COVID-19 FAQ

As guidance continues to evolve in response to COVID–19 and the ongoing public health crisis impacting our community, this document was developed to assist staff members, from front line workers to management, navigate the complexities of different leaves and benefits through the University.

Definitions and types of leaves referenced in this FAQ

  1. UC Executive Order (EO), March 16, 2020: Grants up to 128 hours of UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave for all employees due to COVID–19 related reasons as defined in executive order.
    1. Executive order in English
    2. Aquí está la Orden Ejecutiva en español
  2. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) effective April 1, 2020, includes two new legislative federal entitlements 1) Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and 2) Expanded Family Medical Leave Act (EFMLA).
  3. President and Chancellors’ message, April 2, 2020: Assures continuity of employment and pay for career employees who have exhausted all eligible entitlements and for whom work is not available, through June 30, 2020.
  4. UCOP FAQ Guidance document April 6, 2020, revised on April 13, 2020, further revised on April 27, 2020, and further revised on May 4, 2020.

New: Virtual Office Hours

On Mondays and Thursdays, the Employee & Labor Relations team will be hosting virtual office hours for all staff. The purpose of the office hours is to provide a venue for staff to ask questions about the leave entitlements and job protection/pay guarantee outlined by the Office of the President and these frequently asked questions between May 11th and July 2nd. Office hours are held as follows:

During office hours, please do not share specifics about medical conditions or individual names. If you have a confidential question, please contact your Employee Relations analyst. Staff may enter and exit virtual office hours at any time. To ask a question when in office hours, please log into the meeting using your computer and type your question into the chat function in Zoom. Questions will be answered in the order they are received.

Instructions for Navigating the Document and Additional Questions

Before reviewing the campus-specific guidance below, all supervisors, managers, and staff should read the University of California summary of COVID–19 related leaves and job protection. If you have additional questions beyond those posed in the UCOP guidance document, please review the supplemental frequently asked questions below.

UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave

What is UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave?

Under the University’s Executive Order dated March 16, 2020, all staff, academic and student employees are eligible for up to 128 hours of UC expanded paid administrative leave with pay, effective March 1, 2020 (for part-time employees who hold positions with a fixed percentage of time, the number of hours available are prorated in proportion to their percent of appointment, employees who hold positions with a variable percentage of time, are subject to a lookback calculation); however, eligibility for the UC expanded paid administrative leave with pay does not mean that all employees will be granted the leave. Individual employees need to meet one of the three (3) criteria listed below in order to be eligible to use the UC expanded paid administrative leave and must work with their supervisor to determine which criteria they meet:

  1. When an employee is unable to work due to the employee’s own COVID–19- related illness or that of a family member;
  2. When an employee is unable to work because the employee has been directed not to come to the worksite for COVID–19-related reasons and/or the work site has implemented a COVID–19-related remote-work program or is under a shelter in place order and it is not operationally feasible for the employee to work remotely; or
  3. When an employee is unable to work because a COVID–19-related school or daycare closure requires the employee to be at home with a child or dependent, and it is not operationally feasible for the employee to work remotely or in conjunction with the childcare commitment.

In addition to meeting one of the three criteria above, supervisors must approve the UC expanded paid administrative leave after determining approval will not impact delivery of essential university services.

I am a new employee. Am I eligible for UC expanded paid administrative leave?

Yes. New employees are eligible for UC expanded paid administrative leave commensurate with their base appointment percentage. Therefore, if you were hired at 100% time, you would receive a 128-hour bank for COVID–19 related UC expanded paid administrative.

I’m over 65 and/or am immunocompromised and it is recommended that I stay home from work. Am I eligible for the UC expanded paid administrative?

Yes, employees 65 or older or those that are immunocompromised are eligible to use UC expanded paid administrative leave if they are not able to work remotely. If individuals in this group want to come to work and are performing essential functions to critical operations, individuals may come to work as long as they are asymptomatic.

What are the effective dates of the UC expanded paid administrative leave?

The dates that the UC expanded paid administrative leave can be used are between March 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020. The allotment will expire on December 31, 2020.

How are the allocated hours calculated for variable and per diem appointments?

