University and Academic Professionals leave
Employees designated University and Academic Professionals are eligible for the leave benefits described below. All leave benefits outlined below are based on a full-time work schedule.
Employees hired into Classified positions posted after July 1, 2016 are eligible for these leave benefits on January 1, 2018. Classified employees who elect to become University and Academic Professionals through the open enrollment period (January 1, 2018 - March 31, 2018) and A&P faculty will be eligible for the benefits outlined below effective July 1, 2018. Learn more about initial conversion to this new leave plan.
Paid leave may be used by employees for any purpose. This includes vacation, sick days, child care, doctors’ appointments, bereavement, personal days, religious holidays, etc. Paid leave accruals are in addition to paid holidays.
Paid leave table
|Years of service||Days per year||Hours per year||Max. annual leave carry |
forward (hours) at year end
|Former AP Faculty
with fewer than
20 yrs service
Other types of leave
University and Academic Professionals are eligible for 100% salary replacement for up to 125 work days in order to cover extended medical absences; eligibility for this benefit begins the first day of one’s employment at VCU. Employees covered by VSDP receive paid leave in an amount of the difference between VSDP income replacement and 100% pay. For those not in VSDP, the short-term disability plan covers 100% pay.
Employees who use short-term disability during their first year of employment and/or during their probationary period will automatically have their probationary period extended in Banner (by VCU Human Resources) so that it equals a full-year of work. (For example, if an employee begins at VCU on January 25th and goes out on short-term disability for the months of April and May, the employee’s probationary period will be extended by two months. Rather than ending on January 24th, it will end on March 24th.)
To use short-term disability, individuals are required to use their own paid leave (otherwise the waiting period is unpaid) to cover a waiting period of seven consecutive calendar days or typically five work days. Additional leave may be required until eligibility for a claim determination has been made. Upon the claim’s approval, additional leave used will be credited back to the employee. (University employees with banked Traditional Sick Leave Plan balances must exhaust those balances prior to using university short-term disability benefits.)
Employees must also complete the following steps:
- Notify manager, HR Professional or HR Administrator, and Timekeeper about the need for short-term disability by completing the Short-term Disability Form. In the event, the employee is unable to complete the Request form, the HR Administrator/Professional may complete the form.
- Complete FMLA form (search under ) and return to HR Professional or HR Administrator.
- Inform VCU Human Resources’ Leave Administration team of the need for short-term disability by submitting a copy of the completed Short-term Disability Request Form.
- Contact the Third Party Administrator to submit a claim. Your administrator is determined by your length of state service. Learn more about how to determine your Third Party Administrator.
- If covered by VSDP, contact VSDP Short-term Disability Third Party Administrator: The Reed Group 1-877-928-7021
- If not covered/eligible for VSDP, contact University Short-term Disability Third Party Administrator: The Standard 1-800-378-2395; see also The Standard's FAQ for filing a short-term disability claim
(Employees may contact VCU Human Resources to determine how they are covered.)
- Submit leave through VCU RealTime to cover the short-term disability waiting period. The first 5 working days are charged to the employee’s university leave. If the claim is not approved within the five day time period, the employee may continue on university leave until the claim is approved. If the claim is approved retroactively, the employee’s leave balance is credited for any days charged over the minimum 5 days required.
If a short-term disability claim is approved, the Third Party Administrator will notify the employee in writing. If the claim is denied, the Third Party Administrator will also notify the employee in writing. When claims are denied, the employee has the opportunity to appeal the decision. The employee may also be eligible to use paid leave or leave without pay to cover time out of the office.
If an employee is unable to return to work at the conclusion of the short-term disability period, the employee may be eligible for long-term disability benefits. Consult VCU Human Resources for guidance.
University and Academic Professionals with at least one year of service at VCU are eligible for paid Parental Leave benefits for childbearing and child-rearing. Parental Leave must be taken within 12 months of the birth, adoption, or placement of a child, and is taken, at a minimum, in one week increments. (Workload and scheduling must be reviewed and approved in advance.) To the extent it qualifies, leave granted under this category runs concurrently with coverage under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.
There are three types of Parental Leave:
1. Maternity leave is a medically approved absence due to childbearing and is covered under the university’s short-term disability benefit. It is typically six to eight weeks long, as directed by the medical provider. At the conclusion of the short-term disability “maternity leave” coverage period (when the employee is medically cleared and no longer under medical care), parental leave provides additional paid time off for eligible individuals in order to bond with their child(ren.) The short-term disability period and maternity leave period may combine for up to a total of 12 weeks of paid leave.
For example, if an employee with two years of VCU service is on short-term disability for six weeks of maternity leave (to recover from childbirth), she may also be awarded up to six weeks of paid parental leave to bond with her child at the conclusion of her short-term disability period. The maximum amount of paid parental leave in the case of maternity is 12 weeks.
2. Paid time off of up to six weeks is provided for the second parent for caregiving and bonding.
3. Paid time off of up to six weeks is provided for either or both parent(s) for adoption, surrogacy, or foster care. Parental leave at 100% pay for up to six weeks may be granted. Leave runs concurrently with FMLA, if applicable. Any additional time (covered by FMLA) must be covered using the individual’s paid time off or leave without pay. If both parents are VCU employees, the maximum amount of paid leave that will be granted is 12 weeks.
