Policies & Contracts

512 - Sick Leave

Subject: Sick Leave

Section: U512

Date: May 11, 2005 (Revised January 1, 2017)


Purpose:

To provide eligible staff employees with paid sick leave, and to establish guidelines for sick leave accrual and usage.

Policy:

Benefits-eligible staff employees begin accruing sick leave at their most recent date of benefits-eligibility and can use sick leave after three (3) months of employment for absences due to the employee’s own illness and for absences due to an illness, injury, or medical appointment of the employee's child, spouse, sibling, parent, mother-in-law, father-in-law, grandchild, grandparent, or stepparent.

Guidelines:

  1. Each unit is responsible for maintaining an eligible staff employee’s record of accrued and used sick leave, which should commence after the third (3rd) month of employment. Each unit should establish and communicate guidelines for requesting sick leave.
  2. An eligible, exempt staff employee must record sick leave taken on his/her Monthly Absence Report. An eligible, non-exempt staff employee must record sick leave taken on his/her timecard.
  3. An eligible staff employee accrues two (2) standard workweeks of sick leave per year.
  4. An eligible staff employee is credited with earned sick leave after each completed month of service to the University. Sick leave is accrued monthly at the rate of one-twelfth (1/12) the employee's annual accrual. Monthly sick leave accruals for a regular full-time or part-time staff employee are calculated by multiplying the number of the employee’s standard workweek hours by the number of annual accrued standard workweeks of sick leave and then dividing by twelve (12).

    For example, an eligible staff employee with a standard workweek of 37.5 hours per week accrues two (2) standard workweeks of sick leave per year at a monthly accrual rate of 6:15 hours per month. To calculate: 37.5 hours per week x 2 weeks per year ÷ 12 months per year = 6:15 hours per month.

    The most common sick leave accrual rates are as follows:

    Hours Worked per Week Monthly Accrual

    (Hours/Minutes)
    20 3:20
    25 4:10
    30 5:00
    37.5 6:15
    40 6:40
  5. An eligible staff employee scheduled to work irregular hours each week will accrue at a rate based on the average weekly hours scheduled per month.
  6. Sick leave accrual records for an eligible, exempt staff employee (monthly paid) may be maintained in hourly increments. Sick leave use for an eligible exempt employee is based on the employee's average scheduled hours per day. An eligible, exempt staff employee who takes a full-day absence will have accruals deducted at a rate equal to the employee’s average scheduled hours per day for each day of sick leave taken.
    • Example #1: An eligible, exempt staff employee who works a five (5) day, 37.5 hour standard workweek will have 7:30 hours deducted from his/her sick leave accrual balance for each day of sick leave taken. To calculate: 37.5 hours per week ÷ 5 days per week = 7:30 hours per sick day.
    • Example #2: An eligible, exempt staff employee who works a four-day, 20-hour standard workweek will have 5.0 hours deducted from his/her sick leave accrual balance for each day of sick leave taken. To calculate: 20 hours per week ÷ 4 days per week = 5.0 hours per sick day.
  7. An eligible staff employee who has been granted time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for his/her own health condition can use sick leave to be paid. An eligible employee who has been granted time off under FMLA for the health condition of his/her spouse, child, parent, or University-registered domestic partner cannot use sick leave to be paid. (See Policy U522 Family and Medical Leave of Absence)
  8. For an eligible, exempt staff employee, absences of less than one full day are neither to be charged to accumulated sick leave time, nor are they to be deducted from pay. Eligible, exempt staff employees who use sick leave to be paid while granted time off under FMLA may have sick leave accruals deducted on an hour-for-hour basis.
  9. An eligible, non-exempt (hourly paid) staff employee will have accruals deducted on an hour-for-hour basis.
  10. When an eligible staff employee is absent due to his/her own illness, and sick leave accrual is exhausted, the employee is in out-of-pay status unless he/she elects to use accrued vacation and/or personal holiday time and has received supervisory approval to do so. (See Policy U509 Vacation and U511 Personal Holidays)
  11. An eligible staff employee will not accrue sick leave during any month in which he/she is in an out-of-pay status (i.e., on leave of absence), on sick leave, on Workers’ Compensation, or on Short-Term/Long-Term Disability, for more than one-half (1/2) the standard working hours. (See Policy U513 Short-Term Disability and U514 Long-Term Disability)
  12. An eligible staff employee who is absent and who is compensated under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act or the Illinois Occupational Diseases Act will not have sick leave accruals deducted. In these cases, an eligible staff employee can use sick leave accruals to supplement the difference between Workers’ Compensation payments and the employee’s regular salary.
  13. Pay for sick leave will be at the eligible staff employee's regular base rate of pay when sick leave is used. Bonuses and other variable compensation are not included in calculating sick leave pay. Sick leave hours are not considered "hours worked" in calculating overtime.
  14. An eligible staff employee’s accrued sick leave balance expires upon termination of employment, unless the employee is rehired within thirty (30) days or recalled from layoff status.
  15. An employee eligible for sick leave allowances may use accrued sick leave for purposes of routine physician appointments if the time has been approved in advance by the employee's supervisor.
  16. Except as provided in Guideline 16, accrued paid time off cannot be used for time off of less than 30 minutes.
  17. During Short-Term illnesses, an eligible employee should notify the unit daily of his/her condition and anticipated return following unit guidelines. An employee who fails to follow unit guidelines may result in having an unpaid unexcused absence.
  18. A supervisor should, on a periodic basis, review employee attendance records to determine if there has been an excessive use of sick leave.
  19. An eligible staff employee may be requested to present a certified statement from a health care provider regarding the illness. Failure to present such a document on request can disqualify the employee for sick leave allowances and may result in corrective action. (See Policy U703 Progressive Corrective Action )
Employees represented by a union may be governed by the appropriate bargaining unit.