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This page outlines the UNC System COVID-19 Work/Leave Provisions (Rev 06-23-2021) effective July 1, 2021, through the end of public health emergency or until revised or rescinded. Click here to see the work and leave provisions in place prior to July 1, 2021.


Vaccinations

Employee Vaccinations

Paid work time for permanent and temporary employees continue for vaccinations occurring within regular work hours and with supervisory permission through end of public health emergency (up to 8 hours in one day for each shot if more than one is required). This is paid work time and does not count against the COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL).

Vaccination Adverse Reaction

From Jan. 1, 2021, through the end of the public health emergency, COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL) may be used if an employee experiences a reaction to their vaccination, either on the day of the vaccination or the following day. Employees must use their accrued personal leave for reactions that are experienced beyond the day after vaccination. For continuing adverse reactions experienced beyond the day after vaccination, employees must use their own accrued personal leave.


COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL)

Up to 160 hours (prorated for part-time employees) of cumulative COVID-19 PAL is available to permanent employees from Mar. 16, 2020 through the end of public health emergency.

Employees may receive COVID-19 PAL under the following conditions:

  1. The employee is subject to a quarantine order or has been advised to self-quarantine by a health care provider or public health official due to COVID-19; and the department determines that the employee cannot telework; or
  2. The employee experiences a reaction to their COVID-19 vaccination that prevents them from returning to work, either on the day of the vaccination or on the following day. This leave may be applied retroactively to Jan. 1, 2021, for any employees who have received the COVID-19 vaccine and experienced a reaction. For continuing adverse reactions experienced beyond the day after vaccination, employees must use their own accrued personal leave.

Starting Jul. 1, 2021, absences due to isolation orders or non-quarantine possible exposures or symptoms are no longer eligible; employees must use personal leave.

How COVID-19 PAL Works

  • The 160 hours of COVID-19 PAL prorated for part-time employees.
  • Eligible employees may receive up to 80 hours before exhausting their own accrued leave.
  • Once the first 80 hours have been exhausted, the employee must use their accrued leave and paid time off for the absences.
  • After the employee has exhausted their accrued leave and paid time off, then the employee may receive an additional 80 hours of COVID-19 PAL for the absences.
  • Hours previously taken under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) or previous PAL provisions using the TIM pay codes below are subtracted from the employee’s 160 hours of COVID-19 PAL.
    • EPSL 1-3 – PD Leave”,
    • “AA – EPSL 1-3 Exhaust” or
    • “COVID-19 PAL.”
  • Example 1:
    Employee was unable to work from Nov. 2 – 13, 2020, because they were subject to a COVID-19 isolation order. Employee requested Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) under the FFCRA and was approved for 80 hours of “EPSL 1-3 – PD Leave.”

    • 80 hours are subtracted from the employee’s 160 hours of COVID-19 PAL. The employee has 80 hours of COVID-19 PAL remaining.

    Example 2:
    On Feb. 9, 2021, an employee is approved for paid work time to go get their COVID-19 vaccination. They leave work at 11 a.m. and plan to return by 1 p.m. The employee experiences an adverse reaction to the vaccine and is not able to return to work that day or the following day. The employee is approved for 12 hours of COVID-19 PAL to cover the time they missed from work on the day of and following the vaccine.

    • 12 hours are subtracted from the employee’s 160 hours of COVID-19 PAL. They have 148 hours of COVID-19 PAL remaining.
  • Unless you are approved to telework by your supervisor, COVID-19 PAL must be taken in full-day increments. If you have been approved by your supervisor to leave work early for a COVID-19 PAL qualifying reason, COVID-19 PAL hours may be used to cover any part of the workday you miss.

Employees who have symptoms of a communicable disease and are required to stay home, or who are ill with the communicable disease, must not to return to work until they are fully recovered in accordance with current CDC or NC Division of Public Health guidelines. If you are not feeling well, please follow the employee health guidelines on the University’s Environment, Health and Safety webpage.

Employee Instructions

If you need leave for one of the reasons above, please notify your supervisor and contact your departmental HR Representative for assistance. To request COVID-19 PAL, you, your supervisor, and TIM Administrator must complete the COVID-19 PAL Request Form. Please email the completed form to leave@unc.edu.

If you are requesting PAL for a reaction to the COVID-19 vaccination, please also submit a copy of your COVID-19 vaccination card with the PAL Request Form.

The Leave Administration Team in the Office of Human Resources will review your request form and communicate with you and your department regarding the status of your request for COVID-19 PAL. Should you have any questions about your request, you may call the Benefits & Leave Administration Support Center at (919) 962-3071 or email us at leave@unc.edu.

Time/Pay Entry

Employees will need to coordinate with their TIM Administrator for proper record keeping and reporting of these hours for payment. The TIM Administrator will enter this information on the employee’s timecard for this to roll into Payroll for proper payment.

TIM Administrators: For “how-to” questions, please email timsupport@unc.edu.


