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What to do if you're

Taking a leave of absence

Life happens — both good and bad — and sometimes that means you may need to take a leave of absence from your UC job. Regardless of the reason for your leave, here are the steps you should take to ensure UC knows your intent and that you continue to be covered by any benefits for which you are eligible.


Talk to your department head, manager or supervisor and your Payroll or Benefits Office about taking a leave of absence

Your department head, manager or supervisor can help you determine the types of leaves you qualify for and help you fill out appropriate forms. It's best to do this as soon as your need for a leave arises, so your department can plan for your absence. Try to be as specific as possible about the length of time and reasons for the leave of absence. Your Payroll or Benefits Office can advise you about options you have for paid leave.

If you're a faculty member, see the section of the Academic Personnel Manual on faculty leaves.


Determine which type of leave fits your circumstances

UC offers of the following leaves, so review the information if you are unsure what type to take:

*See Applying for Disability for more information


Make decisions about which benefits you'll continue during your leave

Make sure you understand how going on leave affects your UC-sponsored health and welfare benefits, as well as your service credit in the UC Retirement Plan. For many benefits, including medical and dental, you have the option to continue them for up to two years, so long as you pay the full premium (both your and UC's portions).

To review the benefits you're enrolled in, sign in to your UCPath account. 

If you have an outstanding 403(b) Plan loan, you'll need to suspend or set up monthly payments during your leave, or repay the loan in full. Contact Fidelity Retirement Services for more information.


Stay in touch

Be sure to keep your address and other contact information up to date while you’re on leave. You can update your information via your personal account on UCPath. You can also stay informed about the latest news from the university by visiting UCnet.


When you return, contact your local benefits office

They can inform you about what you need to do to get back to work. Within 31 days of your return to work, you'll need to restart benefits you chose not to continue during your leave. If your unpaid leave was less than 120 days, you may re-enroll yourself (and your eligible family members) in the same plans, with the same coverage levels as before. After an unpaid leave of 120 days or more, you may enroll in any UC-sponsored plans for which you're eligible.


If your UCRP service credit was suspended

If you are not getting paid while on leave, you usually don't earn UCRP service credit. You may be able to purchase service credit for your leave period. Generally the sooner you do this, the less it will cost you.


If you do not return to work at UC

Check with your local benefits office for information about continuing your group insurance plans.

If you decide to retire from UC, contact the Retirement Administration Service Center.