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State Employees:

  • Utah's family and medical leave regulations for state employees mostly follow the federal FMLA rules.
  • The Utah laws allow up to 12 weeks of leave each calendar year for:
    • The birth, adoption, or placement of a child.
    • A serious health condition of the employee.
    • The care of the employee's spouse, dependent child, or parent with a serious medical condition.
  • Leave taken for purposes of childbirth, adoption, or placement for adoption, or foster care shall not be taken in small pieces unless the employee and employer agree on that arrangement.
  • In certain circumstances, Utah FMLA may be extended for up to 12 months without pay, or as long-term disability leave.
  • Employees also have a variety of leave options for family and medical leave including accrued sick and annual leave, converted sick leave, and compensatory time.
  • These other kinds of leave will be described completely below.

Leave Without Pay

  • A Utah state employee may take an approved leave without pay of no longer than 12 months.
  • To be eligible for the continuous leave without pay, the employee must apply in writing to the managing agency for approval.
  • Medical leave may be approved if a health practitioner certifies that the employee is temporarily disabled.
  • Leave without pay for non-disability reasons may be allowed only if there is an expectation that the employee will return to work.
  • If an employee receives no compensation for a complete pay period, then that employee is responsible for paying state-provided benefit premiums, unless they are otherwise covered by federal FMLA.
  • If an employee returns to work on or before the leave without pay expires, then that employee will be placed in a position with comparable pay and seniority to their previous position.
  • The only exception to the above would be if the employee is unable to perform the same or comparable duties without special accommodation.
  • An employee returning to work on or before the expiration of leave without pay shall also receive previously accrued annual and sick leave.

Long-Term Disability Leave

  • Utah's Department of Human Resource Management's family and medical leave rules allow state employees who have completed at least two full pay periods of work to use accumulated sick leave for:
    • Preventative health and dental care.
    • Maternity, paternity, and adoption care
    • Absence from duty due to illness, injury or temporary disability of an employee, spouse, or dependent living in the employee's home
  • If requested sick leave is to cover an absence of more than four successive work days, acceptable evidence such as medical certification must be provided.
  • If there is reason to believe that an employee is abusing sick leave, a supervisor may require an employee to produce a medical certification of illness regardless of the length of sick leave.
  • Employees may also use converted sick leave.
  • Converted sick leave is excess sick leave converted to any other kind of leave.
  • Employees who have 144 or more hours of accrued sick leave on the first pay period of the year may convert unused sick leave hours in excess of 64 to converted sick leave.
  • Converted sick leave may be used for another purpose including:
    • Annual leave.
    • Family leave.
    • Medical leave.

Compensatory Time

  • Compensatory time, earned at the rate of one hour for every one hour of overtime work, may be used for family or medical leave.
  • Leave paid from an employee's accrued compensatory time account may not be counted against the employee's 12-week FMLA leave entitlement.

Funeral Leave

  • Employees may receive up to 24 hours of leave to attend a funeral of an immediate family member.
  • An immediate family member is defined as:
    • Spouses.
    • Children.
    • Parents and also includes.
    • Some step- and grand-relatives as well as relatives-in-law.
  • Funeral leave may not be charged against accrued sick leave or annual leave

Fitness-for-Duty Evaluations

  • Medical evaluations to determine fitness-for-duty may be required for the following reasons:
    • Return to work from illness or injury.
    • When management determines there is a direct threat to health or safety of the employee or others.
    • In conjunction with corrective action, performance or conduct issues, or discipline.
    • When a fitness-for-duty evaluation is a bona fide occupational qualification for selection, retention, or promotion.

Temporary Transitional Assignment

  • Temporary transitional assignments may follow a return to work from injury or illness.
  • Temporary transitional assignments may be a temporarily required while an employee is being evaluated to see if reasonable accommodation is appropriate.

Organ Donor Leave

  • State employees are entitled to up to seven days of paid leave for being a bone marrow donor.
  • State employees may have up to 30 days of paid leave for being an organ donor.
  • The leave periods for these purposes include both donation and recovery.
FMLA in Utah

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