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Leaves of Absence

This information is intended to help you understand the types of leaves of absence that may be available to you, as well as provide information about benefits availability while you are on a leave of absence without salary.

Contact the Benefits team to discuss your options at if you are considering a Leave of Absence. If you email, please do not include confidential information.

Types of Leaves of Absence

Parental Leave

Parental leaves fall under the policies and procedures for the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and New Jersey Family Medical Leave Act (NJFLA). You are eligible for FMLA and NJFLA if you have worked for the University for one year and have worked at least 1,250 hours in the last 12 months prior to requesting leave.

Special Sick Leave

For eligibility requirements, please refer to the AFT collective negotiations agreement. If an employee is medically unable to work full time, but is capable of working a reduced load, the employee may be permitted to work at such reduced load, receive full pay, and use pro rated earned sick leave to make up the difference between the reduced workload and the regular full-time workload. Earned sick leave used in this manner shall be deemed Special Sick Leave. The President or his/her designee may require appropriate medical documentation that the employee can work part time but not full time. Additionally, the President or his/her designee may consider operational needs in deciding whether the employee may work on a part-time basis. An employee’s request to use Special Sick Leave shall not be unreasonably denied.

Extended Medical Leave

An Extended Sick Leave is a University policy that allows five or more consecutive days to be taken by an employee who has a serious health condition or to care for an immediate family member with a serious health condition. Absence may take up to a year (with appropriate medical documentation). This is distinct from the use of sick time on an incidental basis.


  • Family Medical Leaves have been exhausted and additional time is requested
  • Does not meet the FMLA/NJFLA requirements

Required Documents:

  • Medical documentation including estimated length of time to recovery and potential return to work date.
  • The University has the right to request monthly updates on an employee’s medical condition.
Pay :
  • Any earned paid time off (sick, vacation, personal, compensation) may be utilized during leave.
  • If no paid time off is available, leave will be without pay.
Health Benefits:
  • Health coverage will be maintained on the same terms while using earned time.
  • Employees will be responsible for their portion of health benefits premiums for six pay periods while on leave without pay.
  • Once the six pay periods have expired, the employee is responsible for full premium of health benefits while on leave without pay.

Personal Leave

A leave of absence without pay for personal reasons.


  • Must be a full or part-time employee at the University
  • Does not include temporary employees and Faculty


  • Without pay only
  • Employees will not earn pension service credit, will not receive or make pension contributions, and will not earn vacation or sick accruals while on unpaid leave.
Civil Service COVID-19 State of Emergency

The COVID-19 Sick Leave is an emergency adoption of temporary rule relaxations and modifications of the regulatory provisions concerning sick Leave (N.J.A.C 4A:6-1.3) Section 6 of Executive Order 103 (2020) issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This Leave was adopted on February 3, 2021. The Leave is retroactive to January 1, 2021 and ends thirty days following expiration of Executive Order 103.

Which employees are eligible for COVID-19 Sick Leave / Family Leave:

The order covers employees who are subject to Title 11 A Civil Service, which would include those individuals in the following unions:

  • CWA

Qualifying Reasons for Leave Related To COVD-19

An employee is entitled to take Leave related to COVID-19 if the employee is unable to work, including unable to telework, because the employee:

  1. Is subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19.
  1. Has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine or self-isolate related to COVID-19.
  1. Is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and is seeking a medical diagnosis, including but not limited to a test for COVID-19; or the employee has tested positive for COVID-19 and has not yet met the criteria for discontinuing isolation.
  1. the employee is the primary caretaker for an individual who is subject to an order as described in paragraph (1), who has been advised to self-quarantine or self-isolate as described in paragraph (3), or who is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis or has tested positive for COVID-19 as described in paragraph (4).
  1. Is caring for his or her child whose school or place of care is closed (or child care provider is unavailable) due to COVID-19 related reasons. (Employees who have been designated as essential by the appointing authority and unable to telework may still be required to report to the physical worksite).