Other Leave Provisions for Permanent Employees  (Effective Jan. 1 – June 30, 2021)

  • Interchangeability of Leave: Through Dec. 31, 2021, employees may use accrued sick leave, vacation leave, and bonus leave interchangeably for COVID-19-related absences only (child/elder care, cannot telework, etc.); however, this paid leave cannot be used to cover hours during which an employee is on emergency temporary furlough. This provision also does not allow interchangeability of leave usage regarding the leave options provided in state policy for retirement, transfer, or separation.
  • Dual State Employee Household: If more than one person in the household is a state employee, then the employees are expected to work with their supervisors to determine how to allocate paid administrative leave to avoid inappropriate overlap of leave usage for child and elder care needs.
  • Other Absences: Employees who are on other pre-approved leave or who are unavailable for reasons other than provided above cannot use Paid Administrative Leave for the absence and must use their accrued personal leave and paid time off for hours not worked.
  • Part-time/Fluctuating Schedules: For part-time employees with fluctuating schedules, COVID-19 paid administrative leave may be applied as allowed above, but consideration should be given to the employee’s average hours per week over the course of a month. In no case shall paid administrative leave exceed forty hours per week.
  • Mandatory Employees: While management will give every possible consideration to individual personal circumstances, management has the discretion to deny or defer special leave provisions for mandatory employees whose presence is determined necessary to address urgent public health, public safety, or critical infrastructure needs. Special consideration should be given to COVID-19 Mandatory Employees who are determined to be high risk for contracting COVID-19 or who are providing care to someone at high risk. Managers should contact the Equal Opportunity and Compliance Office at eoc@unc.edu if a COVID-19 Mandatory Employee requests special consideration because of their own health condition and management believes they are not able to provide that consideration.
  • Remote Work and Flexible Work Arrangements: Institutional use of flexible work arrangements, including telework and alternate work schedules provided under the public health emergency provisions of the Communicable Disease Policy, ends June 30, 2021. Institutions may continue existing temporary arrangements while completing the implementation of their internal policies for ongoing remote work and other flexible work arrangements. Implementations should be completed within two months.
  • Other Provisions: For other provisions not addressed in this document, refer to the Communicable Disease Emergency Policy.

COVID-19 Shared Leave Bank

The COVID-19 Shared Leave Bank Program has been extended through Dec. 31, 2021. Leave-earning employees who are unable to report to work onsite or telework for covered COVID-19-related reasons may be eligible to receive COVID-19 Shared Leave. Employees must have exhausted all available paid leave prior to participating in the leave bank program. For program specifics, including eligibility criteria, how to apply for COVID-19 shared leave, how to donate shared leave to the bank, and links to the forms, please visit the COVID-19 Shared Leave web page on the OHR website.


Expanded Community Service Leave

COVID-19 Related Service Activity

Employees were granted up to 80 hours of Expanded Community Service Leave (CSL) for service with non-profit organizations on COVID-19-related volunteer activities, effective January 1, 2021. This expanded CSL ends on June 30, 2021, and any unused portion of the 80 hours is forfeited.

Tutoring and Mentoring

Flexibility for tutoring and mentoring Continues during the state of emergency and when a school mandates or offers virtual classes. Use of tutoring and mentoring options under CSL may occur in a formal standardized program or may include non-conventional tutoring/mentoring arrangements. For example, tutoring sessions may be carried out in a virtual and/or in-person environment, performed as part of a remote student cohort, or could include activities with an employee’s own child(ren). The tutoring and mentoring of “at-risk” students include those that, by virtue of their circumstances, are more likely than others to fail academically, particularly in a virtual academic environment, and who require temporary or ongoing support to succeed academically.

OSHR “reset” the balances for annual CSL allotments for all eligible employees. As of Jan. 1, 2021, employees have 24 hrs. of regular CSL – Option A or a 36-hour optional program for participation in literacy, tutoring, and mentoring programs available through the end of the calendar year.

The 24 hours (CSL – Option A) can be used for each year for regular volunteer activities and child involvement as outlined in the original Community Service Leave policy. Child involvement includes:

  • Meeting with a teacher or administrator concerning the employee’s child.
  • Attending any function sponsored by the school in which the employee’s child is participating (This provision shall only be used with non-athletic programs that are a part of, or supplement to, the school’s academic or artistic programs.)

The alternative 36 hours of CSL can be used for participation in literacy, tutoring, and mentoring programs, but provides more flexibility allowing employees to assist their children with virtual learning needs. Employees may choose to use either the 24-hour program or the 36-hour program and cannot use both.

In addition, OSHR has provided certain expansion of allowable activities through the remainder of the calendar year to provide more flexibility to employees in use of CSL.

  • If the employee is opting to use the 36-hour CSL, the hours per week used may vary week to week. Normally, this is assumed to be one hour per week throughout a school academic year, but greater flexibility has been provided so that hours can be used by the end of the year.
  • Tutoring and mentoring shall be in a formal standardized program or may include non-conventional tutoring/mentoring arrangements to include plans and activities in a virtual academic setting.
  • The tutoring session may be carried out virtually and/or in-person. This may include students as a part of a cohort or may include an employee’s own child(ren).
  • The definition is expanded for “at-risk” students who, by virtue of their circumstances, are more likely than others to fail academically, to include those who require temporary or ongoing support to succeed academically.
  • The definition of “school” is expanded to include an organization that is authorized to operate under the laws of the State of North Carolina (an elementary, middle or high school) to include recognition of the current virtual academic setting.

Paid Administrative Leave Provisions from Previous Months

COVID-19 Leave Information

This page outlines the UNC System COVID-19 Work/Leave Provisions – Rev 02-17-2021. The provisions below were effective Jan. 1, 2021 through June 30, 2021.

