Civic Responsibility and Military Leave of Absence

Civic Responsibility

The University will continue an eligible employee's normal scheduled pay, for a limited period of time, under the following circumstances:

  • Jury Duty
  • Court Service: When an employee is subpoenaed to serve as a witness in a court case
  • Other Activities: An employee may be released with pay for other civic duties, at the discretion of the Department of Human Resources.

The employee will provide a copy of applicable documentation (e.g., a summons or subpoena) to his/her manager. The maximum leave time each year under this policy is five working days. In the event of a special circumstance requiring additional time, the employee may appeal to the immediate supervisor for extended time. An extension with pay can be granted only by concurrence of the appropriate department head and the Department of Human Resources.

Employees summoned to appear for jury duty during a scheduled vacation period will not be eligible for leave under this policy until the scheduled return date from the vacation period.

Military Leave of Absence

Paid Military Leave

An employee who has an obligation to perform Service will be granted a paid military leave of absence for a period of up to 12 months, as set forth below. Such leave of absence shall not be charged against regular vacation.

  • The employee will be expected to provide to the University as much advance notice as possible (or at least 30 days’ notice), and to coordinate the scheduling of the Service assignment with the University work schedule unless giving notice is impossible, unreasonable, or precluded by military necessity.
  • When an employee is ordered to active military duty, the University will pay the difference between the total gross military pay received from the United States Government and the gross base salary he/she would have received had his/her employment not been interrupted by active military duty, for a period not to exceed 12 months per order to active military duty. In the event military pay exceeds the employee’s University salary, no differential will be provided.
  • While on paid military leave, benefits will continue to accrue as if the employee were at work, except if an applicable employee benefit plan excludes the employee from coverage. All benefits provided under an employee benefit plan are governed by the terms and conditions of the applicable employee benefit plan documents in accordance with applicable law.
  • For all other non-seniority benefits, except for the pay differential under this policy, an employee on military service leave will receive the same rights and benefits as employees on a paid leave of absence.

Unpaid Military Leave

An employee will be placed on unpaid military leave of absence at the time when the period of Service extends beyond 12 months in duration.

  • Vacation and medical leave accruals are suspended during the period covered by the unpaid military leave of absence.
  • The University sponsored health and welfare plans will not be automatically terminated when the unpaid military leave of absence begins, but will be administered on the same basis as other persons on unpaid leave. Employees who are on military leave of absence for more than 12 months may elect to continue previously elected coverage of University-sponsored health and welfare plans for themselves and their families, but they will be required to elect said coverage in writing and agree to pay the total premiums involved, including the University’s and employee’s portion of the premium(s).
  • The employee is permitted, but not required, to request that military leave beyond 12 months be counted by the University as vacation leave with pay to the extent the employee has accrued leave. The University cannot require an employee to use his or her vacation days during a period of Service.
  • For purposes of length of service at the University, time spent on military leave of absence will be considered as continuous employment.

Reemployment Rights

Following completion of Service, a returning employee must promptly return to work, or apply for reemployment, in accordance with USERRA:

  • If the employee’s Service was less than 31 days, the employee must report to work on the first regularly scheduled workday of at least 8 hours following the employee’s return home from Service.
  • If the employee’s Service was between 31 and 180 days, the employee must apply for reemployment within 14 days following completion of Service.
  • If the employee’s Service was more than 180 days, the employee must apply for reemployment within 90 days following completion of Service.
  • If the employee suffered a Service-connected injury or illness and his hospitalized or recovering, the employee must report to work, or apply for reemployment, within 2 years following completion of Service, depending on the length of recovery time required.

An employee is entitled to reemployment rights and maintenance of employment benefits only if the employee returning from Service meets the following eligibility criteria.

  • The employee must have given advance notice to the University that he or she was leaving employment for Service in the Uniformed Services (unless such notice was precluded by military necessity or was otherwise impossible or unreasonable).
  • The cumulative length of Service, and all previous absences from a position of employment with the University due to Service, must not exceed 5 years.
  • The person must have been released from Service under honorable conditions or retained in the service in other than active duty status.

Upon return from leave, employees who are eligible for reemployment will be reemployed with the same seniority, and all rights and benefits based on that seniority, that they would have attained if they had not taken military leave. Seniority rights include pay and benefits that accrue or are determined based on their length of service.

  • Upon return from leave, an employee normally will be promptly reemployed in a position that the employee would have attained if continuously employed by the University, so long as the employee is qualified for such position or can become qualified after reasonable efforts by the University. Depending on the circumstances, reemployment under this policy may result in adverse job consequences such as reemployment in a lower position, lay off, or termination.
  • If the employee is not qualified or cannot become qualified for a position that the employee would have attained if continuously employed by the University, the employee will be reemployed in a position which is the nearest approximation of the position the employee would have attained if continuously employed by the University, and for which the employee is qualified.

Nothing in this policy requires the University to reemploy an employee who is not eligible for reemployment rights under USERRA or applicable law.

Discrimination and Retaliation

The University prohibits and will not tolerate discrimination or retaliation against any employee or applicant because of that person's membership in or obligation to perform service for the Uniformed Services. Specifically, no one will be denied employment, reemployment, promotion, or any other benefit of employment, or be subjected to any adverse employment action based on that person's membership in or service for the Uniformed Services. In addition, no one will be retaliated against because that person exercised rights under this policy or applicable law. If employees feel that they or someone else may have been subjected to conduct that violates this policy, they should report it to their supervisor or the Department of Human Resources immediately.