Sick Time Pay
The University provides paid sick time based on employment status, length of service and prior usage. Sick pay is available to assist regular staff members who are unable to work because of personal illness or injury, pregnancy, childbirth, or absence for preventive medical and dental care; or to provide care for an incapacitated, ill, or injured family member. Short-term sick time pay is also available for employees who are not eligible for paid parental leave, and who are unable to work because they are bonding with their newly born, newly adopted, newly fostered, or newly appointed legal guardian child.
Sick time pay (regular compensation plus shift premium if applicable) is available to full-time staff members as follows:
To be eligible for sick time pay, a staff member must meet the following requirements.
- Have unused sick time available.
- Comply with the reporting and approval procedures.
- Be absent from regular work for one of the following reasons:
- Disabling Conditions
- Disabling physical illness or injury.
- Disabling mental illness or treatment for an alcohol or drug abuse problem that is being treated on an:
- in-patient basis in an accredited hospital facility licensed to provide psychiatric or substance abuse care or,
- out-patient basis, while the staff member is unable to work, based on the recommendation of an appropriate physician or a licensed mental health provider.
- Disabling conditions resulting from pregnancy, miscarriage, abortion, or childbirth.
- Preventive Care
- Preventive or corrective medical care for non-disabling mental illness or an alcohol or drug abuse problem that is treated on an out-patient basis on the recommendation of an appropriate physician or a licensed mental health provider. Time off must be scheduled and approved in advance by the staff member's immediate supervisor. Only short term sick time may be used for such treatment.
- Preventive or corrective medical care, dental care, and physical examination appointments. Appointments must be scheduled and approved in advance by the staff member's immediate supervisor.
Exposure to a contagious disease if quarantine is required by a government health authority or the University.
Family Care Responsibilities
Available short term sick time pay may be used to care for a family member whose condition meets any of the circumstances described above. “Family member” is defined as the staff member's spouse or other qualified adult; the child, sibling, parent, grandparent, grandchild or other individual whose care is the responsibility of the staff member, spouse, or other qualified adult.
The definition of “other qualified adult” can be found at: https://hr.umich.edu/oqa.
Birth, Adoption or Foster Placement of a Child
Employees not eligible for parental leave (e.g. probationary employees) may use available short term sick time pay, not to exceed fifteen days, to care for or bond with a newly born, adopted or foster child, or newly appointed legal guardian child, within one year of the child’s birth or arrival in the home.
Domestic Violence or Sexual Assault
An employee who is the victim of domestic or sexual assault is eligible to use sick time pay for medical care, psychological or other counseling: to obtain victim services; to relocate, to obtain legal services or to participate in any civil or criminal proceedings related to or resulting from the domestic violence or sexual assault. An employee may also use short-term sick to care for a family member who is a victim of domestic violence or sexual assault for the reasons outlined in the previous sentence.
Declared Public Health Emergency
Employees are eligible to use sick time pay for purposes relating to closure of the workplace or child’s school due to a declared public health emergency.
- Disabling Conditions
Short-term sick time pay
- Regular staff members are eligible for up to 15 days (120 hours) of short term sick time pay annually to cover illnesses or injuries which have a limited duration of 10 consecutive days or less.
- The 15 days of annual short term sick time do not accrue but are renewed annually on the first of the month of the anniversary of employment1. The short term sick bank is renewed for bi-weekly employees at the beginning of the pay period which includes the first day of the month noted above.
- To receive short term sick pay staff members must report the absence to their supervisor prior to the beginning of their shift, except when the failure to notify is due to circumstances beyond the control of the staff member. The notice will include the reason for and expected duration of the absence.
- Evidence of illness or injury acceptable to the University may be required at any time as a condition for qualifying for short term sick time pay, including absences due to family care responsibilities.
- An employee who is absent from work due to their own non-FMLA qualifying illness or injury and has exhausted his or her short term sick time pay, but has not met the eligibility requirements for extended sick time pay, will, by default, be paid out of his or her vacation accrual if any is available. At the staff member’s request, excused absence without pay may be used during that period.
Extended sick time pay
Extended sick time pay provides wage protection for regular staff members who are unable to work for an extended period of time due to a single incident of serious disabling illness or injury or for chronic disabling serious conditions when periodic absences from work are necessary due to a serious health condition. Extended sick time pay starts with the first day of a qualifying illness or injury and is available only when all of the following conditions are met:
In special circumstances, such as conditions related to pregnancy or where the staff member's physician has attested that the staff member will have ongoing non-contiguous absences due to treatment for a single serious illness or injury, the University may approve the use of extended sick time pay for such non-contiguous absences that total in excess of 10 working days.