The university will use a manual lookback calculation to determine the number of UC expanded paid administrative leave hours available to these employees. The calculation uses the total full-time hours over the last two monthly or 4 bi-weekly pay periods divided by full-time hours in those pay periods. This will yield a percentage, which is applied to the 128 hour bank.

For example, Jane is a non-exempt, biweekly employee who has a variable appointment and works between 10 and 30 hours per week. To establish the number of UC expanded paid administrative leave hours Jane is entitled to, SHR would use the following equation:

  1. Add up all the hours worked during the lookback period. For biweekly employees, that includes January 12, 2020 through January 25, 2020, January 26, 2020 through February 8, 2020, February 9, 2020 through February 22, 2020, and February 23, 2020 through March 7, 2020.
  2. Jane worked a total of 165 hour during the lookback period.
  3. There were 320 working hours in the 4 bi-weekly pay periods.
  4. Divide 165/320 = .51.56 or 52%
  5. 52% multiplied by 128 = 66.56 (rounded to nearest quarter hour= 66.50)
  6. Jane is entitled to 66.50 hours of UC expanded paid administrative leave for COVID–19 related work issues under the Executive Order.

Does this formula apply to student employees?

Yes, this formula would apply to student employees with variable appointments.

How do I apply the bank of UC expanded paid administrative leave to student or limited variable employees?

There is a difference between how many hours an individual is eligible for and how to apply those hours. In the case of a non-academic student or limited employee who has a variable appointment, but usually works on Mondays and Thursdays, first SHR would determine the number of hours the employee is eligible to use by applying the above formula. Once the number of hours is established, those hours should be used to cover the employee’s typical Monday and Thursday schedule if they are unable to work due to COVID–19 related criteria being met under President Napolitano’s Executive Order.

Are employees paid as a flat rate By Agreement eligible for the UC expanded paid administrative leave?

Yes, employees who are paid a by-agreement flat-rate amount for their work are eligible provided they meet the criteria and provisions outlined in the executive order, are eligible for UC expanded paid administrative leave with the following conditions:

  1. Any terms of an employment agreement that address the contingent nature of pay shall remain intact. This includes stipulations regarding cancellation of agreements, such as for lack of enrollment.
  2. If pay is contingent on work to be rendered and the appointee is unable to provide that work due to COVID–19-related criteria covered under President Napolitano’s Executive Order, then the UC expanded paid administrative Leave may be provided for work not finished based on a daily or hourly rate not to exceed 128 hours (16 days) and not to exceed the pay amount established in the terms of the employment agreement. An hourly or daily rate will be calculated based on the dollar amount and duration of the employment agreement.

If I ask my employee, who holds a variable appointment, to work significantly more hours in the coming months, which differ than from the hours they worked during the lookback time, how much UC expanded paid administrative leave hours are they eligible for?

It is important that we remain consistent with the direction that we received from UCOP and have employees record hours based on the lookback period and remain within the amount of hours that are allocated to them based on the lookback period. Therefore, variable employees paid administrative leave hours are determined based upon the lookback period of time and not any other period of time.

How many hours is a part-time employee entitled to?

Individuals with a fixed part-time schedule are eligible for UC expanded paid administrative leave based upon a prorated amount which is associated with their appointment percentage. For example, a 50% employee will be eligible for 64 hours (half of 128).

Individuals with a variable part-time schedule are eligible for UC expanded paid administrative leave based upon the established lookback period to determine an average number of working hours. For example, an employee appointed at 30% variable, who worked an average of 50% during the lookback period, would be eligible for 64 hours (half of 128).


Emergency Paid Sick Leave

What is Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)?

The new federal law, effective April 1, 2020, provides eligible employees up to eighty (80) hours of paid sick leave and applies to all employee types; career, partial-year career, contract, limited, by agreement (BYA), per diem and student employees.

How do I know if I am eligible for the Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)?

