University Policy: 05-035 Paid Parental Leave for Faculty
Policy Category: Human Resources
Responsible Office: Office of Human Resources
Responsible Executive: Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
Download the Policy: (PDF)
Effective Date: 09/01/2017
1. Policy Statement

1.1. Oregon State University (“university”) will provide eligible faculty members with paid parental leave upon the birth or adoption of a child to care for and bond with their newborn or newly-adopted child.  The first year implementation is effective September 1, 2017 and will provide sixty (60) hours of paid parental leave to eligible faculty members.  

2. Reason for Policy

2.1. The university is committed to being a great place to work, learn, and flourish; and to creating and sustaining healthy environments that enable community members to live productive, balanced, and engaged lives.

2.2. In an effort to support this commitment, the university will provide faculty with paid parental leave to contribute to recruitment and retention efforts, reduce stress, increase morale, and assist employees with work-life integration.

2.3. This policy enhances the existing benefit of paid and unpaid leave programs: accrued sick leave; advance of unused sick leave; vacation leave; and leave provided by the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) and the Oregon Family Leave Act (“OFLA”).

3. Scope & Audience

3.1. This university policy applies to all university faculty members with an appointment of 0.50 FTE or greater and meeting other requirements.

4. Definitions

4.1. Eligible employee: An unclassified academic or professional faculty member who:

4.1.1.Has an appointment of 0.50 FTE or greater;

4.1.2. Has been employed for at least 180 days; and,

4.1.3. Has gained a child through birth or adoption.

5. Responsibilities & Procedures

5.1. General Guidelines for Paid Parental Leave

5.1.1. The university will provide eligible employees with paid parental leave upon the birth or the adoption of a child.

5.1.2. Paid parental leave is to provide a birth mother, biological father, spouse, domestic partner, or adoptive parent with paid time off to care for and bond with a newborn or newly adopted child.

5.1.3. Paid parental leave is paid at 100% of the employee’s regular rate of pay.

5.1.4. Paid parental leave is not available for the adoption of a spouse’s or domestic partner’s children.

5.1.5. Parental leave provides a paid leave benefit that may be combined with other leave programs (e.g., sick leave, vacation) to maximize the length of paid leave available for use during FMLA or OFLA, in the event of a birth or the adoption of a child.

5.1.6. Departments should be flexible in managing parental leave requests, so as to permit eligible employees to effectively manage career and family responsibilities.

5.1.7. Workload issues should be proactively managed so that excessive demands are not placed on the remaining faculty and staff.

5.2. Amount of Paid Parental Leave

5.2.1. Eligible employees at 1.0 FTE will receive sixty (60) hours of paid parental leave.

5.2.2. Eligible employees at 0.50 FTE but less than 1.0 FTE will receive the number of hours of paid parental leave that is proportional to their appointment percentage. 

5.2.3. Eligible employees on an academic year appointment will receive a pro-rated amount of paid parental leave for any portion of the sixty (60) hours (1.0 FTE) that occurs in the academic year.

5.2.4. Employees who attain eligibility (180 days of service) while on leave for the purpose of a birth or the adoption of a child will be eligible for a pro-rated portion of paid parental leave. 

5.2.5. If both parents are employed by the university and are eligible employees as defined in Sec. 4.1, both are entitled to paid parental leave and may take the leave concurrently or at separate times. 

5.2.6. One parental leave benefit is available per employee per birth or adoption event.  The number of children involved does not increase the length of paid parental leave granted for that event.

5.3. Use of Leave

5.3.1. Paid parental leave must be used within the eighteen (18) weeks immediately following the birth or adoption.  Eligible employees may take FMLA leave before the actual placement or adoption of a child if an absence from work is required for the placement for adoption or foster care. For example, the employee may be required to attend counseling sessions, appear in court, consult with his or her attorney or the doctor(s) representing the birth parent, submit to a physical examination, or travel to another country to complete an adoption.

5.3.2. Paid parental leave may be used either on a continuous or intermittent basis.

5.3.3. Any unused paid parental leave balance remaining after eighteen (18) weeks following the birth or adoption will be forfeited.

5.3.4. Paid parental leave may be used in cases of stillbirth.  A maximum of sixty (60) hours of paid parental leave may be used and the leave will run concurrent with any available OFLA bereavement leave.  Additional time may be used from available sick leave balances.  The university may request medical documentation to support the use of paid parental leave for this purpose.

5.4. Coordination with Other Paid/Unpaid Leaves

5.4.1. Parental leave runs concurrently with available leave under FMLA and OFLA.  If the amount of available leave under FMLA and/or OFLA is less than the amount of paid parental leave to be taken, paid parental leave will still be granted as specified in this policy.  

5.4.2. Disability benefits.  Paid parental leave is not required to be exhausted prior to the use of short-term disability.  The employee may choose to supplement their short-term disability benefit by using paid parental leave to make up to 100% of their salary.

5.5. Tenure Clock Extensions

5.5.1. Tenure track faculty may request a one-year extension of their tenure clock as outlined in the Faculty Handbook.

5.6. Failure to Return to Work

5.6.1. The employee must reimburse the university the paid parental leave benefit paid under this policy if the employee:

a. Fails to return to work after the expiration of this leave and/or any other authorized leave period (e.g., FMLA, OFLA, extended leave of absence); or,

b. Returns, but fails to remain actively at work for at least thirty (30) calendar days.

5.6.2. The university will not require reimbursement if the failure to return to work is due to the continuation, recurrence, or onset of a serious health condition of the employee or child that would otherwise qualify the employee to receive leave under FMLA and/or OFLA, or other circumstance beyond the employee’s control.

6. Forms & Tools 

6.1. Family & Medical Leave:

6.2. Request Leave in EmpCenter:

6.3. EmpCenter Protected Leave Guide:

7. Frequently Asked Questions

7.1. None.

8. Related Information

8.1. Leave Administration Manual:

8.2. Family & Medical Leave:

8.3. Faculty Handbook, section on promotion and tenure guidelines:

8.4. Advance of Unused Sick Leave:

9. History

9.1. Last review date:  December 2017.

9.2. Next scheduled review date:  January 2019.

10. Website

10.1. University Policy 05-035, Paid Parental Leave for Faculty:

11. Contacts

Office of Human Resources