New July 1, 2021

UC is committed to supporting faculty and staff who need time off to care for a family member or to bond with a new child. Family and Medical Leave (FML) provides job protection when employees need time off for a number of reasons, consistent with federal and state law. The Pay for Family Care and Bonding (PFCB) program, effective July 1, 2021, gives employees the option to replace some of the income they would otherwise lose during their approved leave.

Employees who qualify for PFCB can receive 70% of their eligible earnings for up to eight workweeks per calendar year. To qualify, the FML leave must be taken in a block of one workweek or more, for any of the following purposes:

  • Care for a family member with a serious health condition
  • Bonding with a new child
  • Military Caregiver Leave
  • Qualifying Exigency Leave 

Family and Medical Leave (FML) is job-protected leave provided by the University for specified family and medical reasons consistent with the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), and California’s Pregnancy Disability Leave Law (PDLL). PFCB is not an option if you’re taking FML for your own serious health condition or your pregnancy disability. 

Eligibility

Who's eligible: Non-represented employees on an approved block FML leave for one workweek or more for one of the qualifying reasons above. The same is true for represented employees in bargaining units that are participating in the program. (Most units are participating. Please refer to your unit’s collective bargaining agreement.)

Who pays: UC

Please note: To be eligible for PFCB, you must first be eligible for a qualifying Family and Medical Leave under FMLA and/or CFRA. This requires that you have been employed by UC for at least a total of 12 months and that you have actually worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months immediately before the start of the leave.

To learn more about eligibility for Family and Medical Leave, see:

How the program works

While FML may generally be taken as a block leave, intermittently, or by working a reduced schedule, PFCB is only an option if you take FML in a block of at least one workweek.

You may opt to use other forms of paid leave (such as sick leave, vacation or PTO) before or after using PFCB, but not at the same time. If you elect to use PFCB, you must continue to use PFCB until your qualifying FML block leave ends or you exhaust your full 8 workweeks of PFCB for the calendar year.

To illustrate how this works, here’s an example of a few options if you are a staff member with just over 12 weeks of accrued sick leave, and you have been approved for 12 weeks of FML to care for a family member with a serious health condition:

  • Option 1: Use sick leave for your entire 12-week leave (full pay). You’ll receive your full income during your leave, but you’ll have very little sick leave remaining when you return to work.
  • Option 2: Use sick leave for 8 weeks (full pay) and PFCB for the remaining 4 weeks (70% of eligible earnings). Your income will be reduced somewhat, but you’ll still have more than 4 weeks of sick leave remaining when you return to work.
  • Option 3: Use PFCB for 8 weeks (70% of eligible earnings) and sick leave for 4 weeks (full pay). This option leads to the largest reduction in your income, but you’ll still have more than 8 weeks of sick leave remaining when you return to work.

Note: If your FML ends before you have used the full 8 workweeks of PFCB for the calendar year, you may use the remainder if you have another qualifying FML block leave later in the calendar year.

Because there are so many factors to consider in planning your Family and Medical Leave, it can get complicated. Explore UC’s resources to understand how leave and pay provisions work together, but it’s also important to talk to the individual or office coordinating your leave as soon as possible.