Under the catastrophic leave program, university employees may voluntarily donate unused vacation, banked sabbatical, leave banked in an Annual Leave Reserve Account, personal holidays or legal holidays to colleagues within their employment group who have been granted unpaid leaves of absence due to a catastrophic need. Leave may not be exchanged between classified and unclassified employees of the University.
Catastrophic need is defined as an illness or injury that incapacitates the employee or his/her immediate family member and that requires the employee to take time off from work for an extended period of time.
For a catastrophic leave summary for your employment group, select one of the following:
The program permits classified employees to donate certain types and amounts of leave credits to other classified employees who have been granted an unpaid leave of absence on account of a catastrophic need for which absence there is no paid leave benefits or replacement income available, and that creates a financial hardship for the employee.
Administration of the Catastrophic Leave Program
Wisconsin Statute 230.35(2)(r) provides authority for the Office of State Employment Relations to establish a catastrophic leave program for classified state and university employees. The administration of the program for classified employees is outlined in both ER 18.15 of Administrative Code and Chapter 660 of the Wisconsin Human Resources Handbook. Union-represented classified employees also have catastrophic leave benefits outlined in their applicable bargaining agreement.
- Recipient must be covered by Catastrophic Leave provisions under a collective bargaining agreement or s. ER 18.15, Wis.Admin.Code.
- Recipient must have completed the first six months of original probation period in a permanent position or six months in a project position, must remain a state employee and must NOT be an LTE.
- Recipient must be on an approved unpaid leave of absence of at least 160-hours duration due to a catastrophic need (prorated for part-time employees). The unpaid leave may be taken in non-continuous increments.
- Recipient must provide medical certification of the catastrophic need if your employer or union requires it and obtain approval from appropriate authority.
- Recipient must have a leave balance of no more than 16 hours of combined accrued leave, including sabbatical/termination leave and personal/legal holiday credits and have used all available sick leave credits.
- Recipient must not be receiving other salary replacement income or benefits such as income continuation insurance or Worker's Compensation
- Recipients may not receive more than 640 hours per calendar year, prorated for part-time.
- Value of the leave is based on the recipient's hourly salary.
Classified Catastrophic Leave Recipients should complete the application form approved by the Office of State Employment Relations.
- Donor must be a classified civil service employee - classified employees can only donate leave to other classified employees (cannot donate leave to unclassified UW employees, such as faculty or academic staff)
- Donor must be covered by Catastrophic Leave provisions under a collective bargaining agreement or s. ER 18.15, Wisconsin Administrative Code.
- Sick leave credits or compensatory time off credits cannot be donated
- Donor may donate not more than 24 hours of leave in any calendar year, prorated for part-time and leave must be donated on an hour-per-hour basis
- Donor must have completed the first six months of an original probationary period in a permanent position or six months in a project position.
- Donor must have been a state employee for at least one year and remain a state employee.
- Can donate leave between members of different bargaining and employing units.
- Can donate leave across state agency lines upon approval of both agencies.
- Leave credits that are not used by the recipient are returned to the donor.
Classified Catastrophic Leave Donors should complete the authorization form approved by the Office of State Employment Relations.UPG #9.08.
Eligible Unclassified Recipients must satisfy the following conditions:
- Be on an approved unpaid leave of absence due to your own catastrophic illness or medical condition or that of an immediate family member.
- Provide sufficient written proof to the Chancellor or designee that a catastrophic illness or medical condition exists.
- Have exhausted all paid leave available, including sick leave.
- Not be receiving benefits from another state-sponsored income replacement program, including Income Continuation Insurance (ICI).
Unclassified Donation Requirements
- Unclassified leave can only be donated to unclassified employees - cannot donate to classified employees
- Leave may be donated as frequently as the donor desires but it must be donated in full-day increments only
- Donated leave will not be transferred to recipient's account until needed. Unused donated leave will be returned to the donor's account.
- Donated leave may be used to meet the Income Continuation Insurance waiting period.
This document was last revised on July 21, 2010