E29.0 Staff Leave of Absence

Applies to all regular staff employees.


The university provides an opportunity for leaves of absence for valid reasons. The department and the Director of Human Resources (or designated Human Resources representative) review each request on its own merits. Decisions including the status of compensation, benefits, and length of service credit during the leave are based on the employee's length of employment, overall employment record, and the reason for and the duration of the leave.

Guidelines for Leaves of Absences

PERSONAL: Leaves of absence granted for personal reasons not covered by RIT's Family Leave Policy represent time off without pay. Leaves up to four months may be granted with continuation of benefits. A leave of absence of more than four months may be granted; however, for leaves beyond four months, benefits are not continued. With the approval of the department head, the position may be held open for up to six months. A supervisor may grant up to four weeks leave without pay without consulting the Department of Human Resources; however, notice of the leave must be processed using a Employee Action Form in order to stop pay.

PROFESSIONAL: The purpose of leave for professional development is to encourage and assist an individual to become a more valuable member of the university staff by engaging in some form of advanced study, writing, research, or other creative activity.

A leave of absence for purposes of professional development may be granted for up to 2 years, but is reviewed by the supervisor for continuance on a quarterly basis. The leave is without pay, but benefits may be continued. The department holds the position for the employee.

The employee is expected to return to the university for a period of one year following the leave. If this obligation is not met, the employee must repay the university for the cost of benefits provided during the leave period.



  • Submits a written request to the immediate supervisor outlining the reason for the leave request, its proposed dates, and duration


  • Approves/disapproves the request.

  • Submits the request through the appropriate college/division approval process to the Director of Human Resources or designated HR representative.

Director of 
Human Resources or 

  • Reviews the leave request.

  • Authorizes the leave or consults further with the supervisor.

  • Notifies the supervisor regarding disposition of the request.

  • Where appropriate, makes arrangements with Payroll Department to continue health insurance on direct-pay basis.

Responsible Party:  Department of Human Resources

Effective Date:
Personnel Policy 2.09 Issued July 1, 1984

Policy History:
Last revised July 1, 1993
Edited for department title change September 2008 
Edited October 2010
Edited August 2017 to edit length of leave to match length of semesters