Leaves of Absence

Leaves of Absence

Parental Leave

Eligible bargaining unit members may apply for a paid parental leave equivalent to one semester. Leave can be taken during the semester a child is born, adopted (for child under age 5), or the semester immediately preceding or following the birth or adoption.  Applications should be submitted as soon as possible through your college human resources coordinator.


The following UMass Amherst employees who become biological or adoptive parents of a child under five years of age are eligible for parental leave under the CBA:

1. All full-time tenure and tenure-track faculty members;

2. All non-tenure-track faculty members who are not funded by grants, contracts, or gifts; and who have appointments that make it possible to fulfill the return obligation described below; 

3. All librarians


You must apply for parental leave no later than the latest of these three circumstances:

1. At least one semester before the proposed start of the leave; or

2. When you have knowledge of the impending birth or adoption of a child; or

3. When you have been granted an appointment that allows for the completion of there turn obligation (as explained in the policy).

You must take the leave in the semester in which the birth or adoption of your child occurs or in the semester immediately before or after the birth or adoption. You may take parental leave for a birth or adoption that occurs in the summer only in the spring semester before or the fall semester after that summer.


Submit the form below electronically to your department chair/head, attaching to it (or to the e-­mail that conveys it) a scan of the child’s birth certificate, adoption certificate, or letter from your doctor indicating the expected or actual date of birth.

Sick Leave

You may take parental leave only if you have accrued enough of your own sick leave or can supplement your own sick leave from the Sick Leave Bank (SLB) sufficient to cover the period of your leave. Therefore, an employee may not take parental leave for the first semester of employment because no sick leave will have been accrued. During your leave, view your electronic pay stub on the HR website to ensure that your time is being charged to sick leave and not to regular pay.

You may not use sick leave or the SLB to extend a parental leave unless such an extension is medically necessary as certified by a healthcare provider. For example, an eligible employee who expects to give birth in October may take parental leave for all of that fall semester, but if the employee chooses instead to take the parental leave in the following spring semester, the paid sick leave in that fall semester may only amount to the time medically necessary. To extend the time off that fall, the employee may take leave without pay and then take parental leave in spring.

Attached Files
Attachment Size
Parental Leave Application 180.75 KB

Leave Without Pay

Leaves without pay may be granted by the dean, with the approval of the provost, for reasons of personal health, reasons related to family issues, or for advanced study and research in connection with temporary employment or service that will be of value to the faculty member and the university. If you wish to be awarded a leave without pay, please complete the application form below, which will be reviewed by the bargaining unit member’s department chair, dean/director of Libraries, and the provost, who shall indicate their recommendations/decision on the leave approval form.

Attached Files
Attachment Size
Leave without pay application 222.03 KB