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ASU Parental Leave Policy

Parental Leave Information

Effective October 16, 2006 
Amended June 11, 2018
Amended November 30, 2018
Amended December 4, 2018
Amended January 24, 2019
Amended July 1, 2019

ASU recognizes that supporting employees as they balance career, childbirth, and family life ultimately benefits the university. This paid parental leave policy regards family care concerns as legitimate and important. One goal of this parental leave policy is to make it more feasible for employees to remain in active employment at ASU during the birth of an employee's child or placement of a child for adoption.

The information provided below is for informational purposes only. Please see ACD 710 and SPP 708 for the complete policies governing ASU’s Parental Leave benefit. 

  1. All benefits-eligible (50% FTE or more) ASU employees, including faculty, academic professionals, administrators, service professionals, university staff, and classified staff, who have been employed at ASU for at least 12-months and have worked at least 1,250 hours during the previous 12-months may request twelve weeks of paid leave for the purpose of recovery from childbirth and/or to care for and bond with a newborn or newly adopted child. Paid parental leave is available to be used in a single twelve-week block of time commencing upon the birth of the child or the adoption of the child.
  2. This paid leave may be used by the birth mother, father, adoptive parents and domestic (same or opposite sex) partners. If both parents are employed by ASU, the paid leave will be increased from 12 to 18 weeks, as long as neither parent takes more than 12 weeks.
  3. This paid leave will not reduce an employee's balance of accrued time under any other university paid leave program (e.g., sick time, vacation).
  4. This paid leave may run concurrently with FMLA and is limited to a total of twelve-weeks per birth or adoption per family.
  5. Graduate research and teaching associates/assistants with .50 FTE appointments and postdoctoral scholars may receive twelve weeks of paid leave for purposes of recovering from childbirth.
  6. The 12-month waiting period is waived for tenured/tenure-track faculty and continuing/probationary academic professionals.
  7. The parental leave will coordinate benefits with any group disability income replacement benefit policy ( i.e., short term disability insurance), up to100 percent of base salary.
  8. If the employee fails to return to work after the expiration of this leave and/or any other authorized leave period (e.g., Family Leave, Extended Leave of Absence or Health-Related Leave) or returns to work but fails to remain for at least 30 days, the employee agrees to reimburse ASU the salary paid under this policy. ASU will excuse reimbursement where the failure to return is due to the continuation, recurrence, or onset of a serious health condition of the employee or the child which would otherwise entitle the employee to leave under FMLA; or other circumstances beyond the employee's control.
  9. Should the period of paid parental leave end during the semester, unit chairs/directors and deans are expected to accommodate requests for temporary assignment of alternative duties to the end of the academic semester in progress for tenure-track/tenured faculty, or for the ensuing semester for those unable to take advantage of any part of the paid leave due to timing of the birth/adoption. Alternative duties should be designed to make it more feasible for the employee to remain on active full employment at the university following the birth of the employee's child or placement of a child for adoption. Also, any reduction in teaching is not to be made up at a later date.
  10. For faculty and academic professionals on probationary appointments, use of parental leave under this policy shall be considered good cause for extending the probationary period under ACD 506-03 and 507-05.
  11. Use of these parental benefits shall not adversely affect the employee's standing or consideration for future salary adjustments in any manner.   
  12. Sabbatical leaves are intended for professional development and may not be used for parental leave.
  13. Postdoctoral scholars and graduate students with a .50 FTE research or teaching assistantship (RA/TA) appointment who have completed at least one academic year's service are eligible for up to twelve weeks of paid parental leave for the birth or adoption of a child and will continue to receive their stipend and associated benefits (health insurance and tuition remission) during this twelve‐week period. If both parents are postdoctoral scholars or graduate students with a .50 FTE RA/TA appointment who have completed at least one academic year’s service, they may choose to split the leave between them. The department is responsible for funding these costs. The RA/TA must maintain a minimum enrollment of six credit hours during the term of paid leave. Any portion of the twelve-week period that falls outside the appointment term will reduce the amount of available paid parental leave on a pro‐rated basis.
  14. In an effort to allow students to return to the same academic status as before the pregnancy, accommodations and services for pregnant students are available through the Disability Resource Center.

Frequently asked questions

To support employees as they balance career, childbirth, and family life, ASU will be providing 12 weeks of paid leave to eligible employees during the birth of a child or placement of a child for adoption.

Eligible employees can request and receive up to 12 weeks of paid leave from their job following the birth of a child or adoption of a child. This paid leave will not reduce the employee's balance of accrued time under any other university paid leave program (e.g., sick time, vacation).

In addition, department chairs and deans are expected to accommodate requests for temporary assignment of alternate duties for tenure-track/tenured faculty. Examples of alternate duties include but are not limited to research, course development, curriculum development, working on program reviews or accreditation reviews and related documents, and the mentoring of graduate students. Should the period of paid parental leave end during the semester, unit chairs/directors and deans are expected to accommodate requests for temporary assignment of alternative duties to the end of the academic semester in progress for tenure-track/tenured faculty, or for the ensuing semester for those unable to take advantage of any part of the paid leave due to the timing of the birth/adoption. Any reduction in teaching is not required to be made up at a later date. The provision of a temporary assignment of alternate duties is intended to make it more feasible for tenured-track/tenure faculty to remain in active employment following the birth or adoption of a child.

