UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH PROCEDURE 07-07-02
SECTION: Employee Leave Benefits
SUBJECT: Leave Under the Family and Medical Leave Act for Staff
EFFECTIVE DATE: March 20, 2013 Revised
To provide the steps for applying for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act,
determining eligibility, and establishing FMLA recordkeeping guidelines for individual schools
This procedure applies to all staff employees on all campuses of the University. It includes
both intermittent leaves and block leaves for conditions defined by the Family and Medical
Leave Act of 1993, as amended (the “Act”). It does not apply to sick time or sick/family
obligation time that does not meet the definition of serious health condition as defined by
The following terms are defined by the Family and Medical Leave Act.
Eligible employee includes all regular full- and part-time employees who have worked for
the University for at least 12 months and have been employed for at least 1,250 hours of
service during the preceding 12-month period.
Rolling Year is a 12-month period measured backward from the date the staff member
uses FMLA leave. Each eligible staff member is entitled to a total of 12 weeks of FMLA
leave per rolling year for family leave, medical leave, or up to 26 weeks per year during a
single 12-month period for servicemember family leave.
Family Leave is an unpaid leave granted for the birth, adoption, or care of a newborn child
of the staff member or placement of a foster child with the staff member.
Medical Leave is an unpaid leave granted to care for an immediate family member with a
serious health condition or because the staff member's own serious health condition
renders the staff member incapacitated from performing the functions of his or her job.
Medical leave may be used on an intermittent basis.
Covered servicemember means a member of the Armed Forces, including a member of
the National Guard or Reserves, who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or
therapy, is otherwise in out-patient status, or is otherwise on the temporary disability
retired list, for a serious injury or illness. Covered servicemember can also include certain
covered veterans. The FMLA definitions of "serious injury or illness" for current
servicemembers and veterans are distinct from the FMLA definition of "serious health
condition." For further details see:
Serious health condition or illness refers to an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or
mental condition that involves:
- a period of incapacity or treatment connected with inpatient care (i.e., an overnight
stay in a hospital, hospice, or residential medical care facility);
- a period of incapacity requiring absence of more than three consecutive calendar days
from work, school, or other regular daily activities that also involves two or more
treatments by a health care provider or treatment by a health care provider on one
occasion which results in a regimen of continuing treatment by or under the
supervision of a health care provider;
- a period of incapacity due to pregnancy or prenatal care; or
- a period of incapacity or continuing treatment by or under the supervision of a health
care provider for a chronic serious health condition, restorative surgery after an
accident or other injury or for a long-term health condition that is incurable or so serious
that, if untreated, would likely result in a period of incapacity of more than three
consecutive calendar days.
Servicemember family leave is an unpaid leave granted during a single 12-month period
to care for a covered servicemember if the staff member is the spouse, son, daughter,
parent or next of kin to the covered servicemember.
Immediate family members include parents, biological or adopted children, or spouse.
The term parent refers to a biological, foster or adoptive parent, a stepparent, or legal
guardian. For medical leave, the term child means a biological, adopted, or foster child, a
stepchild, a legal ward, or a child of a person standing in loco parentis, who is under age
18 or age 18 or older and “incapable of self-care” as defined pursuant to FMLA regulations.
Health Care Provider includes doctors of medicine or osteopathy, podiatrists, dentists,
clinical psychologists, optometrists, chiropractors, nurse practitioners, and nurse midwives
authorized to practice under state law; and Christian Science practitioners listed with the
First Church of Christ, Scientist in Boston, Massachusetts.
Equivalent position is a position having the same pay, benefits, working conditions, and
substantially similar duties and responsibilities and entails substantially equivalent skill,
effort, responsibility, and authority.
Key employees are salaried employees who are among the highest paid ten percent of all
University employees within 75 miles of the individual employee's worksite. Position
reinstatement rights may not be available to key employees in certain circumstances as
defined by the Act.