  1. You are unable to work or telecommute because you are subject to an isolation order, government quarantines, or shelter-in-place order;
  2. You have been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID–19;
  3. You are unable to work or telecommute because you are experiencing COVID–19 symptoms; An employee may not take EPSL for this reason if the employee does not actually seek a medical diagnosis.
  4. You are unable to work or telecommute because you are caring for an individual who is self-quarantined or experiencing COVID–19 symptoms;
    1. An individual can include an immediate family member, someone they live with, but it cannot be for taking time off to care for someone you do not know.
    2. Health care workers and emergency responders are not eligible to take EPSL for this purpose.
    3. The employee will need to identify the individual for whom care is being provided and their relationship to that individual.
  5. The employee is unable to work or telework because the employee is caring for their child whose school or place of care has closed (or whose child care provider is unavailable) due to COVID–19 precautions
    1. Health care workers and emergency responders are not eligible to take EPSL for this purpose.
    2. The employee will need to confirm that there is no other suitable person to care for the employee’s child during the period for which the employee is requesting EPSL.
    3. If the child is older than 14 and the employee will be caring for the child during daylight hours, the employee will need to explain the special circumstances that make it necessary for the employee to provide care to that child during that period.
    4. If the child is 18 years or older, the child must be incapable of self-care due to a mental or physical disability.
    5. If you are taking EPSL for this reason, your EPSL will run concurrently with your first 2 workweeks of EFML (which would otherwise be unpaid), provided you are eligible for EFML and have EFML entitlement remaining.
  6. You are unable to work or telecommute or are experiencing anything related to COVID–19.

Is documentation required to use Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)?

Yes. Employees should fill out the EPSL request form and submit it to their supervisor to discuss eligibility requirements as well as whether an eligible employee may use EPSL given operational considerations. Once EPSL has been approved, supervisors must send the signed EPSL form to covid-epsl-group@ucsc.edu. This form will need to be downloaded using Adobe Acrobat Pro. Tips for Using PDF Forms, saved to your desktop, completed electronically and saved again before sending it to SHR.  If you are having trouble with Adobe or are unable to complete the form electronically, please print, sign and scan the document to your supervisor who will need to review, approve and send to covid-epsl-group@ucsc.edu

If I have already started my EPSL leave do I still need to complete the required form?

Yes. Even if you have started using your EPSL hours, please work with your supervisor to complete the form.

Will the EPSL form be placed in my personnel file?

No. The forms will be kept by Staff Human Resources for record-keeping and audit purposes; however, they will not be placed in individual personnel files.

Do I have to apply for a leave of absence to use my Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL?)

No. After discussing use of EPSL with your supervisor, your supervisor will submit the signed form to your timekeeper for record-keeping purposes. No formal leave of absence process is necessary. Once approved, you will record your EPSL time in CruzPay and should work with your supervisor to designate your absence under EPSL.

How do I use and record EPSL in CruzPay?

To report your time in CruzPay for the EPSL leave entitlements, CruzPay is updated to include two new paycodes:
  1. COVID-EPSL-SELF (for employee’s own illness) – eligibility reasons 1-3
  2. COVID-EPSL-FAMILY (for employee caring for family members) – eligibility reasons 4 or 6

Is EPSL considered taxable income?

Yes, EPSL is considered taxable wages.

Will I continue to accrue vacation, sick time, and service credit while I am using EPSL?

Yes. While you are on pay status with EPSL you will continue to accrue vacation, sick time, and service credit at your regular accrual rate.

UPDATED: Can I use EPSL in hourly increments?

Yes, EPSL can be used in full-day increments for exempt staff and hourly for non-exempt staff. EPSL can be used intermittently.

If my work is shut down due to COVID–19 related reasons, such as the Seymour Marine Discovery Center, am I eligible for EPSL?

Maybe. If your work site or facility has been closed due to COVID–19 and there is no other University work available for you to do, you are not eligible for EPSL. If your work site or facility has been closed and there is additional work for you to do, but you cannot complete the work for one of the six (6) EPSL-qualifying reasons, you are eligible for EPSL.

An employee may not take EPSL if the University does not have work for the employee to do as a result of the quarantine or isolation order or other circumstances.

I was hired by the University on April 1, 2020. Am I eligible for EPSL?

Yes, all employees who are hired prior to or after April 1, 2020 are eligible for EPSL.

Is EPSL pro-rated for less than full-time employees?

