Additional Leaves of Absence under the Family Leave Acts (State & Federal)

The State Family Leave Act permits employees to take leaves of absence without pay in connection with the birth or adoption of a child or the serious illness of a child, spouse, parent or parent of a spouse for up to 12 weeks in a 24 month period. Such leave may be taken on a reduced or intermittent schedule with the approval of the departmental supervisor. To qualify, the employee must be employed through a covered employer, for at least 12 months or more, and must have worked not less than 1,000 hours excluding overtime during the last 12 month period.

The employee's health insurance would continue during this time period. An employee would only be responsible for the payment of any premium contribution required of a plan. Under the Family Leave Act an employee's (classified employee only) seniority will continue to accrue for layoff purposes during the employee's leave.

The Federal Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) became effective on August 5, 1993. The FMLA does not supersede any provisions of the State Family Leave that provides greater rights than those provided under the FMLA. Moreover, rights under the FMLA are not diminished by State Law. If leave qualifies for both FMLA Leave and State Family Leave, the leave used counts against the employee's entitlement under both laws.

Under the FMLA an employee may take a leave of absence for birth or placement of a child for adoption or foster care. In such cases the leave must conclude within one year of the birth or placement. Leave may also be taken to care for a child, spouse or parent with a serious health condition or the employee's own serious illness. The employee is entitled to take a leave for up to 12 weeks in a one year period. This leave may be taken at a reduced or intermittent schedule with the approval of the departmental supervisor. The employee's health insurance would also continue during this time period. An employee would only be responsible for the payment of any premium contributions required of a plan. On State Family Leave and FMLA, leave time does not accrue while in non pay status.

To qualify for FMLA, an employee must have worked for a covered employer for 12 months and at least 1250 hours during the 12 month period proceeding the leave.

Application for both State Family Leave and Federal Family Leave and Medical Leave must be in writing to your supervisor with a copy to the Office of Human Resources. It is recommended before applying that you contact the Office of Human Resources for more details regarding these Acts.

1. Health Benefits
Employees participating in the State Health Benefits Program are entitled to continued health coverage under both Acts, while on family leave. This includes health care, prescription drug, dental and vision care benefits. Please note that an employee with a required payroll deduction for health related coverage is responsible for making payment to The University.

2. Pension
Service and salary credit for pension purposes are earned in the state retirement systems while in pay status only. For periods where leave is taken on an intermittent or reduced schedule basis, an employee may be able to obtain pension credit depending upon the compensation received during the coverage periods involved. Members under the Alternate Benefit Program must receive at least 50% percent of their base salary to make contributions to their account.

Members of the Public Employees Retirement System, Teachers Pension Annuity Fund and Police and Firemen's Pension System may purchase service credit for a maximum of three months for a family leave and two years for personal illness. The Alternate Benefit Program does not have such a provision.

3. Life Insurance
The employee's group life insurance coverage will continue up for a maximum of 93 days while on an official family leave for all purposes except personal illness. In this case contributions are required from members covered by contributory life insurance in order to continue their contributory life insurance.

Additional resources:

Specific Notice for New Jersey Family Leave (NJ FLA) and Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Payment and timesheet reporting during leaves of absence

NJ Family Leave Insurance (FLI) - Cash benefits to care for your family member