Paid Leave Entitlements

  • NJ COVID-19 Sick Leave – Isolation, paid at 100%
  • NJ COVID-19 Sick Leave – Quarantine, paid at 100%
  • NJ COVID-19 Sick Leave – Care of Another, paid at 100%
    • To care for a spouse, civil partner, son/daughter, parent, parent-in-law, parental relationship
  • NJ COVID-19 Family Leave – Childcare up to 10 days, paid at 100%
  • NJ COVID-19 Sick Leave – Vaccination, 1 day, paid at 100%

Documentation needed:

When requesting COVID-19 Sick Leave or COVID-19 Family Leave, the employee shall present documentation to the employer, within five business days, as follows:

COVID-19 Sick Leave Quarantine or Isolation:

For COVID-19 Sick Leave due to the employee’s own illness or exposure to COVID-19 as set forth, the following is required:

  1. For Leave due to quarantine or isolation, the employee must provide the name of the government entity that issued the order; the employee must
  2. For Leave due to self-quarantine or self-isolation, the employee must provide the name of the health care provider who advised the employee to self-quarantine or self-isolate due to concerns over COVID-19 or proof of a positive COVID-19 test
  3. For Leave because the individual is experiencing symptoms and seeking a medical diagnosis, appropriate documentation from the medical provider

COVID-19 Care of Another

For COVID-19 Sick Leave due to care for quarantined or isolation order to which the individual being cared for is subject; or

  1. the name of the government entity that issued the quarantine or isolation order to which the individual being cared for is subject; or
  2. the name of the health care provider who advised the individual being cared for to self-quarantine self-isolate due to concerns related to COVID-19; or
  3. appropriate documentation from the medical provider where care is being provided to a symptomatic individual who is seeking a medical diagnosis, or proof of a positive COVID-19 test.

NJ COVID-19 Family Leave – Childcare

For COVID-19 Family Leave, where the employee is unable to work (including telework) because of the need to care for a child, as defined, for purposes

of this rule only, in N.J.S.A. 34:11B-3, under 18 years of age whose school has been closed to in-person instruction, or whose child care provider is unavailable, due to COVID-19 precautions, should provide within five business days:

  1. the name of the child being cared for;
  2. the name of the school that has been closed for in-person instruction or the child care provider that has been closed or become unavailable due to COVID-19; and
  3. a statement from the employee that no other suitable person is available to care for the child during the period for which the employee takes COVID-19 Family Leave

COVID-19 Sick Leave – Vaccination

For COVID-19 Sick Leave for vaccination purposes, the employee must submit documentation of vaccination. Please send a copy of your vaccination card to Occupational Health at

Civil Service Provision NoticeGot Questions?

Family and/or Medical Leave (FMLA/NJFLA)

Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), a federal law, provides 12 weeks of unpaid leave that protects you from negative impacts to your job when you take time off or a leave of absence for any of the following reasons:

  • Your own serious medical condition
  • Prenatal medical care or incapacity due to pregnancy and/or delivery
  • Time to bond with your new baby or newly placed adopted or foster child
  • Qualifying activities (exigencies) related to a family member’s military active duty
  • A serious injury or illness of a family member who is a current member of the armed forces or a veteran


You may be eligible for FMLA if you:

  • have worked for the University for at least 12 months as of the first day of leave; and
  • have worked for at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months prior to your first day of leave
FMLA Poster (PDF)

New Jersey Family Leave and Federal Family and Medical Leave (NJFLA)

The New Jersey Family Leave Act (NJFLA) is a state law that allows employees to take up to 12 weeks of leave during a 24 month period for any of the following reasons:

  • To bond with a child within 1 year of the child’s birth or placement for adoption or foster care;
  • To care for a family member who has a serious health condition or has been isolated or quarantined because of suspected exposure to a communicable disease during a state of emergency
  • To provide care or treatment for a child if the child’s school or place of care is closed by order of the Governor or a public official due to an epidemic of a communicable disease (such as COVID-19) or other public health emergency

*Family member means a child, parent, parent-in-law, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, spouse, domestic partner or partner in civil union, any other individual related by blood or marriage.

Time off under this leave is job protected and can be taken on an Intermittent basis.


You may be eligible for NJFLA if you:

  • have worked for the University for at least 12 months as of the first day of leave ; and
  • have worked for at least 1,000 hours in the 12 months prior to the first day of leave
NJFLA Poster (PDF)

Intermittent Leave

An employee does not need to use this leave entitlement in one block. Leave can be taken intermittently or on a reduced leave schedule when medically necessary. Employees must make reasonable efforts to schedule leave for planned medical treatment so as not to unduly disrupt the employer’s operations. Leave due to qualifying exigencies may also be taken on an intermittent basis.

New Jersey Security and Financial Empowerment Act (NJ SAFE)

The New Jersey Security and Financial Empowerment Act (NJ SAFE Act), P.L. 2013, c.82, which provides that certain employees are eligible to receive an unpaid leave of absence – for a period not to exceed 20 days in a 12-month period – to address circumstances resulting from domestic violence or a sexually violent offense.