Yes, employees who have a fixed, part-time schedule will have the 80 hours prorated to their base appointment percentage. Employees with a variable schedule will qualify for a portion of the 80 hours by using a six-month lookback period to determine their average work schedule.

If I can work from home, but I am the individual responsible for childcare and therefore unable to work, can I use EPSL?

Yes. If you are the individual responsible for childcare for your children/dependent during COVID-related school or daycare closures, you are eligible for EPSL even if you could work from home.

I am a newly hired, part-time, variable employee. How many hours of EPSL am I eligible for?

Newly hired, part-time, variable employees are eligible for EPSL based on a lookback period of six months to determine their average workweek schedule across a biweekly pay period. If you have worked less than six-months, then the University will use a lookback calculation using your hours on pay status to determine the appropriate amount of EPSL. If you are hired on or after April 1, 2020, the University will use your base appointment percentage to determine your available EPSL hours.

How will I know how many hours I have to use?

CruzPay has been programmed to include the Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) hours that employees are eligible to use.  The number of hours you have available is visible at the bottom of your time record in the “Time-Off Balances tab."

Can I save my Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and use them in the future?

EPSL is specific to COVID–19 related issues and is only available through December 31, 2020.


Expanded Family Medical Leave

What is Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML)?

New federal leave entitlement under FMLA for eligible employees who are unable to work or telecommute because a COVID–19 related school or daycare closure which requires the employee to be at home with a child or dependent, and it is not operationally feasible for the employee to work remotely or in conjunction with the childcare commitment.

Eligible employees who have a qualifying EFML event are entitled up to twelve (12) weeks of job protected paid leave.

EFML is available only if you have FMLA entitlement remaining (you haven’t used it all) in the current calendar year; if an employee has already taken any FMLA this year, they would only be eligible to use the remaining time of their twelve (12) week entitlement.

For example, if an employee had surgery in January 2020 and was absent under FMLA for four (4) weeks, they would have eight (8) weeks of FMLA entitlement remaining in the current calendar year. If they have a qualifying event due to a COVID–19 related school or daycare closure, they would have eight (8) weeks of leave entitlement under EFML.

How do I know if I am eligible for EFML?

You are eligible if you meet both of these requirements:
1. You have a child who is under 18 years of age whose childcare or school has been closed due to COVID–19 related issues, and you are unable to work or telecommute due to childcare; and
2. You have been on payroll with the University for a minimum of thirty (30) calendar days.

If your child is between the ages of 14 and 18, you will need to demonstrate on the EFML Request form (discussed below) why you need to stay home and provide for childcare.

I work at the student health center or the UCSC police department. Am I eligible for EFML?

No. Health care workers and first responders are not eligible for EFML.

What is the process to request EFML?

Eligible employees who have a qualifying event regarding childcare or school closure COVID–19 related reasons will need to request a leave of absence under EFML by completing an EFML Request form and submitting this to their Leave of Absence Coordinator.

Do I need to provide any documentation to request leave under EFML?

Yes, an EFML Request form will need to be completed and submitted to your Leave of Absence Coordinator to request leave under EFML. Once eligibility is confirmed, a formal notification will be sent to the employee and supervisor informing them of approved leave under EFML. The form, which is available on UC Santa Cruz’s Staff HR website, will be used to process your leave. This form will need to be downloaded using Adobe Acrobat Pro. Tips for Using PDF Forms, saved to your desktop, completed electronically and saved again before sending it to SHR.  If you are having trouble with Adobe or are unable to complete the form electronically, please print, sign and scan the document to your supervisor who will need to review, approve and send to covid-epsl-group@ucsc.edu

Am I eligible for EFML to care for a child who is not my legal dependent, but for whom I am the primary caregiver?

No, EFML may only be used to care for your child or legal dependent.

Does EFML apply for elder care?

No, EFML cannot be used for elder care.

My dependent child has a disability and is over 18 years of age. Do I qualify for EFML?

Yes. If the child is 18 years or older, the child’s normal care facility is closed, and the child is incapable of self-care due to a mental or physical disability, an employee is eligible for EFML.

If I have already started my EFML leave do I still need to complete the required form?