The revised guidance includes the following key items:

  • Both permanent and temporary employees can use paid time worked to receive both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine during work hours with supervisor approval. This is paid work time and does not count against the COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL).
  • COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL) may be used if an employee experiences a reaction to their vaccination, either on the day of the vaccination or the following day. This leave may be applied retroactively to Jan. 1, 2021. Employees must use their accrued personal leave for reactions that are experienced beyond the day after vaccination.
  • The tutoring session may be carried out virtually and/or in-person. This may include students as a part of a cohort or may include an employee’s own child(ren).
  • The provision allowing interchangeability of leave for COVID-related absences has been extended through June 30, 2021.

The coverage and terms of the COVID-19 work and leave provisions have continued to evolve since Mar. 2020. We encourage employees to check back for updates and to read the provided details carefully.

COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL)

The following provisions are effective Jan. 1 –– June 3, 2021.

Up to 160 hours (prorated for part-time employees) of cumulative COVID-19 PAL is available to permanent employees from Mar. 16, 2020, through June 30, 2021, for the following reasons:

  1. The employee is subject to a quarantine or isolation order, has been advised to self-quarantine by a health care provider or public health official due to COVID-19; or.
  2. The employee has had exposure to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and is awaiting a diagnosis (the employee may or may not be demonstrating symptoms).
  3. The employee experiences a reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine, either on the day of the vaccination or the following day. This leave may be applied retroactively to Jan. 1, 2021. Employees must use their accrued personal leave for reactions that are experienced beyond the day after vaccination.

How COVID-19 PAL Works

  1. The 160 hours of COVID-19 PAL are prorated for part-time employees.
  2. Eligible employees may receive up to 80 hours before exhausting their own accrued leave.
  3. Once the first 80 hours have been exhausted, the employee must use their accrued leave and paid time off for the absences.
  4. After the employee has exhausted their accrued leave and paid time off, then the employee may receive an additional 80 hours of COVID-19 PAL for the absences.

Note: If an employee used Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) in 2020 or previously took COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL) for any of the reasons below then those hours must be deducted from the employee’s COVID-19 PAL entitlement.

  1. Employee is subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
  2. Employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine related to COVID-19;
  3. Employee is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and is seeking a medical diagnosis.

Unless you are approved to telework by your supervisor, COVID-19 PAL must be taken in full-day increments. If you have been approved by your supervisor to leave work early for testing, COVID-19 PAL hours may be used to cover any part of the workday you miss. Employees who have symptoms of a communicable disease and are required to stay home, or who are ill with the communicable disease, must not to return to work until they are fully recovered in accordance with current CDC or NC Division of Public Health guidelines. If you are not feeling well, please follow the procedures on the Employee Health and Wellness during COVID-19 page.

Employee Instructions

If you need leave for one of the reasons above, please notify your supervisor and contact your departmental HR Representative for assistance. To request COVID-19 PAL, you, your supervisor, and TIM Administrator must complete the COVID-19 PAL Request Form. Please email the completed form to leave@unc.edu.

The Leave Administration Team in the Office of Human Resources will review your request form and communicate with you and your department regarding the status of your request for COVID-19 PAL. Should you have any questions about your request, you may call the Benefits & Leave Administration Support Center at (919) 962-3071 or email us at leave@unc.edu.

Time/Pay Entry

Employees will need to coordinate with their TIM Administrator for proper record keeping and reporting of these hours for payment. The TIM Administrator will enter this information on the employee’s timecard for this to roll into Payroll for proper payment.

TIM Administrators: For “how-to” questions, please email timsupport@unc.edu.

Other Leave Provisions for Permanent Employees (Effective Jan. 1 – Jun. 30, 2021)

  • Interchangeability of Leave: Employees may use accrued sick leave, vacation leave, and bonus leave interchangeably for COVID-19-related absences only (child/elder care, cannot telework, etc.); however, this paid leave cannot be used to cover hours during which an employee is on emergency temporary furlough. This provision also does not allow interchangeability of leave usage regarding the leave options provided in state policy for retirement, transfer, or separation.
  • Dual State Employee Household: If more than one person in the household is a state employee, then the employees are expected to work with their supervisors to determine how to allocate paid administrative leave to avoid inappropriate overlap of leave usage for child and elder care needs.
  • Other Absences: Employees who were on other pre-approved leave or are unavailable for reasons other than provided above must use available and applicable leave types, e.g., vacation leave, parental leave, bonus leave, compensatory time, or take leave without pay.
  • Part-time/Fluctuating Schedules: For part-time employees with fluctuating schedules, COVID-19 paid administrative leave may be applied as allowed above, but consideration should be given to the employee’s average hours per week over the course of a month. In no case shall paid administrative leave exceed forty hours per week.
  • Mandatory Employees: While management will give every possible consideration to individual personal circumstances, management has the discretion to deny or defer special leave provisions for mandatory employees whose presence is determined necessary to address urgent public health, public safety, or critical infrastructure needs. Special consideration should be given to COVID-19 Mandatory Employees who are determined to be high risk for contracting COVID‐19 or who are providing care to someone at high risk. Managers should contact the Equal Opportunity and Compliance Office at eoc@unc.edu if a COVID-19 Mandatory Employee requests special consideration because of their own health condition and management believes they are not able to provide that consideration.

