Personal Leave Policy

Eligible employees may request a personal leave of absence for up to three months for compelling and/or urgent personal circumstances that do not qualify under the Family and Medical Leave Act or other leaves covered under Brandeis policies.

Such leaves may or may not be granted based on the needs of the university and department. Personal leaves are granted only when the employee intends to return to the university following the leave.


In order to be eligible for personal leave under this policy, an employee must have been employed in a benefits eligible position for at least 12 continuous months before the leave commences.


Procedure for Requesting Personal Leaves

A request for personal leave shall be made in writing to the immediate supervisor and the department head of the employee and to the Office of Human Resources at least 30 days prior to the leave or, under emergency circumstances, no later than two weeks prior to the beginning of the leave. The length of the leave and reason must be stated in the request. The length of an approved personal leave will depend on the facts and circumstances presented by the employee and the university as well as upon the needs of the department.

Response to Employees Request for Personal Leave

The Office of Human Resources will provide notice either orally or in writing responding to the employee’s request for personal leave within five business days (absent extenuating circumstances) after receiving the employee’s written request.

Use of Vacation, Personal and Sick Time During a Personal Leave

Employees must use all their vacation and personal time prior to the start of an unpaid personal leave. Sick time benefits may not be used during a personal leave of absence.

Status of Benefits During a Personal Leave

Employees may continue their medical and/or dental coverage during a personal leave provided they pay the full premium (both employee and the university portion). Employees must make arrangements directly with the benefits staff in the Office of Human Resources to continue the premium payments.

Group Basic Life Insurance and Long-Term Disability

Insurance will continue at no cost to the employee during an approved personal leave. Supplemental life insurance can be maintained if the employee directly makes arrangements with the benefits staff in the Office of Human Resources to continue the premium payments.

Retirement Plan

In accordance with IRS regulations, retirement plan contributions may not be continued during an unpaid leave.

Vacation, Personal and Sick Leave

Vacation, personal and sick leave will not accrue during an unpaid personal leave.

Flexible Reimbursement Accounts

Deductions for employees who participate in either the university’s dependent care or health care reimbursement accounts will stop immediately upon the beginning of the unpaid portion of the leave. An employee may continue to submit claims for covered expenditures during the leave and continues to be responsible for expending the account in accordance with plan provisions or risk losing an unused balance.

Tuition Reimbursement Benefits

Tuition reimbursement benefits may not be used or paid while on leave. However, upon return to a benefits-eligible position, eligibility is reinstated immediately. Eligible employees must be actively employed by the university while taking an approved course at the time of reimbursement.

Employee Status After Personal Leave

  • At the conclusion of an approved personal leave, the employee will be reinstated to his/her same job or a job with equivalent status, pay, benefits and other employment terms.
  • Failure to return from a leave of absence on the anticipated date of return will constitute a resignation.
  • Employees must contact their supervisor at least two weeks prior to the end of the leave to indicate plans to return to work or to resign from the university. Failure to do so will be treated as a voluntary resignation of employment.
  • It is the supervisor’s responsibility to ensure that the Office of Human Resources is notified when the employee returns to work.