Sick Time (30.022)

Introduction 

The intent of sick time is to serve as protection against loss of income due to illness or non-work-related injury.

This Policy is organized as follows:

  • Accrual for Non-Exempt employees
    • Full-time non-exempt staff
    • Part-time non-exempt staff, working 12 months per year
    • Part-time non-exempt staff, working less than 12 months per year
    • Non-exempt staff year to year carryover
  • Accruals for Exempt Employees
    • Full-time exempt staff
    • Part-time exempt employees, working 12 months per year
    • Part-time exempt employees work less than 12 months per year
    • Exempt staff year to year carryover
Policy Statement 

The University recognizes that employees may need time off work due to bona-fide illness or non-work related injury. The University grants paid sick time to employees to protect an employee’s income in these situations.  Employees working 12 months per year and at least 50% Full Time Equivalent (FTE) are eligible for sick time accruals.  Those working less than 12 months per year must be scheduled to work at least 975 hours per year to be eligible for sick time accruals. Temporary and seasonal employees are not eligible for paid sick time.

Accruals for Non-Exempt Employees
Sick time for non-exempt employees accrues in hours at the end of each biweekly pay period.

  • Full-time non-exempt staff.  Non-exempt staff working full time (37.5 hours per week, 12 months per year) accrue the equivalent of 90 hours (12 days) of sick time per year. The accrual rate is calculated at 3.462 hours per biweekly pay period.  Non-exempt staff working 40 hours per week accrue 3.693 hours per biweekly pay period.
  • Part-time non-exempt staff, working 12 months per year.  Part-time non-exempt staff working 12 months per year and at least 50% FTE receive prorated accruals equal to 3.462 hours per biweekly pay period multiplied by the FTE percentage.  For example, an employee who works 6 hours per day, five days per week, i.e. 80% FTE, will have a sick time accrual of  3.462 x .80,  or 2.7696 hours per biweekly pay period.  This calculates to 72 hours annually.
  • Part-time non-exempt staff, working less than 12 months per year. Part-time non-exempt staff working less than 12 months per year do not receive sick time accruals during periods in which the employee does not work.  For example, a 37.5 hour/week employee who works 10 months per year will receive 90 x  (10/12) = 75 sick time hours per year or 3.409 hours for each of the 22 biweekly pay periods worked and receive no accruals during 4 bi-weekly pay periods in which no work was performed.  Departments are required to manually adjust accruals to zero during off periods for employees who work less than 12 months per year.
  • Non-exempt staff year to year carryover.  Sick time accruals carry over from year to year (based on a calendar year). Non-exempt full-time staff carry over a maximum of 450 hours (60 days) of sick time per year.   If an employee has reached the maximum carryover amount, the employee will still continue to accrue sick time for the remainder of the calendar year.  The combined maximum sick time balance (carryover and current-year accruals) is 540 hours (72 days). At the end of the calendar year, any accrued sick time in excess of the maximum 450 hours will be forfeited.   

Maximum sick time carryover for part-time staff working 12 months per year is: 450 hours x FTE.  Maximum sick time carryover for staff working less than 12 month per year is: (# months worked/12) x 450.

  • Non-exempt year to year carryover.  Sick time for exempt employees accrues in days at the end of each monthly pay period.

Accruals for Exempt Employees
Sick time for exempt staff accrues in days at the end of each monthly pay period.

  • Full-time exempt staff.   Exempt staff working full time (37.5 weekly scheduled hours, 12 months per year) accrue 12 days of sick time per year. The accrual rate is 1 day per monthly pay period.
  • Part-time exempt employees, working 12 months per year..  Part-time exempt employees working 12 months per year and at least 50% FTE accrue the equivalent of 12 sick days per calendar year. The accrual rate is 1 day per pay monthly period. The value (equivalent hours) of a sick day for a part-time exempt employees is calculated based on the staff member’s scheduled weekly hours in Workday divided by 5.  Workday considers this a “standard workday” for that employee.  For example, if an exempt employee’s weekly scheduled hours equals 30, when 30 is divided by 5 the hours the equivalent (or standard workday) for the accrued sick day is 6 hours. This employee accrues twelve 6-hour sick days in a twelve-month period.
  • Part-time exempt employees work less than 12 months per year.  Part-time exempt staff working less than 12 months per year do not receive sick time accruals during periods in which the employee does not work.  For example, an exempt staff member with 37.5 weekly scheduled hours, who works 10 months per year will receive 1 sick day during the 10 working months, but receive no accruals during the 2 monthly pay periods in which no work was performed.  Departments are required to manually adjust accruals to zero during off periods for employees who work less than 12 months per year.
  • Exempt staff year to year carryover.  Sick time accruals carry over from year to year (based on a calendar year). Full-time exempt staff may accrue up to a maximum of 60 days of carryover sick time.  If an exempt employee reaches the maximum carryover amount, he or she will still continue to accrue sick time for the remainder of the calendar year.  The combined maximum sick time balance (carryover and current-year accruals) is 72 days.  At the end of the calendar year any accrued sick time in excess of the maximum 60 days is forfeited.  For employees who work less than 12 months per year, the carryover amount is prorated based on the number of month worked.