All benefits-eligible employees (.50 FTE or greater), including faculty, academic professionals, administrators, service professionals, university staff, and classified staff members who have worked for ASU for not less than twelve (12) consecutive months in a benefits-eligible position and have worked at least 1250 hours during the previous 12 months.

This waiting period is waived for tenured/tenure-track faculty and for continuing/probationary academic professionals.

The paid leave may be used by the birth mother, father, adoptive parents and domestic (same or opposite sex) partners.

Paid parental leave is available for the 12-week period immediately following the birth of a newborn or the adoption of a child.

ASU does grant leaves of absences to employees who become new parents under its Family Leave policy. Family Leave is unpaid. To stay in pay status, employees have had to use their accrued and unused sick hours and/or vacation hours during the Family Leave period.

Additionally, ASU has granted leaves of absence to benefits-eligible employees who do not meet the eligibility criteria for Family Leave when they become new parents under its Extended Leave of Absence policy. Extended Leave is also unpaid unless the employee applies sick or vacation hours to remain in pay status.

The revised Parental Leave policy may run concurrently with Family Leave and provides those employees with 12 weeks of paid leave so that it is more feasible for employees to remain in pay status with ASU during the birth of a child or placement of a child for adoption. Employees will be responsible for applying their accrued and unused sick hours or vacation hours for any time taken beyond the first 12 weeks.

Employees who attain one year of service while on leave for the purpose of a birth or the adoption of a child will be eligible for a pro-rated portion of paid parental leave.

The waiting period is waived for tenured/tenure-track faculty and for continuing/probationary academic professionals.

In this situation, the academic year appointee is eligible to receive a pro-rated amount of paid parental leave for any portion of the 12-week period that occurs in the new academic year period. Should the period of paid parental leave end during the semester, unit chairs/directors and deans are expected to accommodate requests for temporary assignment of alternative duties to the end of the academic semester in progress for tenure-track/tenured faculty, or for the ensuing semester for those unable to take advantage of any part of the paid leave due to the timing of the birth/adoption. 

Use of Parental Leave will be considered good cause for extending the probationary period ( i.e., "tenure clock") under ACD 506-03 and ACD 507-02.

Will use of the Parental Leave policy adversely affect my employment with the University in any way?
No. Requesting to use Parental Leave will not adversely impact your standing and will not be a consideration for future salary adjustments in any manner. As noted above, for faculty and academic professionals on probationary appointments, use of parental leave is good cause for "stopping" the tenure clock.

Yes. 

Postdoctoral scholars and graduate students with a .50 FTE research or teaching assistantship (RA/TA) appointment who have completed at least one academic year's service are eligible for up to twelve weeks of paid parental leave for the birth or adoption of a child and will continue to receive their stipend and associated benefits (health insurance and tuition remission) during this twelve‐week period. If both parents are postdoctoral scholars or graduate students with a .50 FTE RA/TA appointment who have completed at least one academic year’s service, they may choose to split the leave between them. The department is responsible for funding these costs. The RA/TA must maintain a minimum enrollment of six credit hours during the term of paid leave. Any portion of the twelve-week period that falls outside the appointment term will reduce the amount of available paid parental leave on a pro‐rated basis.

Under the parental leave policy, graduate students (regular non-RA/TA students) who are recovering from childbirth may request an academic accommodation period for childbirth, allowing them to postpone university and departmental academic requirements and milestones for one semester while remaining enrolled.

The revised policy will go into effect on July 1, 2019.

No. One paid Parental Leave is available per family, per birth or adoption event. The number of children involved does not increase the length of paid parental leave granted for that event.

Paid parental leave may be used in cases of stillbirth. In such an event, a maximum of six (6) weeks of paid parental leave may be used. This form of paid parental leave is used in place of the university's bereavement policy ( ACD 702-04 or SPP 704-05 ). Additional time may be used under the Family Leave policy ( ACD 702-03 or SPP 705-02 ) and sick leave policy ( ACD 702-02 or SPP 701-01 ) when supported by medical documentation.

If you don't return from paid Parental Leave or any other authorized leave period (e.g. Family Leave, Extended Leave of Absence or Health-Related Leave) or you return but fail to stay for at least 30 days, you are responsible for reimbursing ASU the salary or wages paid under the Parental Leave policy. ASU will excuse reimbursement where the failure to return is due to the continuation, recurrence, or onset of a serious health condition of the employee or the child which would otherwise entitle you to leave under the Family Leave policy; or other circumstances beyond your control.

If you are a graduate RA/TA and you utilize the paid parental leave policy at the end of your final semester and do not return because your assistantship has concluded, you will be excused from reimbursing ASU the stipend paid out under the leave.

The policy for faculty and academic professionals is available at ACD 710.

The policy for administrators, service professionals and classified staff members is available at SPP 708.

The policy for postdoctoral scholars is available in the Postdoctoral Guidelines.