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Parental Care Leave

Latest Revision: Jan 24, 2017

This leave is applicable to all full-time Officers of Administration, benefits-eligible part-time Officers of Administration and Non-Union Support Staff. An unpaid parental care leave of up to six months is available to full-time Officers of Administration who have been employed by the University for three months or longer. Employees eligible for parental care leave include biological parents, parents of a legally adopted child or foster child, and others in parental care relationships. Employees may use this benefit once within a 12-month rolling year.

In cases where both parents work in the same department at Columbia University, any leave beyond the FMLA period will require approval by the departmental administrator to schedule the time appropriately. An employee who intends to request a parental leave must give written notice to their department as far in advance as possible and must indicate an anticipated return to work date.

If eligible for benefits under FMLA, this parental leave will run concurrently. Employees who decide that they will not be returning to active employment must notify their department in writing at least four weeks prior to the scheduled return date. Notice of continuation of healthcare rights for coverage will be sent to employees who decide not to return.

As with other unpaid leaves, an employee is not entitled to holiday pay or to the accrual of vacation or sick day benefits while on an unpaid parental leave. Health and other insurance benefits coverage may continue during the unpaid leave by the employee directly paying premiums by contacting HR Benefits. Upon return to active status, an employee who has been on a parental leave is to be reinstated in the same position or a comparable position.

For those eligible for payment under a pregnancy-related disability, the parental leave begins after the medical disability period ends.

maternity leave