Unpaid Leaves of Absence

Occasionally, for medical, personal, or other reasons, you may need to be temporarily released from the duties of your job with Kenyon College, but may not wish to submit your resignation. Under certain circumstances, you may be eligible for an unpaid leave of absence.

There are several types of unpaid leaves which you may be eligible for:

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Family/Medical Leave of Absence (FMLA)

FMLA Forms

In general, a leave of absence is an official authorization to be absent from work without pay for a specified period of time. Eligible employees may be entitled to job-protected family or medical leaves of absence if they are unable to come to work due to pressing family or medical concerns as described under the following Family/Medical Leave Policy, which shall be administered in accordance with applicable State and Federal laws:

1) Employees are eligible if they have been actively employed by the College for a total of 12 months, and have performed at least 1,250 hours of service during the 12 month period immediately preceding the commencement of the leave.

2) Under the circumstances set forth below, each eligible employee shall have up to a total of 12 weeks leave during any one year period. For FMLA purposes, the one year period will be based upon the date which an employee's FMLA leave commences.

3) A family leave shall be granted upon the birth or adoption of a child of the employee, or upon the serious health condition of the employee's child, spouse, parent or domestic partner.

4) A medical leave shall be granted upon the employee's own serious health condition.

5) Whenever possible, and subject to your health care provider's approval, absences for planned medical treatment should be scheduled so as not to unduly disrupt College operations.

6) In appropriate circumstances, we may require you to be examined by a College designated physician, at our expense.

7) In the event of a serious health condition to the employee or his/her child, spouse, parent or domestic partner, creating a need for unforeseeable family or medical leave, the employee should provide us with notice, as soon as practicable, of any needed time off, and a written doctor's certificate indicating the expected duration and nature of the condition, particularly as it relates to the employee's ability to come to work or the need for that employee's presence at home to care for a family member with a serious health condition.

8) Employees shall be required to give 30 days advance notice in the event of a foreseeable medical treatment. To assist us in arranging work assignments during your absence, we ask that you give us prior notice, to the extent possible, of an expected birth or adoption, as well as an indication, to the extent known, of your expected return date. To facilitate your return to work, we also ask that you provide us with two weeks advance notification of your intended return date. Failure to do so may delay your return date.

At the end of a leave for the employee's own serious health condition, the employee must provide medical certification that they are able to return to work.

9) For purposes of this policy, a child is defined as a natural, adopted, or foster child, a stepchild or a legal ward. If the child is over 18 they must be unable to care for themselves due to a serious health condition.

10) A parent is defined as the employee's or their spouse's natural, adoptive, or foster parent, stepparent, or legal guardian.

11) A Domestic Partner is defined as a same or opposite sex partner, residing in the employee's home. (See full definition under Group Health Insurance - Definition of a Domestic Partner).

12) A serious health condition is defined as an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition lasting more than three consecutive days that involves (1) inpatient care (i.e., an overnight stay) in a hospital, hospice or residential medical care facility or; (2) Continuing treatment by a health care provider.

13) In cases where the leave is due to a serious health condition, the employee may request an intermittent or reduced leave schedule providing it is medically necessary to do so and the time away from work does not exceed twelve workweeks in total. An example would be taking a full or half day off each week to drive a parent to a chemotherapy treatment.

When the leave is due to birth, adoption or placement for foster care, the leave can be taken all at once or intermittently providing it falls within the first twelve months after the birth or placement.

Eligible spouses and/or domestic partners employed by the College are jointly entitled to a combined total of twelve weeks of family leave for the birth or placement of a child, or to care for their seriously ill parent. For the care of a spouse, domestic partner or child with a serious health condition, or for the employee's own serious health condition, each spouse or domestic partner is entitled to a separate twelve week limit.

For an intermittent leave the College reserves the right to temporarily transfer the employee to an alternate position with equivalent pay and benefits if it would better accommodate recurring periods of leave.

14) Leave of absence rights available to you under other sections of our policy shall be counted towards the total time off available under this section. All applicable paid leave days such as sick (current and accumulated), personal, family illness, maternity & vacation must be used first. The balance of the twelve weeks will be unpaid. The employee may choose to retain five days of paid leave for future use.

15) Upon completion of a leave granted under this section, you shall be reinstated to your original position, or an equivalent one.

16) If, due to your own medical circumstances, you are no longer able to perform your original job, we will attempt to transfer you to alternate suitable work, if available.

17) While on a leave of absence provided for under this policy, we will continue your group health insurance benefits under the same terms as provided to other employees, for up to a maximum of 12 weeks leave time during any one year period. The employee must continue to pay their portion of the premium when due (i.e., payday). If your leave extends beyond 12 weeks, you shall be offered the opportunity to purchase continuing coverage under state and federal COBRA continuation rules.

The College will not continue to pay premiums for other benefits during the unpaid portion of the leave. However, the employee may pay the full cost of applicable premiums (employee and College portions) if they would like to continue coverage. Please contact the Office of Human Resources for additional information.