Usage and Reporting of Sick Time by Non-Exempt Employees
Non-exempt employees report sick time taken into Workday in hours based upon the number of hours expected to be worked that day (e.g. 7.5 hours per day for a full-time employee, 3.75 hours for a half day, etc). The minimum sick time that may be entered into Workday is .25 hours.  However, departments may elect to impose higher minimum increments based on business needs.

  • Summer Hours.  Sick time used during summer hours, when the employee is paid for 37.5 hours per week while working 35 hours, should be reported using 7.5 hours sick time for a full day and 3.75 hours for a half day.

Usage and Reporting of Sick Time by Exempt Employees
Staff working in exempt positions are required to work the number of hours per week necessary to perform the duties of the position.  The department may not reduce pay for an exempt employee in increments less than whole days if an employee is out of work in excess of the number of days of sick time accrued.  Therefore, when an exempt employee has exhausted accrued sick time off and is absent from work for one or more whole days, pay should be reduced for those full day absences. If the employee has a balance of sick time of one-half day (the minimum increment in which sick time may be recorded), that employee should not have his or her pay reduced for the day in which the one-half day balance is used.

For exempt employees who do not work a standard workweek, sick time off days will have to be converted into hours, but submitted and tracked in Workday as days.  This may require some record-keeping outside the Workday system.  The employee’s Supervisor or Absence Partner should be consulted for proper system usage and tracking.

Administrative Standards For both Non-Exempt and Exempt Employees
The following standards apply to sick time:

  • Sick time may be used by a new employee at the supervisor’s discretion during a probationary period.
  • Sick time must be earned before it is used; no borrowing is permitted.
  • When sick time is not available, the employee may use accrued vacation time with the permission of the supervisor.  Sick time may not be used when the employee is receiving pay through other paid time such as vacation.
  • No sick time accrues during a pay period in which the employee does not receive pay. This includes unpaid leaves of absence and pay periods in which the employee is not scheduled to work and is not receiving sick or vacation pay in lieu of regular pay.
  • Full time staff may use up to 12 sick days (90 hours) a year to care for a sick dependent or seriously ill parent.
  • Natural or adoptive fathers may use up to 12 accrued sick days (90 hours) a year at the date of birth or date of adoption of a child age 16 years or younger, by the employee. A year, in this case, is defined as the continuous 12 month period immediately prior to the date on which the employee wishes to use the sick time.
  • Part-time staff who work more than 50% FTE are eligible for a pro-rated amount of family sick time consistent with the sick time accrual section of this policy.
  • Employees must notify their supervisors in advance, or within the first 1/2 hour following their normal starting time, of the need to take sick time.
  • Supervisors may decide at their discretion if a doctor’s note is required, based on the number of days absent or previous sick time usage.
  • Staff are expected to schedule doctor's appointments in such a way as to minimize time away from work. When this is not possible, sick time may be taken.

Sick Time While On a Leave of Absence
Sick time accrued prior to the start of a medical leave of absence may be used during that leave and is to be used in a continuous manner from the first day of leave. Sick time may not be sporadically requested over the duration of the leave of absence.  Mothers or the primary caregiver in a same-sex domestic partnership, while on leave, may use any sick time accrued prior to the commencement of the leave.  If the Parental Leave Benefit applies, sick days may be used after the Parental Leave Benefit ends.

Employees may use sick time and file a claim for Rhode Island Temporary Disability Insurance concurrently, when applicable.

Employees on approved Family Medical Leave Act/Rhode Island Parental and Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA/RIPFML) and/or paid leave will accrue sick time while on a leave of absence, however, they will not be eligible to use those accrued days until after the return to work.

Treatment of Accrued Sick Time upon Transfer or Termination
Should an employee’s status change from non-exempt to exempt or vice versa, the department will need to convert the employee’s sick time balances into the respective hours or days.

Employees are not paid for accrued sick time upon termination.

Definitions 

Full-time equivalent (FTE): FTE is expressed as a percentage of what is considered a full time employee. For example, a full time employee is either 100% or 1.0, while a half-time employee is either 50% or .5, etc. 

Responsibilities 

Supervisors: Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that sick time is accrued and used in accordance with this policy.

Employees: Employees are responsible for reporting their sick time using Workday in accordance with this policy.

Absence Partners: Responsible for approving sick time in Workday. 

Policy Owner
Approved by 
Vice President for Human Resources
Contact(s) 

Jeff Jakulevicius
Benefits Compliance Analyst
University Human Resources
Brown Office Building 3rd Floor
Jeffrey_jakulevicius@brown.edu,
401-863-7594 

Revision Date:  Tue, 2014-05-20 16:00