Benefits-Eligible Other Academic Appointees
 
Sick Leave
 
If you are a benefits-eligible Other Academic Appointees (OAA), you may take up to two work weeks (10 work days) of paid Sick Leave per calendar year (i.e., each January through December) for any of the purposes described in Section C of this policy. You must use your Sick Leave concurrently with FMLA leave, if applicable. Absences of less than one full day are not deducted from a benefits-eligible OAA’s Sick Leave allotment. Your Sick Leave does not carry over from year to year and is not paid out at the end of your employment.
 
Temporary COVID-19 Enhancement for Benefits-Eligible Other Academic Appointees (adopted 4/10/2020 and retroactive to 3/19/2020. This Enhancement is effective for the duration of Spring Quarter and may be extended beyond 6/30/2020.)
 
While you honor and maintain your commitment to the University, we also want to ensure that those who are unable to work during Spring Quarter because of COVID-19 may take paid leave when necessary. Those individuals may be eligible for up to 6 weeks, based upon regularly scheduled hours, of paid time that can be used for reasons related to COVID-19. These reasons include:
  • personal illness due to COVID-19,
  • the responsibility to care for a Family Member who is ill with COVID-19,
  • in accord with Uses of Sick Leave (see below), the need to care for a Family Member,
  • the need to quarantine as directed by federal, state, or local order and/or as advised by a healthcare provider, or
  • the inability to work remotely.
This time shall also count as leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), if applicable. Use of this time must be requested in writing and reviewed and approved in writing by the section chief (if applicable), department chair, or collegiate master; by the director or dean; and by the Provost’s Office.
 
If an OAA uses all 6 weeks and needs additional time off, they may use their remaining paid short-term disability leave (see below), which shall count as leave under the FMLA, if applicable, or from any available vacation time. If the OAA exhausts this time, the University will make available an additional 14 days of leave.
 
Requests for the temporary COVID-19 enhancement benefit must be made in writing as soon as practicable. Each request will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. Instructors may request to be relieved of duties not related to the teaching of a course even if they continue to teach their assigned courses. Depending on the timing and duration of the leave, a course may be assigned to another person with the approval of the Office of the Provost.  
 
Enhancement ends; existing policy resumes.
 
Short-Term Disability Leave

Short-term disability (STD) leave is a University benefit that provides a portion of your salary and continuity of benefits if you are ill or disabled and cannot work and you have exhausted your Sick Leave. The cost of this benefit is covered by the University. All benefits-eligible Other Academic Appointees (OAA) who have worked at the University in a benefits-eligible capacity for at least the six months immediately preceding the illness or disability are eligible for STD; School of Medicine Faculty are covered under the BSD faculty sick leave policy. Visitors are not eligible for STD.

To be eligible for STD, your illness or disability cannot be work-related1 or pregnancy-related2, you must be in-residence, and you must be unable to work.

After your Sick Leave is exhausted, you will begin to receive STD benefits, paid at 60% of your base salary (minus deductions for taxes, benefits, etc.). You may receive up to 11 weeks of STD payments. STD does not extend beyond the end of your appointment. The 11 weeks of STD count toward the 12 weeks of leave required by the Family and Medical Leave Act, if applicable. At all times during your STD leave, you will maintain all benefits in which you are enrolled, provided that you continue to pay your share of applicable premiums. If you receive a term allowance and/or administrative supplement, those salary components automatically terminate on day 30 of the 13-week STD period.

As soon as it appears that your illness or disability may extend beyond 13 weeks, you must contact your chair or dean, who must then contact the Provost’s Office, to discuss your options, including applying for long-term disability benefits, and what will happen to your salary and benefits. All STD salary and benefits will be discontinued after the 13th week following your initial absence. If your LTD application is pending and your appointment has not ended, you may request an unpaid leave of absence.

If it is possible to give notice of your planned STD, as is often the case with surgery, please complete your paperwork well in advance of your absence. If you are unable to provide advance notice, you must submit your paperwork within two weeks of your first day of absence, sooner if possible.

Benefits-Ineligible Other Academic Appointees 

If you are a benefits-ineligible OAA, you will earn five hours of paid Sick Leave in every month in which you perform compensable duties or the University pays you as an academic appointee. Your Sick Leave may be used each calendar year for absences discussed in Section C of this policy. 
 
For benefits-ineligible OAA:
  • The Sick Leave year is each January through December.
  • Sick Leave accrual is capped at 40 hours per year.
  • A maximum of 60 hours of accrued Sick Leave may be carried over from year to year.
  • A maximum of 60 hours of accrued Sick Leave may be used within one year.
  • Sick Leave must be used concurrently with FMLA leave, if applicable, and is not paid out at the end of employment.
  • Absences of less than one full day are not deducted from your accrued Sick Leave. 
Temporary COVID-19 Enhancement (adopted 4/10/2020 and retroactive to 3/19/2020. This Enhancement is effective for the duration of Spring Quarter and may be extended beyond 6/30/2020.)
 
Salaried benefits-ineligible OAA shall be issued an additional 40 hours of sick leave as of the effective date of this temporary enhancement. The benefits-ineligible OAA need not accrue this time as stated above, however only a maximum of 15 of the 40 hours may be carried over to 2021. This sick leave may be used to cover courses missed due to: 
  • the need to quarantine as directed by federal, state, or local order and/or as advised by a healthcare provider,
  • personal illness due to COVID-19,
  • the responsibility to care for a Family Member who is ill with COVID-19, or
  • in accord with Uses of Sick Leave (see below), the need to care for a Family Member.
Requests for the temporary COVID-19 enhancement benefit must be made in writing as soon as practicable to your immediate supervisor, department chair, or collegiate master. Each request will be assessed on a case-by-case basis by the Dean’s Office and the Office of the Provost. Depending on the timing and duration of the leave, a course may be assigned to another person.  
 
Enhancement ends; existing policy resumes.
 
Uses of Sick Leave

Sick Leave may be used for absences for the OAA’s own medical care, treatment, diagnosis, or preventive medical care. It may also be used for absences due to a Family Member’s (as defined below) illness or injury or to care for a Family Member receiving medical care, treatment, diagnosis, or preventive medical care. OAA may also use Sick Leave if they or a Family Member are a victim of domestic violence or a sex offense or if they need to care for a child whose school or place of care has been closed by order of a public official due to a public health emergency.

For the purposes of this policy, “Family Member” means an OAA’s child, legal guardian, ward, spouse under the laws of any state, domestic partner, parent, spouse or domestic partner’s parent, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, or any other individual related by blood or whose close association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship. A child includes not only a biological relationship, but also a relationship resulting from an adoption, step-relationship, and/or foster care relationship, or a child to whom the employee stands in loco parentis. A parent includes a biological, foster, stepparent, adoptive parent, legal guardian of an employee, or a person who stood in loco parentis when the employee was a minor child. Please note that this definition of “Family Member” does not apply to any other University policy, except where stated. 


1. Compensation for absences caused by work-related injuries is covered exclusively under the University’s Workers’ Compensation program and as required by law. Click here for more information on work-related injuries and illnesses http://hr.uchicago.edu/benefits/spds/workcomp/.
2. Parental leave for OAA is covered under the following policies https://provost.uchicago.edu/handbook/clause/parental-leave-other-academic-appointees.
 
Policy effective: 1 April 2010
Last revisted: 19 October 2017