18) Other accumulated fringe benefits such as seniority, retirement, sick pay, vacation pay, etc., shall be preserved at the level earned as of commencement of the leave, but shall not accrue further during any such leave.

19) Should you require an extended leave beyond the period of time described in this policy, we will seek to return you to a suitable position, but cannot guarantee that one will be available.

20) Should you seek a Leave of Absence for reasons other than described above, we will evaluate such a request based on particular circumstances present at that time, including but not limited to your current and anticipated work responsibilities, performance, College needs, etc. Kenyon College reserves the right to refuse such a request at its sole discretion.

Military Family Leave Entitlements

Eligible employees with a spouse, son, daughter, or parent on active duty or call to active duty status in the National Guard or Reserves in support of a contingency operation may use their 12-week leave entitlement to address certain qualifying exigencies. Qualifying exigencies may include attending certain military events, arranging for alternative childcare, addressing certain financial and legal arrangements, attending certain counseling sessions, and attending post-deployment reintegration briefings.

FMLA also includes a special leave entitlement that permits eligible employees to take up to 26 weeks of leave to care for a covered service member during a single 12-month period. A covered service member is a current member of the Armed Forces, including a member of the National Guard or Reserves, who has a serious injury or illness incurred in the line of duty on active duty that may render the service member medically unfit to perform their duties for which the service member is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy; or is in outpatient status; or is on the temporary disability retired list.

Please contact the Assistant Director of Human Resources for additional information and to arrange the leave. You may be asked to provide documentation, including certification from military authorities.                Revised 2/2018

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Educational Leave of Absence

An educational leave of absence may be approved if the desired curriculum is of mutual benefit to you and to Kenyon College. Apply in the same manner as you would for a Personal Leave of Absence.

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Election Day

We encourage you to exercise your voting privileges in local, state, and national elections. However, since the polls are open for long periods, you are encouraged to vote before or after regular working hours. If it should be necessary, you may take up to two hours leave from work to vote in a governmental election or referendum. You will be expected to notify your supervisor at least one week in advance. You will not be paid for such time but you may use paid SPF or Vacation leave time, if available.

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Military Leave of Absence

Both U.S. and Ohio law provide protections to employees who are called to serve in the U.S. military.  If you are a full-time employee and are inducted into the U.S. Armed Forces, you will be eligible for re-employment after completing military service, providing you do the following: 

  1. You show your orders to the appropriate Kenyon administrator as soon as you receive them. Employees (including faculty members) should provide their orders to the Assistant Director of Human Resources, who can be reached at 740-427-5773.
  2. You satisfactorily complete your active duty service, generally within 5 years of leaving Kenyon.
  3. You enter the military service directly from your employment at Kenyon College.
  4. You apply for and are available for re-employment within ninety (90) days after discharge from active duty. If you are returning from up to six (6) months active duty for training, you must apply within a reasonable time (usually thirty (30) days) after discharge.

The Assistant Director of Human Resources will notify the appropriate personnel (e.g., supervisor, department heads) of the leave and will work with them to facilitate the re-employment process.                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Revised 2/2018

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Military Reserves or National Guard Leave of Absence

Employees who serve in U.S. military organizations (such as the National Guard, etc.) may take the necessary time off without pay to fulfill this obligation, and will retain all of their legal rights for continued employment under existing laws.  These employees may apply accrued personal leave and unused earned vacation time to the leave if they wish; however, they are not obliged to do so.  You are expected to notify the Assistant Director of Human Resources as soon as you are aware of the dates you will be on duty so that arrangements can be made for replacement during this absence and to ensure that you retain eligibility for re-employment.                                                                                            Revised 2/2018

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Personal Leave of Absence

In very special circumstances, Kenyon College may grant a leave for a personal reason, but never for taking employment elsewhere or going into business for yourself. You should request an unpaid personal leave of absence from your supervisor. A personal leave of absence must not interfere with the operations of your department or Kenyon. Your supervisor will submit your request to the appropriate member of Senior Staff for final approval.

A personal leave of absence may be granted for up to sixty (60) days. If your leave is extended for more than sixty (60) days, vacation and other benefits will no longer continue to accrue. You may remain on Kenyon's benefit programs if applicable, but you must pay the full cost (your portion and the College portion) of the benefit premiums. Failure to return from a leave at the time agreed will result in termination of employment.

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Accepting Other Employment or Going Into Business While on Leave of Absence

If you accept any employment or go into business while on a leave of absence from Kenyon College, you will be considered to have voluntarily resigned from employment with Kenyon as of the day on which you began your leave of absence.

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Insurance Premium Payment During Leaves of Absence

Kenyon College will continue to pay its share of health insurance premiums for employee coverage and dependent coverage for a maximum of 12 weeks during a Family/Medical Leave. While you are on any other type of unpaid leave of absence from Kenyon, you will be responsible for paying the total premiums for your coverage and that of your dependents while on leave. Failure to do so may result in loss of coverage and possible refusal by the insurance carrier to allow your coverage to be reinstated. Premiums in full for other benefits (life, disability, etc.) are the responsibility of the employee.

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