The purpose of the law to is allow employees who are assault victims or are caring for family members who are victims to have time to engage in the following activities associated with the incident without fear of losing their jobs:

  1. Seeking medical attention for, or recovering from, physical or psychological injuries
  2. Obtaining services from victim assistance programs
  3. Obtaining psychological or other counseling
  4. Participating in safety planning, temporarily or permanently relocating, or taking other steps to increase the safety of themselves or the victim
  5. Seeking legal assistance
  6. Participating in civil or criminal court proceedings related to the incident of domestic or sexual violence.

Eligibility for NJ Safe Act

  • The employee must work for the employer for at least 12 months and have worked 1,000 hours or more during the preceding 12-month period.
  • Leave under the NJ SAFE Act must be taken within one year of the incident of domestic violence or sexual assault and may be taken intermittently with employer approval in intervals of no less than one day.

The unpaid leave shall run concurrently with any paid vacation leave, personal leave, or sick leave that the employee elects to use during any part of the 20 day period.

New Jersey law prohibits retaliation against employees for the exercise of rights granted by the Act. For further details on the qualifying reasons, eligibility criteria, and employers’ and employees’ notice obligations under the Act, please see the NJ SAFE Act poster.

If you have any additional questions about the NJ SAFE Act, please do not hesitate to contact the benefits office at

Paid Time Off During Leave

Possible pay continuation options during leave include:

Sick Time Off May be required
Vacation Time Off Optional
Personal Time Off Optional
Compensatory Time Off Optional

If you will no longer be paid by Montclair State University, you have the following options through State of New Jersey disability programs:

Note: While on an unpaid leave of absence from Montclair State University, employees will not earn pension service credit, will not receive or make pension contributions, and will not earn vacation or sick accruals.

If you don’t have enough accrued paid time off, you may qualify for the Donated Leave Program. Criteria for shared leave eligibility are different than those for FMLA.

Additional Information

Health Benefits Coverage During Leave

To continue medical, prescription drug and dental coverage, you must pay required premiums.

While On Unpaid Leave

The Benefits Enrollment section of Human Resources will bill you for medical, prescription drug and dental coverage.

For Leave of Absence Due to Illness and Family Leave

You will be responsible for your usual medical and/or prescription payroll deductions for the six pay periods of leave without pay. During FMLA leave, the employer must maintain the employee’s health coverage under any “group health plan” on the same terms as if the employee had continued to work.

For Personal Leave of Absence Without Pay

You will be responsible both yours and the University’s premiums up to six pay periods.

Continuation of Coverage Under COBRA

If coverage with the University ends while you are on leave, continuation of coverage is offered under COBRA for up to 18 months

  • You will receive a notice about continuation of coverage under COBRA at the time your coverage ends
  • When you return to active status, health coverage is reinstated if enrollment forms are submitted
Requesting a Leave of Absence


  • Give at least 30 days’ notice, if you know in advance of your need for a leave of absence.
  • If you learn of your need for time off or a leave of absence less than 30 days ahead of time, request it as soon as you are able.

You do not need to tell your supervisor any specifics about your health circumstances or those of your family member. However, you do need to provide enough information so that your supervisor can understand that your absence may be covered by the FMLA.

Submitting Your FMLA Request

Employees may request a leave of absence within Workday. View Workday Resources for instructions on how to enter a leave of absence request.

Required Documentation

If your absence is for your own, or a family member’s health condition, or for the arrival of a new child, you will need to submit a health-care provider certification form, supporting your need for a leave of absence. Medical documentation is not required for Bonding Leave (if using vacation time).

  • The form must be returned to HR within 15 days of receipt. Because the information is so time sensitive, it must be completed 30 days from the leave start date. Any submission before 30 days will expire and will need to completed by physician again.

Medical conditions can change and sometimes you don’t know how much FMLA leave you will need to take. You and your (or your family member’s) health care provider need to provide the best estimate of the length of time or frequency of absences you will need based on what is known at the time. If you require more or less leave than you originally thought, you can always provide an updated certification.

If your absence is for a personal leave of absence, an approval of supervisor, and Vice President of division is required.


The Office of Employee Benefits will keep confidential all medical information relating to requests for a medical leave. This information will be used only to make decisions in regards to the provisions of the policy.

  • You should not disclose your own or your family member’s medical diagnosis to your supervisor or department.
  • Any required certification should be submitted directly to the benefits department, where it will be kept confidential and separate from your personnel file. Do not submit any medical documentation to supervisor.
Returning to Work

If your leave is for your medical condition, you will be required to provide a Fitness for Duty Certification. This release is to include any restrictions or limitations you have in performing your job. A release to return to work is not required if the Leave of Absence is for a family member’s health condition.