COVID-19 Shared Leave Bank

The COVID-19 Shared Leave Bank Program has been extended through Jun. 30, 2021. Leave-earning employees who are unable to report to work onsite or telework for covered COVID-19-related reasons may be eligible to receive COVID-19 Shared Leave. Employees must have exhausted all available paid leave prior to participating in the leave bank program. For program specifics, including eligibility criteria, how to apply for COVID-19 shared leave, how to donate shared leave to the bank, and links to the forms, please visit the COVID-19 Shared Leave web page on the OHR website.

Expanded Community Service Leave (CSL)

*All leave referenced in updated provisions is pro-rated for part-time employees.

Expanded CSL for COVID-19

Management may approve eligible employees to use up to 80 hours of Expanded Community Service Leave (CSL) to work with non-profit organizations on COVID-19 volunteer activities. Such activities may include sewing masks for health care workers, organizing food drives, or donating blood. These hours are accounted for separately from an employee’s regular CSL (Option A) allotment. The Expanded CSL provision is an extension of the traditional COVID-19 Shared Leave web pageCommunity Service Leave policy and includes the same program requirements but is specifically for COVID-19 related activities. Please visit the NC Disaster Assistance web page to learn how you can help.

Expanded CSL & Literacy, Tutoring, and Mentoring and Related School Activity

Separate from the 80 hours of Expanded COVID-19 CSL leave mentioned above, OSHR has expanded the activities eligible for the child involvement aspects of the usual CSL program and has provided additional CSL leave for this purpose through June 30, 2021.

OSHR “reset” the balances for annual CSL allotments for all eligible employees. As of Aug. 17, employees have 24 hrs. of regular CSL – Option A or a new 36-hour optional program for participation in literacy, tutoring, and mentoring programs available through the end of the calendar year.

The 24 hours (CSL – Option A) can be used for each year for regular volunteer activities and child involvement as outlined in the original Community Service Leave policy. Child involvement includes:

  • Meeting with a teacher or administrator concerning the employee’s child.
  • Attending any function sponsored by the school in which the employee’s child is participating (This provision shall only be used with non-athletic programs that are a part of, or supplement to, the school’s academic or artistic programs.)

The alternative 36 hours of CSL can be used for participation in literacy, tutoring, and mentoring programs, but provides more flexibility allowing employees to assist their children with virtual learning needs. Employees may choose to use either the 24-hour program or the 36-hour program and cannot use both.

In addition, OSHR has provided certain expansion of allowable activities through the remainder of the calendar year to provide more flexibility to employees in use of CSL.

  • If the employee is opting to use the 36-hour CSL, the hours per week used may vary week to week. Normally, this is assumed to be one hour per week throughout a school academic year, but greater flexibility has been provided so that hours can be used by the end of the year.
  • Tutoring and mentoring shall be in a formal standardized program or may include non-conventional tutoring/mentoring arrangements to include plans and activities in a virtual academic setting.
  • The tutoring session may be carried out virtually and/or in-person. This may include students as a part of a cohort or may include an employee’s own child(ren).school academic year, but greater flexibility has been provided so that hours can be used by the end of the year.
  • The definition is expanded for “at-risk” students who, by virtue of their circumstances, are more likely than others to fail academically, to include those who require temporary or ongoing support to succeed academically.
  • The definition of “school” is expanded to include an organization that is authorized to operate under the laws of the State of North Carolina (an elementary, middle or high school) to include recognition of the current virtual academic setting.

Expanded CSL for Election Poll Working

  • Eligible employees may to use up to 24 of the 80 hours of the Expanded COVID-19 Community Service Leave (CSL) that was issued on Aug. 1, 2020 for volunteer activities in October and November in order to serve in roles needed by their County Boards of Elections during Early Voting (Oct. 15-31) and on Election Day (Nov. 3).
  • For early voting, a poll worker volunteer can work in any county and does not have to be registered to vote; on Election Day, poll worker volunteers must be registered to vote in their county of residence and can only work the polls in that county.
  • Needs vary by county, but County Boards of Elections are actively recruiting and training volunteers. Advance training also be required.

Time/Pay Entry

  • SHRA non-exempt permanent, temporary, and student employees working remotely should capture or enter their times in and out in their timecards to ensure they are paid correctly. If the employee is unable to do this, they should contact their manager or TIM Administrator to enter their times worked in TIM. Hours worked or leave taken must be entered in non-exempt employee timecards for them to be paid.
  • SHRA and EHRA exempt permanent employees in TIM will continue to be paid on autopay. They should enter their compensatory, sick, vacation, or bonus leave hours in TIM for hours they do not work and that do not qualify for special leave provisions related to COVID-19.

COVID-19 Leave Information 

Below is a summary of the COVID-19 work and leave provisions that are available to permanent faculty and staff.  These provisions are effective Jan. 1, 2021 through Mar. 31, 2021. 

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) expired Dec. 31, 2020. UNC-CH is closely monitoring activity by the federal government, which may take steps to extend, modify or pass new legislation in 2021 to provide additional COVID-19 related leave. For information on the FFCRA leave benefits that were available to eligible employees in 2020, please visit the: 

COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL) 

The coverage and terms of the COVID-19 PAL have continued to evolve since Mar. 2020. We encourage employees to check back for updates and to read the provided details carefully. The following provisions are effective Jan. 1 – Mar. 31, 2021. 