Regular staff members with one (1) or more years of continuous service are eligible for extended sick time pay up to a maximum of six (6) months at full pay plus six (6) months at half pay in each five (5) calendar year period following the attainment of the service requirement. Extended sick time benefits are renewed in full on the first of the month of the anniversary of employment following each successive five (5) calendar year period for monthly paid employees2. Extended sick time is renewed for bi-weekly employees at the beginning of the pay period which includes the first of the month noted above.
Extended Sick Benefits for U-M Hospitals and Health Centers (HHC) staff may be found at http://www.med.umich.edu/i/policies/umh/04-06-010.html.
- The staff member has worked for the University for one or more years as a regular staff member.
- The staff member is absent due to a serious and/or chronic disabling illness or injury in excess of 10 consecutive working days.
- Acceptable supporting documentation from a physician has been received by Work Connections or the employing department.
- Special Situation - Employees on Sponsored Projects: Charges related to extended sick time pay are not allowable expenses on sponsored activity. The University maintains a central fund to cover these expenses. In order to be eligible for this coverage, the employee must report the qualifying illness/injury to Work Connections which will verify the qualifying medical disability, expected duration of absence and any work restrictions, and inform the employing unit of the Extended Sick Time eligibility.
Limitations and Exclusions
- The maximum number of sick days available for any one continuous illness or injury is fifteen (15) days of short term plus six (6) months at full pay and six (6) months at half pay minus any sick time previously taken during the one (1) year short term sick time period and/or the five (5) years extended sick time period in effect at the time the illness or injury occurs.
- Renewal of Benefits. Eligibility for renewal of extended sick time benefits (during any period of absence, layoff, or any period of absence due to illness or injury) is deferred until the staff member returns to active employment. Usage of extended sick time pay is further deferred for 30 days following a return to active employment from an absence due to illness or injury.
- Part-time Staff Members: Proportional amounts of paid short term and extended sick time pay are available to part-time staff members who are scheduled to work 20% (8 hours a week) or more.
- Continuous Service: Continuous service means service from the latest date of hire as a regular staff member. Times of absence and layoffs are not considered breaks in service for this purpose. However, the period of time of absence or layoff may not be counted in meeting the one year of service requirement. The one year of service must have been accumulated as of the last day worked.
- Worker's Compensation: Full pay is reduced by worker’s compensation benefits, if any, to provide not more than 100% of salary. The staff member's sick time pay record will be charged for the number of days equivalent to the amount of sick time pay received.
- Failure to Follow Accepted Medical Practice: Arbitrary failure to follow accepted medical practice will be reason for discontinuing pay under this plan.
- Regular or Frequent Absence Because of Illness or Injury: If illness or injury recurs frequently or regularly so as to raise a question about a staff member’s general state of health, or there is arbitrary failure to follow accepted medical practice, the University may require the staff member to see a personal physician at the staff member’s expense. The physician will provide the University with a statement concerning the health problem, the treatment required and what can be expected. If the University determines that a second opinion is needed the staff member may be required to see a physician designated by the University at University expense.
- No short term or extended sick time is payable if illness or injury results from or occurs as follows: war, insurrection, rebellion, participation in a riot or civil commotion, engaging in any criminal act, intentionally self-inflicting an injury for fraudulent purposes, working for an employer other than the University, or during a time of leave of absence, layoff, or disciplinary layoff.
- Use of Sick Time During Scheduled Vacation: Although staff members may meet the sick time pay eligibility requirements while on vacation, they have not lost time from regular work and are therefore not eligible for pay under this plan. Under unusual circumstances, such as hospitalization or equivalent confinement for their own illness/injury, the staff member may request the use of paid sick time. Such a request must be accompanied by a physician's verification of disability and is subject to approval by supervision and review by the appropriate University Human Resources Office.
- Holidays: Staff members who are off work in accordance with this plan on a day observed by the University as a holiday will be considered observing that holiday. They will not be charged for sick time pay on that day.
- Termination and Layoffs: Eligibility for pay under this plan ceases on the effective date of a termination or layoff (i.e., the last day of work). Staff members recalled to active employment from layoff status will again be eligible for the benefits provided by this plan (see SPG 201.72).
- Retirement: Staff members may elect to terminate regular employment while receiving sick time pay and receive instead any retirement benefits for which they are eligible.
- A transfer to another position providing eligibility for pay under this plan will not affect the staff member’s balance of available time.
- A staff member transferred to a position providing eligibility for sick time pay under a different sick time plan will be placed in the new plan with the amount of protection determined by the provisions of the new plan reduced by recorded past usage in this plan.