Yes. Even if you have started using your EFML hours, please work with your supervisor to complete the form.

Can I use EFML intermittently?

UPDATED: Yes, you can use EFML intermittently.

I have questions about EFML. Who do I contact?

Please contact your Leave of Absence Coordinator for more information.


Questions for Managers/Supervisors

What is the definition of an essential service?

Managers are responsible for determining what positions and the amount of workers needed to maintain necessary campus operations. This will be different from unit to unit and may evolve over time as shelter in place orders and/or COVID–19 guidance changes frequently.

At this time, UC Systemwide is not paying “hazard pay” to employees deemed to provide essential services needed to maintain campus operations.

My employee doesn’t have a computer at home but I would like them to work remotely. What now?

If your employee requires a computer to work from home and your unit cannot provide one, your employee would be eligible for UC expanded paid administrative leave under the executive order.

Will the university be reimbursing internet expenses, providing additional computers, etc.?

At this time, the University will not be reimbursing for internet services or purchasing additional equipment to allow employees to work from home. Please see the above question regarding equipment limitations for at-home work.

Do I need to create a telecommute agreement for my employee to work from home?

No, at this time we are not advising individuals to use temporary telecommute agreements. However, if your employee has university equipment at their home, supervisors and managers should track the equipment used.

Can my employee go back into the office to get a computer, personal items, etc.?

Supervisors are encouraged to work with their employees to determine if a single office trip to obtain equipment or expiring personal items can be removed. Returning to the office or campus is not recommended at this time.

Can I still approve overtime for my employees?

Yes. Work with your employee to determine the need to work overtime and provide approval beforehand.

My employee wants to work from home, but I’m running out of things for them to do. What next?

Please work with your employee to see if there are required or optional training or other opportunities to work remotely before having your employee request administrative leave with pay.

Can I ask what my employee’s criteria is for using administrative leave with pay?

Yes, you can inquire which of the three (3) criteria in the executive order is met for the purposes of using administrative leave with pay.

Do I have to approve leave for everyone?

No. Supervisors and managers are tasked with assessing whether certain employees or functions are necessary to continue critical university operations and the number of individuals needed to continue these operations. This may mean that certain individuals are directed to come to work.

I need to reduce services in my unit. How should I reduce services?

Managers and supervisors are encouraged to use maximum flexibility when working with employees to assess individual needs and ensure continuity of critical university functions. Creating voluntary sign-up sheets to work through scheduling issues may help outline where there are gaps for critical services in the coming weeks. Where there are service gaps that cannot be filled through self-selection, rotating shifts can be assigned through reverse seniority.

My employee does not want to come to work, but does not meet one of the three criteria in the executive order. What do I do?

If it is operationally feasible to allow the employee to stay at home, the individual may use their personal accruals to cover their absence.

I think my employee is abusing the administrative leave with pay provided. What do I do?

Please contact your Employee Relations Analyst to discuss these concerns.

I really want my employee to come into the office so they can be productive. What now?

If your employee can work remotely, your employee should not come to campus. Only individuals who are absolutely necessary to continue, critical university operations and cannot work remotely may come to campus. If you have further questions about whether your employee falls into this category, supervisors are encouraged to speak with their managers or unit heads to discuss in more detail.

Are employees in their probationary period eligible for administrative leave, EPSL, and/or EFML?

Yes. As long as the individual employee meets the requirements for the different types of entitlements, the employee can be eligible.

If a probationary employee uses administrative leave or other types of federal entitlements, does that automatically extend their probationary period?

No. An employee’s use of administrative leave, EPSL, or EFML does not automatically extend the probationary period. However, if the employee has not taken on the full scope of their job duties or has not worked during their probationary period, because of COVID–19 issues, you may want to extend the probationary period. Please contact your Employee Relations Analyst to discuss.


Questions for Career Employees

I am a full-time career employee and I am subject to a shelter in place order. I am not eligible for EFML. What are my options?

