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How to Take a Leave of Absence

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What to do prior to going on leave

Send an e-mail to at least one month prior to your leave start date to ensure that your leave will be properly recorded and entered in the payroll system. Otherwise, it may affect or delay your payroll or disability payments. If the leave is unforeseeable, notify your supervisor and the Leaves Office  as soon as possible about your need for leave.

Upon receipt of your request, your assigned Benefits Analyst will send you a leave packet containing the necessary forms for you to review and / or complete.

Supervisors:  If you receive a notification or any updates from a staff member regarding a leave of absence please be sure to notify the Leaves Office so that the leave can be properly administered.

What to do while you are still out on leave

Update your timecard appropriately to reflect your usage of vacation, sick, or leave without pay to avoid any discrepancies in your pay.

Supervisors:  You will need to continue to review, approve, and submit your employee’s timecard while they are on leave. If your staff member is unable to update their timecard, please coordinate with Benefits and Payroll to assure their timecard is updated accurately.

If you go off pay status, you will need to pay for the employee contribution of benefits and/or both employer/employee contributions for benefits depending on your leave eligibility.

  • Coordinate with your assigned Benefits Analyst to arrange to make your personal payments to continue your benefits (only if you are off pay status, i.e., not receiving a paycheck from UC Merced).
  • If enrolled in a Health Flexible Spending Account (FSA) and covered by FMLA – complete a UPAY 850 form to designate the status of your FSA Account during your leave
  • If your leave was due to Pregnancy Disability Leave or Parental Bonding, notify the Leaves Office within 7 days of the birth of your child.
    • Remember to enroll your new baby into medical, dental, and vision plans within 31 days from date of birth by completing a UPAY 850 form and send to
    • If you are enrolled in an HMO, your newborn must be assigned to a pediatrician in the mother’s medical group until the first day of the calendar month following birth. Please call your medical plan with any questions about the PCP assignment for your newborn.

If your leave is extended beyond the date originally identified by your health care provider, immediately notify your assigned Benefits Analyst and your supervisor.

What to do when you are ready to return to work

Have your doctor complete a Return to Work Certification indicating the date you can return to work and if you have any restrictions.

Contact your supervisor and to confirm your return to work date and provide a copy of your Return to Work Certification.

If you had de-enrolled in benefits, on your first day back to work, complete UPAY 850 form to re-enroll your benefits within 31 days from your Return to Work date.

Supervisors:  Check with the employee to ensure they have notified of their return to work.

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