The Texas A&M University System has established a sick leave pool to provide a source of additional paid sick leave for employees who have exhausted available sick, vacation, and compensatory time as a result of a catastrophic illness or injury. Sick leave pool benefits are made available through voluntary donations of sick leave hours from current and retiring employees.
Employees may qualify for pool hours if:
- the employee or family member has been under a licensed practitioner's care and the illness/injury has resulted in the employee's being absent from work for a minimum of 80 hours (hours missed do not need to be consecutive for pool purposes);
- eligible sick, vacation, and/or compensatory time has been exhausted; and
- all other applicable Texas A&M University procedures and regulations are followed, including System Regulations 31.06.01: Sick Leave Pool Administration and 31.03.02: Sick Leave.
The Sick Leave Pool and Pregnancy
The sick leave pool may be used for the condition of pregnancy and childbirth where a medical condition exists with the mother and/or child. Pool hours may be granted for prenatal visits, the medical recovery after birth, and postnatal visits related to the pregnancy.
Employees may donate to the pool during employment or at the time of separation. Donations made during employment must be in one-day increments; a separating or retiring employee may designate any number of unused accruals for donation to the pool.
A Texas A&M University employee may request the return of donated hours if s/he reemploys with the Texas A&M University component in a leave-accruing position and has exhausted all available sick leave, vacation leave, and compensatory time. Employees who have a break in service of less than 30 days must wait 30 days from their date of rehire and must exhaust all available sick leave, vacation leave, and compensatory time to have the donated hours returned to them.
Human Resources thanks those employees who choose to donate available sick leave hours to the pool. Such generosity enables other employees to receive this benefit where unfortunate circumstances have caused them to exhaust their available paid leave.
- Catastrophic Illness or Injury:
- A severe condition or combination of conditions affecting the mental or physical health of the employee or the employee's immediate family that requires the services of a licensed practitioner for a and forces the employee to miss at least 80 hours of scheduled work (see defined 80-hour waiting period below).
- Licensed Practitioner:
- A practitioner, as defined in the Texas Insurance Code, who is practicing within the scope of his or her license.
- 80-hour Waiting Period:
- A requirement stipulating that a full-time employee may not access the pool until s/he has missed 80 cumulative hours of work (50% effort employee = 80 cumulative hours of missed work, etc.) due to any one medical condition. The employee may use available paid leave throughout the 80-hour waiting period; missed hours do not need to be consecutive.
Sick Leave Pool Forms
- Sick Leave Pool Withdrawals
- The withdrawal form is used to request hours from the pool. Employees must request pool hours through his/her supervisor or HR Liaison. This form must be submitted to the pool administrator in a timely manner due to Texas A&M policies which prohibit retroactive pay. All areas of the form must be completed before the pool administrator may make a decision regarding the granting of requested hours.
- Sick Leave Pool Donations
- The donation form is used by employees to donate unused sick leave hours to the sick leave pool. All donations to the pool are voluntary; employees may choose to donate hours during his/her employment or may choose to donate at the time of termination or retirement. This form should be used as part of the exit process.
- Sick Leave Pool Returned Hours
- The returned hours form is used by departments to return unused hours to the sick leave pool. Department liaisons are responsible for returning unused hours to the University's pool administrator.
- Separate certification forms; please choose one of the following:
- Employee's Condition (for employee's own health condition)
- Family Member's Condition (for employee's family member's condition)
The Certification of Physician or Practitioner form is used to document medical information for purposes of the sick leave pool, Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) eligibility, and accountability for the use of applicable sick leave. The employee must return this form to his/her department in a timely manner in order to receive leave benefits.
- System Regulation 31.06.01: Sick Leave Pool Administration
- Sick Leave Pool Administration Manual
- Created for administrators and liaisons
- Contains information regarding:
- Pool use during pregnancy and childbirth
- Retroactive pay restrictions
- Use with the Family and Medical Leave Act
- Donating Sick Leave to Another Employee