Alison has just learned that she is pregnant with her first child. She's excited about starting a family, but knows she needs to continue working after the baby is born. She doesn't know what's available to her and what she needs to do. Now what?
Pregnancy is covered under the family and medical leave, so Alison is eligible for 12 weeks of leave and entitled to return to her job. (See questions 4 and 26.) She should contact OHR to get information about family and medical leave and her insurance coverage.
- 4. How do I know if I am eligible for family and medical leave?
- 26. Can I return to my job when my leave ends?
At the point when Alison is ready to share the news in her department, she should notify her supervisor (using the Request for Leave form) indicating that she needs time off for childbirth and to care for her new baby. She will receive information from OHR regarding medical certification and designation of FMLA and OFLA. (See questions 21 to 25.)
- 21. How do I request family and medical leave?
- 25. Is the information included in my medical certification confidential?
Over the time of her pregnancy, Alison should plan how she might like to use her family and medical leave. She may chose to take her 12 full weeks of parental leave consecutively or, with her supervisor’s approval, she can return to work part-time or work intermittently after the birth of her baby. (See question 16.) She may need to stop working before the delivery date, and therefore, may be eligible for more than 12 weeks of leave since OFLA leave is more generous. If she has a husband or partner who also works for OSU, both may be eligible for family and medical leave and they can coordinate time off accordingly. (See question 12 & 14)
- 12. If my spouse also works at OSU, can we both take 12 weeks to care for a new child?
- 14. What are some examples of time off that qualify under OFLA, but not FMLA?
- 16. Can I take intermittent or reduced hour leave to care for a new child?
Alison may use accrued sick and vacation leave during her time off. If Alison is a classified employee and, if she wants to use leave without pay, Alison must first exhaust her sick and vacation balances. She can request in writing that up to 40 hours of vacation leave be retained for use after her leave ends. If she is a faculty member, exhausting paid leave is not a requirement. (See question 17). If she holds a tenure track position, she may want to contact the Vice Provost of Academic Affairs to explore the university policy which delays the tenure clock for pregnancy and child birth.
If Alison is an unclassified employee, she may request an unearned sick leave advance (if eligible) for her period of disability (birth and post partum healing), but not for her parental leave to bond with her child.
After the birth, she should contact the Benefits Section in OHR to enroll her newborn in insurance coverage.