Parents may decide to take leave immediately after the child’s birth or at a later date. If, for example, it is beneficial for the parent to take leave when the child is three months old because it will allow for childcare at a time when the employee would otherwise not have it, the employee may take the leave at this time. Parental leave must be used within 12 months of the birth, adoption, or placement of a child.
To use this benefit, the employee must complete the following steps.
- Notify manager, HR Professional/Personnel Administrator, and Timekeeper, about the intention to take Parental Leave. (This applies to parents of biological, surrogate, adopted, or foster children.)
- Complete a Parental Leave Application.
- (An employee who gives birth and is medically cleared and no longer under medical care and short-term disability, should complete a Parental Leave Request Form to request Parental Leave for paid leave to cover the remainder of the possible 12 week period. She may submit this form at the same time she requests short-term disability in order to express her intent to use Parental Leave.)
- Complete FMLA Medical Forms and return to HR Professional/Personnel Administrator.
- Manager approves leave. The employee is notified of approval and the expected return to work date.
University and Academic Professionals with at least one year of continuous VCU service as a classified employee, faculty member or University & Academic Professional, are eligible for paid caregiving leave to serve as primary caregiver for a sick child, elder or other immediate family member (such as a spouse, parent, stepparent, sibling, grandparent, etc.). Caregiving leave eligibility also extends to the care for another individual who shares a household with an employee and for whom the employee is the primary caregiver. (Employees should address questions about whether coverage applies to caretaking for a specific individual with their managers.) Caregiving leave is for use to care for an individual with chronic or severe illness where absences of greater than 40 hours is necessary. Incidental time off to care for a family member is charged to regular university leave.
Caregiving leave provides up to 100 percent salary replacement for up to 80 hours (10 days) maximum per leave year through the VCU leave-sharing program. (The VCU leave year runs January 10th through January 9th of the following calendar year.) Leave may be taken intermittently, with supervisory approval. (Workload and scheduling must be reviewed and approved in advance.)
To be eligible, employees must first use 40 hours (five days) of their annual allocation of paid time off for the caregiving event to receive 40 hours (five days) from the leave-sharing pool. (As with any University Leave, managers have the discretion to grant or disapprove the initial University leave request.) The employee may be eligible for the remaining 40 hours (five days) after matching an additional 40 hours (five days) from their annual allocation of paid leave. Leave from the leave-sharing pool is awarded to an employee following the employee’s use of paid leave for caregiving purposes.
Caregiving Leave may be granted for an individual to care for multiple individuals during a one year period, as long as the maximum 80 hours (10 days) of leave has not been used. For example, if an employee has used 40 hours of university leave to aid an ill mother, and been granted 40 hours of Caregiver Leave, in the same year the employee may also use an additional 40 hours of university leave to care for a sick child and request Caregiver Leave for another 40 hours. If, in the leave year, the employee had been awarded and used 80 hours of Caregiver Leave to care for one’s mother, the employee would not be eligible for additional Caregiver Leave to care for a child during that leave year.
To the extent it qualifies, leave granted under this category runs concurrently with coverage under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.
In order to request this benefit, the employee completes the following steps:
- Complete the Caregiver Leave Application, including obtaining manager signature. (The initial 40 hours must be requested at once. The employee must complete another form for any additional leave that is requested.)
- Complete FMLA Forms. (Certification issued by a health care provider confirming the serious health condition will be required.)
- Submit all forms to VCU Human Resources for review and approval
- Once eligibility is verified and FMLA is approved (if applicable), HR works with departmental Timekeeper and HR Professional to administer leave appropriately.
University and Academic Professionals are granted 16 hours (two days) paid time off to engage in volunteer service activities sponsored through VCU or VCU Health either individually or as part of a group. (This leave is in addition to the 16 hours [two days] paid time off granted under DHRM policy 4.40 School Assistance and Volunteer Service Leave that allows employees to participate in volunteer community service organizations; to meet with public or private school or daycare officials about their children; to attend school, daycare or homeschool functions in which their children are participating; to perform school-approved volunteer work in a public school.)
VCU's enhanced Community Service Leave provides University employees the opportunity to support the VCU and VCU Health communities and strengthen university-community relationships; it may only be used to participate in events sponsored by these organizations. (Enhanced Community Service Leave may not be used on a day the University is officially closed for a designated holiday; it is for use during an employee’s regular work hours.)
To request use of this leave, the employee must complete the following steps:
- Complete an Enhanced Community Service Leave Volunteer Form and obtain supervisory approval
- Once the leave is approved, employee requests leave through VCU RealTime using the assigned leave code
Paid time off granted by the university for absences such as jury duty, testifying in court in response to a subpoena, service as an officer of election, state job interview, pre-disciplinary leave pending an investigation and suspension with pay.
Other leave benefits provided to University and Academic Professionals as offered by VCU include holiday pay, FMLA, leave without pay, compensatory leave, office closing and recognition leave. In addition, the following leave applies to University employees as outlined in the policies for classified staff as administered by the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM):
- Civil and Work-Related Leave (DHRM Policy Number: 4.05)
- Educational Leave (DHRM Policy Number: 4.15)
- Emergency Disaster Leave (DHRM Policy Number: 4.17)
- Leave To Donate Bone Marrow or Organs (DHRM Policy Number: 4.37)
- Military Leave (DHRM Policy Number: 4.50)
- Public Health Emergency Leave (DHRM Policy Number: 4.52)
- VSDP (DHRM Policy Number: 4.57)
- Worker’s Compensation (DHRM Policy Number: 4.60)