculty employees, review Part III of the Faculty Handbook.

II. Annual Leave

The University recognizes the importance of balancing work responsibilities with family and other interests. Benefits eligible staff employees (“employees”) are granted paid annual leave (vacation), which accrues at various rates depending on employment category and/or length of service.

The University's annual leave year (vacation year) is from September 1 through August 31 of the following year. The amount of leave is prorated when an employee works less than a full vacation year. While it is important for employees to make full use of the vacation time to which they are entitled, it is also important for managers to be able to schedule work assignments and coverage during employee absence. To ensure that such planning is possible, employees are expected to request authorization to use annual leave in writing at least ten days in advance whenever possible. Managers are expected to approve requests for vacation provided that it does not interfere with the workload of the department.

Regular part-time employees in benefits-eligible positions receive prorated vacation according to hours worked. Employees are not eligible to use annual leave until the successful completion of the initial review (probationary) period. Annual leave is not accrued for unpaid hours or leave of absence without pay.

Employees will begin accruing annual leave on the first of the month following their date of hire.

Employees who are members of a collective bargaining unit should review the collective bargaining agreement for additional leave information and requirements.

A. Exempt Employees

 

Exempt employees earn 21 days of annual leave (vacation) each leave year. Annual leave is accrued on a biweekly basis. Exempt employees who are hired after the beginning of a vacation leave year will receive prorated vacation according to their hire date.

Each year's full allotment of vacation (prorated where applicable) is available to exempt employees on the first day of the vacation year even though it has not yet been accrued. If an exempt employee uses vacation leave in excess of his or her allotted 21 days before the end of the vacation year, they should not be approved for any further vacation leave until the new vacation year. If an exempt employee uses vacation in excess of his or her accrued balance and then leaves the University, the employee must reimburse the University for the unearned used vacation days. The reimbursement will be effected through payroll deduction from the employee's final paycheck.

Unused Vacation Time

The University encourages employees to use their vacation leave during the year in which it is accrued. If an exempt employee has accrued vacation remaining at the end of the vacation year (August 31), he/she can carry over up to a maximum of 7 days into the next vacation year. Any days remaining in excess of the seven (7) allowable carry over days will be forfeited as of August 31 and not carried forward. All leave reports must be submitted to the Payroll Office on a timely basis.

Termination of Employment

Exempt employees with six months or more of service, who are current with their timesheets at the time of their last regular payroll, will receive payment for accumulated unused annual leave, up to a maximum of 10 days. Employees who terminate employment with less than six months of service are not eligible to be reimbursed for any accrued leave remaining at the time of termination.

B. Non-Exempt Employees

 

Accrual

Regular, full-time, non-exempt employees who are not covered by a collective bargaining agreement accrue annual leave (vacation) on a biweekly basis based on the following schedule:

  • Less than 3 years of service: 12 days per year
  • 3 - 5 years of service: 15 days per year
  • 6 - 10 years of service: 18 days per year
  • More than 10 years of service: 21 days per year

Unused Vacation Time

The University encourages employees to use their vacation during the leave year in which it is earned. However, if a non-exempt employee has accrued vacation remaining at the end of the vacation year (August 31), he or she may carry over a designated number of days into the next vacation year. Non-exempt employees hired before January 1, 1994 may carry over a maximum of 30 days of accrued vacation leave to the next vacation year. Non-exempt employees hired on or after January 1, 1994 will be permitted to carry over a maximum of 21 days of accrued vacation leave to the next vacation year.

Termination of Employment

If a non-exempt employee with at least six months of service has accrued vacation leave remaining at the time of termination of employment, he or she will be reimbursed for a maximum of 30 days if hired before 1/1/1994 or a maximum of 21 days if hired on or after 1/1/1994. Employees who terminate employment with less than six months of service are not eligible to be reimbursed for any accrued leave remaining at the time of termination.

Change in Employment Status

If an employee transitions from a non-exempt to an exempt position, any available accrued vacation leave will be reimbursed up to a maximum of 30 days if hired before 1/1/1994 or a maximum of 21 days if hired on or after 1/1/1994. Any balance above the allowed reimbursable amount will be forfeited. The employee will begin accruing vacation leave according to the exempt vacation accrual schedule as of the pay period in which their employment status has changed.