- A staff member transferred to this plan from a position providing eligibility under different rules will be placed in this plan as follows;
- Individuals with less than one year of University service at time of transfer will be eligible for 15 days of short term sick time pay on the date of transfer to be renewed annually on the first of the month in which the staff member’s employment anniversary occurs. Eligibility for 6 months at full pay and 6 months at half pay will begin on the first of the month in which the first employment anniversary as a regular employee occurs.
- Individuals with one or more years of University service as a regular employee at time of transfer will be eligible for 15 days of short term sick time pay and the 6 months full pay and 6 months half pay benefit on the date of transfer. Short term sick time will renew annually on the irst of the month in which date of transfer occurred. Extended sick pay will renew every five calendar years on the first of the month in which the date of transfer occurred.
Return to Work
- A staff member returning to active employment from an extended sick time absence which exceeds one month should provide at least seven days advance notice to their supervisor. Upon return they will be placed in the same or another available position within the department for which they are qualified, unless the University's or the employee's circumstances have so changed as to make it impossible to do so. If the return causes a displacement of any staff member (including the returning staff member), the displaced staff member will be placed or laid off in accordance with the priorities established in the SPG 201.72.
- A staff member returning to active employment from a sick time absence of less than one month will be placed in their former position unless the University's or the employee's circumstances have so changed as to make it impractical to do so.
The University encourages and may require staff with disabling conditions to undertake rehabilitation programs that may be beneficial to them. University Human Resources will aid in identifying rehabilitating programs as needed.
Services are available to assist with counseling regarding self-management of medical conditions, worksite assessments, coordination of job search efforts, and coordination of job accommodations.
- Reduced hours of work:
- Staff members who are returned to active employment with temporary or permanent medical restrictions on hours of work will be eligible to use their available short term and/or extended sick time pay to maintain their income based on their appointment prior to their illness or injury. For example, a staff member who is only able to work one-half time would, for each day of work, be paid 4 hours of sick pay and 4 hours of pay for time worked, whether eligible for extended sick pay at either full pay or half pay.
- Staff members working a reduced schedule who exhaust available sick time will have their appointment adjusted to reflect the medical restriction. Their available sick time will renew on the regular eligibility date, but with sicktime proportional to the appointment fraction permitted by their medical restriction.
Continuation of Benefit Plans
- For each month the staff member received more than half their normal salary under this plan, including the use of vacation time to supplement the 50% pay provision of this policy, deductions and contribution practices will be the same as when actively working.
- For each calendar month in which the only pay received is half normal salary pay under this plan, the University’s and the staff member’s share of contributions to the Retirement, Group Life Insurance, and Health Insurance programs in which the staff member participated at the time of illness or injury and at the level provided by salary at the time of illness or injury will continue based on one-half salary. Eligibility for Health and Life Insurance will continue even when the one-half pay reflects less than a fifty percent (50%) appointment.
Accrual of Vacation Benefits
- Vacation continues to accrue on time paid under the short term sick time plan.
- Vacation time does not accrue on time paid under the extended sick time plan. A staff member who is scheduled to work 20% (8 hours) or more per week while receiving extended sick time pay is eligible for vacation accrual for time worked on a proportionate basis. Vacation accrual for partial calendar months of work is governed by SPG 01.64-0.
1(Except that the renewal date is July 1, for those who were classified as P/A and Technical staff members who had two or more years continuous services as of July 1, 1975, and January 1 for those Office staff members who had two or more years of service as of January 7, 1990.)
2(Except that the renewal date is July 1, following each successive five (5) calendar year period for those classified as P/A and Technical staff members who were employed and eligible on or before July 1, 1975 and January 1 for those classified as Office Staff members who were employed on or before January 7, 1990.
Updated November 2023 to clarify use of short term sick during scheduled vacation
Updated March 29, 2019, to reflect new eligibility and uses for sick time pay in Section I. A. 3. d, f and g.: added grandchild for family care responsibilities; added domestic violence and sexual assault situations, and declared public health emergencies as acceptable uses for sick time pay.
Updated September 2018 to clarify impact of Paid Parental Leaves SPG 201.30-6.
NOTE: Effective May 1, 2018, the former requirement in Section I. A. 3. a. that treatment for mental health conditions must be provided only by a Psychiatrist or PhD. Psychologist is rescinded. Approved mental health providers include other licensed mental health providers: (Licensed Masters Social Workers (LMSW), Limited Licensed Psychologist (LLP), and licensed Nurse Practitioners (NP) and Physician Assistants (PA) as appropriate.