IV. ADMINISTRATIVE RESPONSIBILITIES
The Office of Human Resources is responsible for administering benefits under the Family
and Medical Leave Act including, providing information, upon request, concerning staff
member rights and responsibilities; determining eligibility; and processing the necessary
paperwork to ensure continuation of benefits. The Office of Human Resources has
designated a third party provider to fulfill the administrative functions for leave under the
Family and Medical Leave Act.
School or Department Administrators are responsible for:
- Processing the necessary payroll action forms to initiate the paid or unpaid leave
- Maintaining all time records concerning family and medical leaves, paid and unpaid
- Ensuring that staff members comply with the requirement to initiate leave by contacting
the University’s third party provider.
Applying for Unpaid Leave Under the Family and Medical Leave Act
Staff Member 1. Notify the school or department of the need for FMLA
leave at least 30 days in advance of the first day of
a. In cases in which the nature of the condition or
illness makes the need for leave unforeseeable,
notify the departmental administrator of need for
leave as soon as practicable.
School/Department 2. Consult with the Office of Human Resources if
necessary to ascertain whether the requested leave
meets the criteria for FMLA leave and to verify
whether the staff member meets the definition of
"eligible employee." See Section III, Definitions.
3. Direct the staff member to contact the University’s
third party provider when a staff member has had a
period of incapacity for more than three consecutive
calendar days, or when the staff member has identified
a need for leave.
Staff Member 4. Contact the third party provider and complete the
required certification or verification forms.
Office of Human
Resources through the
third party provider 5. Determine whether the leave should be counted as
approved FMLA leave.
6. If the staff member is eligible and the requested leave
meets the criteria for FMLA leave, provide the staff
member with a FMLA rights package, which will
include notification that the University may require
the employee to provide a written fitness-for-duty
certification signed by his or her health care
provider prior to returning to work.
7. Upon receipt of certification or verification, advise
the staff member and the department whether the
eligibility requirement and the criteria for a family or
medical leave are met.
8. If the reason for the requested time off meets the
criteria for FMLA leave, notify the staff member that
the time off will count toward the FMLA leave
allowance based on the rolling year criterion defined
in Section III.
9. Advise the staff member that the University will
continue medical insurance benefits, and provide
information regarding maintenance of other benefits.
(See Policy 07-07-02.)
NOTE: Medical benefits are continued on the same
basis as the staff member enjoyed on active status
and, where appropriate, the staff member will be
invoiced by the University for his share of the health
10. If the conditions for FMLA leave are not met, inform
the staff member and the department of the reasons.
Recordkeeping for Leave Under the Family and Medical Leave Act
Administrator 1. If the reason for the requested time off meets the
criteria for family or medical leave, record the time
off as FMLA leave on FORM 0099, Staff Time
2. For paid or unpaid leave, process the Employee
Record (ER) to document the dates of the leave
and deduct the time off from the staff member's
a. For continuous leaves, complete and process
the staff member's Employee Record (ER) and
submit to Compensation with a copy of the
staff member’s time record.
b. For intermittent leaves an Employee Record
(ER) should only be submitted if the employee
does not have sufficient paid time off to cover
the leave. Note the days that need to be docked
in the remarks section. Review the monthly
tracking form, which the staff member received
from the third party provider, with the
staff member to ensure accuracy, sign and
return to the third party provider.
Return to Work
Administrator 1. Prior to returning to work from an approved FMLA
leave, an employee whose FMLA leave was
occasioned by the employee’s own serious health
condition may be required to provide a written
fitness-for-duty certification signed by his or her
health care provider, so long as this requirement is
consistently applied to similarly situated employees.
2. Upon return from a family or medical leave,
reinstate the staff member to the former or
equivalent position as defined by the Family and
Medical Leave Act. See Section III, Definitions.
If necessary to restore the staff member to active
status, complete an Employee Record to change
the assignment status to active and note the last
day of paid/unpaid leave. Notify the third party
provider of the staff member’s return to work.
Policy 07-07-02, Leave Under the Family and Medical Leave Act for Staff
Policy 07-04-01, Time Records/Attendance/Overtime and Compensatory Time