Up to 160 hours of cumulative COVID-19 PAL is available to permanent employees from Mar. 16, 2020 through Mar. 31, 2021 for the following reasons: 

  • The employee is subject to a quarantine or isolation order, has been advised to self-quarantine by a health care provider or public health official; or 
  • The employee has had exposure to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and is awaiting a diagnosis (the employee may or may not be demonstrating symptoms). 

How COVID-19 PAL Works

  • Eligible employees may receive up to 80 hours before exhausting their own accrued leave. 
  • Once the first 80 hours have been exhausted, the employee must use their accrued leave and paid time off for the absences. 
  • After the employee has exhausted their accrued leave and paid time off, then the employee may receive an additional 80 hours of COVID-19 PAL for the absences.    

Note:  If an employee used Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) or COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave (PAL) in 2020 for any of the reasons below then those hours must be deducted from the COVID-19 PAL entitlement.  

  1. Employee is subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
  2. Employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine related to COVID-19;
  3. Employee is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and is seeking a medical diagnosis.  

COVID-19 PAL cannot be used intermittently and must be taken in full-day increments. Employees who have symptoms of a communicable disease and are required to stay home, or who are ill with the communicable disease, must not to return to work until they are fully recovered in accordance with current CDC or NC Division of Public Health guidelines. If you are not feeling well, please follow the procedures on the Employee Health and Wellness during COVID-19 page 

Employee Instructions 

If you need leave for one of the reasons above, please notify your supervisor and contact your departmental HR Representative for assistance. To request COVID-19 PAL, you, your supervisor, and TIM Administrator must complete the COVID-19 PAL Request Form. Please email the completed form to leave@unc.edu 

The Leave Administration Team in the Office of Human Resources will review your request form and communicate with you and your department regarding the status of your request for COVID-19 PAL. Should you have any questions about your request, you may call the Benefits & Leave Administration Support Center at (919) 962-3071 or email us at leave@unc.edu. 

Time/Pay Entry 

Employees will need to coordinate with their TIM Administrator for proper record keeping and reporting of these hours for payment. The TIM Administrator will enter this information on the employee’s timecard for this to roll into Payroll for proper payment.  

TIM Administrators: For “how-to” questions, please email timsupport@unc.edu 

Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) 

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was created to assist employees who have work available but who are unable to work or telework due to COVID-19 qualifying events. The FFCRA provides eligible employees with two types of paid leave: Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML).  These new benefits are effective May 1, 2020 through Dec. 31, 2020.     

Eligible employees may receive paid leave under FFCRA for the following qualifying reasons:    

  • The employee is subject to a government-ordered quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19.   
  1. The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19. 
  2. The employee is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and is seeking medical diagnosis. 
  3. The employee is caring for an individual who is subject to a government-ordered quarantine or a health care provider’s recommendation to self-quarantine. 
  4. The employee is caring for a child whose school or place of care has been closed due to COVID-19, or the child’s regular childcare provider is unavailable due to COVID-19.
  5. The “employee is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Labor.”   

For more information on the FFCRA leave provisions, please visit the:    

Expanded Community Service Leave 2020 

The UNC System has authorized several changes to Community Service Leave (CSL) options for employees available through the end of the calendar year, including Expanded COVID-19 CSL, Expanded CSL for Election Poll Working, and Expanded CSL for Literacy, Tutoring, Mentoring and Related School Activity. 

Learn more: CSL Expansion 2020 

COVID-19 Shared Leave Bank 

UNC-Chapel Hill has created a COVID-19 Shared Leave Program under which employees may contribute leave for use by UNC-CH employees who need leave for specific COVID-19 related reasons. To qualify for shared leave, eligible employees must have been employed by the University for at least 30 days and have exhausted all personal leave and paid time off.  The COVID-19 Shared Leave Bank Program will begin Sep. 1, 2020 and will end Dec. 31, 2020.  For program specifics, including eligibility criteria, how to apply for COVID-19 shared leave, how to donate shared leave to the bank, and links to the forms, please visit the COVID-19 Shared Leave web page on the OHR website. 

COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave   

The UNC System Office provides for COVID-19 paid administrative leave in specific circumstances. The coverage and terms of the COVID-19 paid administrative leave have continued to evolve since March, so we encourage employees to check back for updates and to read the provided details carefully. The following provisions are effective Aug. 1, 2020 until revised or rescinded. 

COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave is available for permanent employees only in the following circumstances: 

  • When the employee exceeds the daily rate caps under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and is approved for Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) Reasons 1 – 3, “Administrative Absence” leave will be used to bring the employee to their regular rate of pay. 
  • When the employee exceeds the daily rate caps under the FFCRA and is approved for EPSL Reason 4 – 5 and/or Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML), “Administrative Absence” leave will be used to bring the employee to two-thirds of their regular rate of pay. Employees are responsible for further supplementing the difference between their normal pay and what is covered by the combination of FFCRA and “Administrative Absence” leave by using their own accrued leave and/or other accrued paid time off. 
  • For elder care needs due to COVID-19-related elder care facility closings, COVID-19 paid administrative leave or “AA – Eldercare” is available at two-thirds of the employee’s pay for the period of scheduled time they are unavailable due to providing elder care. This leave is provided equivalent to the same compensation rules and eligibility requirements applied to FFCRA for childcare. This also means that the maximum elder care benefit for an employee is 12 weeks (or fewer, depending on the employee’s FMLA eligibility). Once all FFCRA-equivalent leave is exhausted, employees must use their accrued leave or accrued paid time off for hours not worked. Please contact the OHR Benefits and Leave Administration Support Center to determine whether you are eligible for “AA – Elder Care” leave (email leave@unc.edu). 
  • If an employee is unable to work for absences due to reasons outlined in the FFCRA to qualify for EPSL Reasons 1 – 3  (subject to a quarantine/isolation order, advised to self-quarantine, or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms) and the employee has exhausted their FFCRA leave benefits, accrued leave, and accrued paid time off (comp time, etc.). In those limited circumstances, employees who have exhausted all accrued leave will receive COVID-19 paid administrative leave or “AA – EPSL 1-3 Exhaust” at 100% of their pay, cumulative up to 160 hours through Dec. 31, 2020.  Please contact OHR Benefits and Leave Administration to determine whether you are eligible for “AA – EPSL 1-3 Exhaust” leave (email leave@unc.edu). 

Time/Pay Entry  

SHRA non-exempt permanent, temporary, and student employees working remotely should capture or enter their times in and out in their timecards to ensure they are paid correctly. If the employee is unable to do this, they should contact their manager or TIM administrator to enter their times worked in TIM. Hours worked or leave taken must be entered in non-exempt employee timecards for them to be paid.   

SHRA and EHRA exempt permanent employees in TIM will continue to be paid on autopay. They should enter their compensatory, sick, vacation, or bonus leave hours in TIM for hours they do not work and that do not qualify for special leave provisions related to COVID-19. 

TIM Administrators  

The FFCRA and Paid Administrative Leave Calculator will tell you what pay codes to use and what amounts to enter in TIM for employees who have been approved for FFCRA leave and COVID-19 paid administrative leave. The FFCRA and Paid Administrative Leave Calculator is located on the HR Community Toolkit (under “Payroll Schedules & Tools”). For ‘how to’ TIM questions, TIM Administrators can email timsupport@unc.edu. 

Other Leave Provisions  

  • Through Dec. 31, 2020, employees may use accrued sick leave, vacation leave, and bonus leave interchangeably, regardless of the reason for the employee’s absence; however, paid leave cannot be used to cover hours on which an employee is on emergency temporary furlough: 
    • Example 1: An employee may request a day off for personal reasons and use sick leave instead of vacation leave. 
    • Example 2: An employee may use sick leave to cover the University Closed Days on Dec. 30 and 31, 2020. 
  • Temporary employees may be eligible for FFCRA leave benefits, if allowed by those provisions. Consistent with prior issued guidance, units have the discretion (including student employees) to end their temporary employment. Temporary employees whose employment has ended may not be eligible for benefits under FFCRA. Please review the FFCRA guidelines carefully. On-student temporary employees are no longer eligible for COVID-19 paid administrative leave as of June 1. 
  • If more than one person in the household is a state employee, then the employees are expected to work with their supervisors to determine how to allocate paid administrative leave to avoid inappropriate overlap of leave usage for child and elder care needs.  
  • Employees who were on other pre-approved leave or are unavailable for reasons other than provided above must use available and applicable leave types, e.g. vacation leave, parental leave, bonus leave, compensatory time, or take leave without pay.  
  • For part-time employees with fluctuating schedules, COVID-19 paid administrative leave may be applied as allowed above, but consideration should be given to the employee’s average hours per week over the course of a month. In no case shall paid administrative leave exceed forty hours per week. 
  • While management will give every possible consideration to individual personal circumstances, management has the discretion to deny or defer special leave provisions for mandatory employees whose presence is determined necessary to address urgent public health, public safety, or critical infrastructure needs. Special consideration should be given to COVID-19 Mandatory Employees who are determined to be high risk for contracting COVID19 or who are providing care to someone at high risk. Managers should contact the Equal Opportunity and Compliance Office at eoc@unc.edu if a COVID-19 Mandatory Employee requests special consideration because of their own health condition and management believes they are not able to provide that consideration.

Paid administrative leave is available for permanent employees for the following qualifying reasons and subject to terms and limitations outlined below

