Leaves of absence FAQs
This page is meant to be a helpful “what if” guide outlining typical leaves and Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leaves of absences with the City School District of Albany. As each leave is unique to each person and the underlying variables for each leave vary, the following information should not be considered a definitive roadmap. Human Resources will discuss the likely scenario(s) with you when you notify us of your leave.
In most cases you will be required to use your benefit accruals while you are out. This determination is made in accordance with your union contract. If you have benefit accruals and you are using them, you will be paid. If you have exhausted your accruals, or the nature of your leave is unpaid (i.e. care of family), you will roll into “unpaid” status.
You will continue to get paid as long as you have benefit accruals to cover your leave and as long as your leave of absence/accrual use meets union contract guidelines. Pay for days absent will continue, deductions will continue to be deducted and paychecks will continue to be issued as they have (i.e. direct deposit or school delivery). Additionally, if you chose the 26 pay check option and remain in paid status, your summer check will be issued as usual in June.
If you are on an unpaid leave of absence, you will roll into “unpaid” status. At that time, you will receive a final proration from the district. This proration will in essence be as if you are leaving the district, meaning all deductions, outstanding balances and pay owed will be caught up. This proration will likely affect your summer check and paychecks moving forward upon your return.
If you are on a leave of absence due to a worker’s compensation injury, you still may be eligible for paid leave and FMLA. In most cases, you will be required to use your benefit accruals. If you have exhausted your available accruals, you may then be eligible for payments directly from our worker’s compensation insurance carrier, Corvel. You should work with both your Corvel claims adjuster and Human Resources regarding navigating this type of leave.
If your unpaid leave of absence is designated as FMLA, you can continue your insurance coverage up to a total of 12 work weeks. After you have exhausted your 12 work weeks of FMLA, your insurance will cease effective the end of the month that you exhausted your FMLA. If your unpaid leave of absence is not designated as FMLA, your benefits will cease effective the end of the month that you enter unpaid status.
Depending on the timing of your leave, the district will attempt to collect a lump sum of your insurance deductions from your final check before falling into unpaid status. If the district is unable to collect it from your final check, you may receive a separate invoice in the mail, or the district will collect your outstanding premiums upon your return to work.
If your insurance is terminated due to your unpaid leave of absence, you will be eligible to participate in COBRA. This information will be mailed to your mailing address on file directly from Benetech, the district’s benefits administrator. If you have not received the information within 30 days of falling off payroll, please contact Human Resources.
When you return, if you remained on payroll for the duration of your leave, your paychecks and insurance deductions will continue as normal. However, if you have fallen off payroll during your leave, upon your return you will likely see a reduced paycheck and different insurance deductions based on your current contribution to date.
3-6 months prior
- Notify Human Resources (HR) of your upcoming leave of absence via letter or email
- Discuss with HR any questions or concerns you have about your leave and the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) process
- Notify your administrator of your upcoming leave of absence
- Once you notify HR of your upcoming leave of absence, HR will draft you FMLA paperwork which will be mailed or emailed to you within 5 business days
- Once you receive your initial FMLA paperwork, you then have 15 calendar days to gather the requested documentation and return it to HR
- Upon receipt, HR will review and if everything is in order, will send out an approval letter within 5 business days of receiving the completed documentation
- If denied or incomplete, HR will respond to you with a decision or request additional information
- HR will notify your principal, supervisor and Payroll of your approved upcoming leave
- Once HR has approved your leave, HR will add your leave of absence to Absence Management, or reconcile your absences
Once the child arrives
- Notify HR and your building if your leave started sooner or later than expected
- If your leave started sooner than expected, notify your building and contact HR to discuss the documentation that is needed to revise your leave
- If your leave started later than expected, work with your building secretary to delete any pre-recorded absences you may need deleted. Contact HR to discuss the documentation that is needed to revise your leave
- Upon receipt of documentation, HR will revise your leave accordingly and notify the necessary parties (as listed above)
- If you wish to extend your leave of absence after the initial approved time off, notify HR immediately in writing.
- If you wish to add your new child onto your District insurance coverage, contact HR within 30 days of your child’s birth, or adoption.
- If you are adding a newborn onto your insurance, HR needs the completed benefits application return within 30 days of their birth. A child’s Social Security Number and a copy of their Birth Certificate are also required, but can be sent at a later time if they are not immediately available.
- If you are adding an adopted child, be sure to contact HR within 30 days of when you are granted custody of the child, or 30 days of when your child’s adoption is finalized. Speak with HR regarding what court documentation is required.