Leave Policy for Postdoctoral Fellows

Benefits-eligible postdoctoral research fellows are eligible for parental and medical leave as detailed below. All leaves must be coordinated with the postdoc’s faculty supervisor and department and require that the postdoc complete the appropriate leave form(s). Because paid leaves may be extended or supplemented by a postdoc’s accrued vacation and personal time, as specified below, postdocs and departments are urged to maintain accurate records of paid time off accruals. Leave benefits terminate on the last day of an appointment.

Maternity Leave:

Birth mothers are eligible for up to thirteen weeks of paid maternity leave following the birth of a child. The first eight weeks of maternity leave are financed by the university’s Disability Claims Unit; the next four weeks are parental leave and are financed by the department; the final or thirteenth week is covered by the postdoc’s accrued vacation or personal time, if available.

For postdocs with seven or more years of service, the rate of leave pay is 100% of the regular base pay. For postdocs with fewer than seven years of service, the rate of leave pay is 75% of the regular base pay.  During the four weeks of parental leave, these postdocs may choose to supplement their leave pay with accrued vacation or personal time.

Parental Leave:

Non-birth parents are eligible for up to four weeks of paid parental leave following the birth or adoption of a child. Parental leave is financed by the school (2/3) and department (1/3).

For those appointees with seven or more years of service, the rate of leave pay is 100% of the regular base pay. For those appointees with fewer than seven years of service, the rate of leave pay is 75% of the regular base pay; these appointees may choose to supplement their leave pay with accrued vacation or personal time.

A Parental Leave Form (PDF) must be completed by the appointee, signed by the department administrator, and submitted to Jennifer Moltoni, Office of Faculty Affairs, 90 Smith Street, 1st floor.

Medical Leave:

Postdocs unable to work due to a medically determined physical or mental impairment are eligible for up to twenty-six weeks of paid medical leave. There is a two-week waiting period before institutional coverage begins; vacation or personal time accrued by the postdoc can be used to cover this waiting period. This two-week waiting period is followed by a maximum of twenty-four weeks of paid time off, which is financed by the university’s Disability Claims Unit.

For those postdocs with seven or more years of service, the rate of leave pay is 100% of the regular base pay. For those postdocs with fewer than seven years of service, the rate of leave pay is 75% of the regular base pay.

Family and Medical Leave Act

In addition to the paid leave policies described above, the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) provides an eligible employee with up to twelve weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons. A regular employee who works at least 17.5 hours per week is entitled to up to twelve weeks of Family and Medical Leave during a rolling twelve-month period in the following situations:

  • Care for the employee’s child after birth or placement with the appointee for adoption or foster care.
  • A serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform the essential functions of her/his job.
  • Care for the employee’s spouse (or qualified domestic partner), child (including the dependent child of a qualified domestic partner), or parent with a serious health condition.

Absences from work for the above-stated reasons will be considered as Family and Medical Leave and will count toward fulfillment of the twelve weeks.

A Request for Family and Medical Leave Form (PDF) must be completed by the postdoc, signed by the department administrator, and submitted to the Office of Faculty Affairs, 90 Smith Street, 1st floor.