  1. Employees who are not expected to report to a University worksite but cannot telework because their position and duties cannot be performed remotely, and because reasonable alternate remote work is not feasible or productive, may receive COVID-19 paid administrative leave at of one-third the employee’s pay for the scheduled hours they cannot telework. Paid administrative cannot apply to hours worked or hours where leave is used for other purposes.
  2. For elder care needs due to COVID-19-related elder care facility closings, employees may receive COVID-19 paid administrative leave at two-thirds of the employee’s pay for the period of scheduled time they are unavailable due to providing elder care. This leave is provided equivalent to the same compensation rules and eligibility requirements applied to FFCRA for childcare. This also means that the maximum elder care benefit for an employee is 12 weeks (or fewer, depending on the employee’s FMLA eligibility). Once all FFCRA-equivalent leave is exhausted, employees may receive COVID-19 paid administrative leave at one-third of the employee’s pay for scheduled hours they cannot work due to elder care needs.***Example: if an employee works 10 hours per week and then uses 30 hours of COVID-19 paid administrative leave due to elder care activities, then the employee receives 10 hours of pay at 100% (for hours worked), the equivalent of 20 hours of COVID-19 paid leave (two-thirds of 30 hours for elder care), and then must use the equivalent of 10 hours (one-third of 30 hours for elder care) of their own accrued leave or paid time off to maintain full compensation.
  3. To supplement Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML) to bring the employee to two-thirds pay. Eligible employees are responsible for further supplementing the difference between their normal pay and what is covered by the combination of FFCRA and paid administrative leave by using their own accrued leave and/or other accrued paid time off.
  4. Once FFCRA leave is exhausted and for individuals who are exempt from FFCRA, employees may receive COVID-19 paid administrative leave at one-third of the employee’s pay for scheduled hours they cannot work due to the reason outlined in the FFCRA to qualify for EPSL and/or EFML.
  5. In addition, once an employee has exhausted all of their accrued leave and paid time off, absences due to reasons outlined in the FFCRA to qualify for EPSL Reasons 1 – 3 (subject to quarantine/isolation order, advised to self-quarantine, or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and awaiting a diagnosis), the employee will receive COVID-19 paid administrative leave at 100% of the employee’s pay, up to 160 hours.  
  1. Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) provides up to two weeks of EPSL (80 hours, pro-rated for part-time employees) to all active employees (both permanent and temporary). Health care providers and emergency responders may be excluded from eligibility. This leave is counted separately from a permanent employee’s normally accrued sick leave. 
    1. EPSL is paid at 100% of the employee’s pay, up to $511 daily and $5,110 total*, if the employee is unable to work, including unable to telework, because the employee:
      1. is subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;  
      2. has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine for COVID-19-related reasons; or  
        1. is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and is seeking a medical diagnosis.
    2. EPSL (used June 1, 2020 or later) is paid at two-thirds of the employee’s pay up to $200 daily and $2,000 total*, if the employee is unable to work, including unable to telework, because the employee: 

      1. is caring for an individual with whom the employee has a personal relationship (such as an immediate family member, roommate or other similar person) and who is subject to an order described in 1.a.i. above or a recommendation described in 1.a.ii. above; 
      2. needs to care for his or her child whose school or place of care is closed (or childcare provider is unavailable) due to COVID-19 related reasons; or 
      3. is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (none has been declared at this time). 
        *The University will supplement the EPSL leave with COVID-19 paid administrative leave up to two-thirds of the employee’s pay. The employee is responsible for the remaining one-third of these hours through their own accrued leave and/or other accrued paid time off. 
    3. If an employee has exhausted all of their FFCRA leave, they must use available accrued leave or other paid time, or go on leave without pay.
  2. Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML): the FFCRA also provides up to twelve weeks of Family & Medical Leave for employees who need to care for their child whose school or place of care is closed (or childcare provider is unavailable) due to COVID-19 related reasons. This benefit is available to any employee (permanent or temporary) who has been employed by the institution for at least 30 calendar days. Health care providers and emergency responders may be excluded from eligibility. The following provisions apply: 
    1. The first two weeks of the EFML is unpaid. For the remaining weeks of EFML (up to ten weeks) used June 1, 2020 or later, FFCRA provides two-thirds of the employee’s pay up to $200 daily or $10,000 total. The University will supplement the EFML leave with COVID-19 paid administrative leave at a rate of two-thirds of their pay. The employee is responsible for the remaining one-third of these hours through their own accrued leave and/or other accrued paid time off. 
    2. Employees may use EPSL, if available, to cover the first two weeks of EFML, or use other available accrued personal leave or paid time off if no EPSL is available.
    3. EFML does not extend the total number of weeks of FMLA leave an eligible employee may use within a 12-month period. 
    4. If an employee has exhausted all of their FFCRA leave, they must use available accrued leave or other paid time, or go on leave without pay. 
      For more information about FFCRA leave benefits, please visit 
      hr.unc.edu/benefits/ffcra. 
  3. COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave: Permanent employees are eligible for COVID-19 paid administrative leave at two-thirds of their pay for the period of scheduled time they are unavailable to work in the following circumstances:
    1. The employee cannot telework because their position and duties cannot be performed remotely, and reasonable alternate remote work is not feasible or productive. The COVID-19 paid administrative leave may only be applied to the scheduled hours they cannot telework and not to hours worked or hours where leave is used for other purposes. 
    2. The employee cannot work because they have eldercare needs due to COVID-19-related facility closings. The paid administrative leave may only be applied to the scheduled hours they are unavailable due to providing elder care. This leave is provided equivalent to the same compensation rules and eligibility requirements applied to FFCRA for child care.*
      *Example: if an employee works 10 hours per week and then uses 30 hours of COVID-19 paid administrative leave due to elder care activities, then the employee receives 10 hours of pay at 100% (for hours worked), the equivalent of 20 hours of COVID-19 paid leave (two-thirds of 30 hours for elder care), and then must use the equivalent of 10 hours (one-third of 30 hours for elder care) of their own accrued leave or paid time off to maintain full compensation. 
    3. To supplement EPSL and/or EFML to bring the employee to two-thirds pay, as described in 1 and 2 above. Eligible employees are responsible for further supplementing the difference between their normal pay and what is covered by the combination of FFCRA and paid administrative leave by using their own accrued leave and/or other accrued paid time off.
  4. Other Leave Provisions:

    1. Temporary employees may be eligible for FFCRA leave benefits, if allowed by those provisions. Consistent with prior issued guidance, units have the discretion (including student employees) to end their temporary employment. Temporary employees whose employment has ended may not be eligible for benefits under FFCRA. Please review the FFCRA guidelines carefully.

      Non-student temporary employees are no longer eligible for COVID-19 paid administrative leave as of June 1.

    2. Student employees may be eligible for FFCRA leave benefits, if allowed by those provisions. Consistent with prior issued guidance, units have the discretion to end temporary employment, including for student employees. Temporary employees whose employment has ended may not be eligible for benefits under FFCRA. Please review the FFCRA guidelines carefully.

      Student employees are eligible for paid administrative leave, 
      in accordance with the provisions, limitations, and eligibility requirements set forth above, for times they were otherwise expected to or had previously agreed to work. 
    3. If more than one person in the household is a state employee, then the employees are expected to work with their supervisors to determine how to allocate paid administrative leave to avoid inappropriate overlap of leave usage for child and elder care needs. 
    4. Employees who were on other pre-approved leave or are unavailable for reasons other than provided above must use available and applicable leave types; e.g. vacation leave, parental leave, bonus leave, compensatory time, or take leave without pay.  
    5. Through December 31, 2020, employees may use accrued sick leave, vacation leave, and bonus leave interchangeably, regardless of the reason for the employee’s absence; however, paid leave cannot be used to cover hours on which an employee is on emergency temporary furlough
    6. For part-time employees with fluctuating schedules, COVID-19 paid administrative leave may be applied as allowed above, but consideration should be given to the employee’s average hours per week over the course of a month. In no case shall paid administrative leave exceed forty hours per week.
    7. While management will give every possible consideration to individual personal circumstances, management has the discretion to deny or defer special leave provisions for mandatory employees whose presence is determined necessary to address urgent public health, public safety, or critical infrastructure needs. Special consideration should be given to COVID-19 Mandatory Employees who are determined to be high risk for contracting COVID‐19 or who are providing care to someone at high risk. Managers should contact the Equal Opportunity and Compliance Office at eoc@unc.edu if a COVID-19 Mandatory Employee requests special consideration because of their own health condition and management believes they are not able to provide that consideration.

Permanent and student employees not designated as COVID-19 Mandatory Employees will be granted paid administrative leave for the following qualifying reasons:   

  1. The employee is quarantined by a public health official due to possible exposure but has not been determined to be infected with COVID-19 (Note: Quarantine by a public health official is distinct from the state-wide Stay at Home Order effective March 30, 2020.); 
  2. The employee is having symptoms potentially related to COVID-19 (fever, cough, shortness of breath) or caring for a dependent with such symptoms. 
  3. The employee is high risk for COVID-19 infection or is a caregiver to someone who is high risk. 
  4. The employee must care for a child or parent due to a childcare/eldercare facility or school closing, care for a spouse, or 
  5. The employee is not a COVID-19 Mandatory Employee and due to the nature of their position, cannot perform their duties remotely and an alternative remote working arrangement is not possible. 

There are additional leave benefits available under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) that may operate in conjunction with available administrative leave and are effective May 1 through December 31, 2020. In particular, the FFCRA provides for Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML) for certain qualifying reasons. If an employee is eligible for the FFCRA leave benefits, the FFCRA leave must be applied before COVID-19 paid administrative leave is available.  

If needed, the University will supplement the pay of employees receiving FFCRA benefits with COVID-19 paid administrative leave so that they receive full pay without drawing on other available accrued leave balances. If COVID-19 paid administrative leave is expired or not available, employees may use other paid leave available to them to supplement the pay provided under the FFCRA. For more information about FFCRA leave benefits, please visit hr.unc.edu/benefits/ffcra.   

For COVID-19 Mandatory Employees, management may approve paid administrative leave for the qualifying reasons listed above. While management will give every possible consideration to individual personal circumstances, management has the discretion to deny or defer administrative leave for mandatory employees whose presence is determined necessary to address urgent public health, public safety, or critical infrastructure needs. 

Special consideration should be given to COVID-19 Mandatory Employees who are determined to be high risk for contracting COVID‐19 or who are providing care to someone at high risk. Managers should contact the Equal Opportunity and Compliance Office at eoc@unc.edu if a COVID-19 Mandatory Employee requests special consideration because of their own health condition and management believes they are not able to provide that consideration.   

For non-student temporary employees, each unit has discretion to offer full or partial paid administrative leave based on available funds and operational needs or to end temporary appointments as deemed appropriate.   

Employees who were on other pre‐approved leave, choose not to work, or are unavailable for reasons other than provided for in the special COVID‐19 provisions must use available and applicable leave types; e.g. vacation leave, parental leave, bonus leave, compensatory time, or take leave without pay.    

If more than one person in the household is a state employee and the employees are seeking paid administrative leave because they have childcare or eldercare needs due to COVID‐19‐related facility closings, then the employees are expected to work with their supervisors to determine how to allocate paid administrative leave to avoid inappropriate overlap of leave usage.