As a career employee, you are eligible to use 128-hours of administrative leave and 80-hours of EPSL. Once you have exhausted those leave options, you must use up to 40 hours of vacation and/or CTO time. If you do not have 40 hours, you must use the vacation and/or CTO time that you have available. Once you have exhausted up to 40 hours of vacation and/or CTO time, if you cannot work remotely and are unable to return to work for COVID–19 related reasons, you will be placed on administrative leave with pay through June 30, 2020. You are not required to exhaust or use your sick leave to qualify for any additional paid administrative leave with pay.

I am a part-time career employee and I am subject to a shelter in place order. I am not eligible for EFML. What are my options?

Similar to above, you are eligible to use prorated amounts of the 128-hours of administrative leave with pay and prorated amounts of EPSL. Once you have exhausted those leave options, you must use some vacation and/or CTO time. The amount of vacation and/or CTO time you will need to use will depend on your appointment percentage. Once you have exhausted the required amount of vacation and/or CTO accruals, and you cannot work remotely and are unable to return to work for COVID–19 related reasons, you will be placed on administrative leave with pay through June 30, 2020. Your administrative leave with pay will be projected based on your usual biweekly schedule.

Could I be reassigned to different work prior to obtaining additional administrative leave with pay?

As part of the job protection and pay continuation guaranteed to career employees through June 30, 2020, the University requires your supervisor to analyze whether you can work on site or remotely in any capacity. This means that you may be reassigned to complete work within your classification, but which differs from your daily job assignments. If you are reassigned to do additional work on campus, you should report to work.

I do not want to be reassigned to complete additional work on campus. What does this mean?

If employees are eligible to be redeployed to complete additional work within their classification, they must be redeployed in order to be eligible for pay continuation through June 30, 2020. If an employee refuses to be reassigned, the employee will not be eligible to receive pay continuation through June 30, 2020 if all remaining leaves and entitlements are used.

I am an essential employee subject to a shelter in place order and am afraid to come to work. What are my options?

As an essential employee, you may be required to come back to work to perform critical functions necessary for continued University operations. While being subject to a shelter in place meets the qualifications for EPSL, that does not guarantee your ability to use EPSL, which is determined by the University’s operational need. Each individual’s case should be reviewed with their supervisor.

I am a partial-year career employee and am usually furloughed in mid-June. Am I eligible to remain on full pay status through June 30, 2020?

No. Individuals who are in partial-year career appointments may be furloughed as part of the ordinary course of University business.

I am a probationary employee who has not reached career status. Is my job protected through June 30, 2020?

Probationary employees may be released for performance-related reasons prior to June 30, 2020; however, managers and supervisors should not release probationary employees prior to June 30, 2020 to save money due to COVID–19.

I am a full-time career employee who is over 60 years old and/or who is immunocompromised. There is work available for me to do through my current job or a reassignment, but I am fearful about coming to work. What are my options?

You can exhaust the 128-hours of administrative leave with pay and, if you are subject to a shelter in place order, the additional 80 hours of EPSL. After that time, absent medical certification which precludes you from performing any work for the University, if there is work for you to do, you need to complete the work, whether remote or on site. The University has an obligation to ensure that its employees’ working conditions are safe and to ensure that appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) is provided, if needed, based on the duties the employee has been assigned to perform. Employees who provide medical documentation precluding them from performing their assigned job duties may contact their Leave of Absence Coordinator, and/or engage in an Interactive Process with the Disability Management Office.

I work at the student health center and am a partial-year career employee. I only have limited options to work between now and June 30th. What are my options?

As a health care worker, you are eligible for up to 128-hours of administrative leave with pay provided by UC’s executive order. You are also eligible for EPSL, but only for one of these reasons: you are subject to quarantine or an isolation order (like shelter in place); you have been told by health care provider to self-quarantine; you are experiencing COVID–19 symptoms and seeking diagnosis; or you are caring for individual subject to quarantine/isolation order or who was told by health care provider to self-quarantine. You are not eligible for EPSL for child care and are not otherwise eligible for EFML. If you exhaust your 128-hours of administrative leave with pay and your 80 hours of EPSL for an appropriate, qualifying reason, you must exhaust up to 40 hours of vacation and/or CTO. After exhausting your accruals, if you are unable to work and are not able to be redeployed on site or work remotely, then you will be placed on administrative leave with pay through the date you are normally furloughed as a partial-year career employee.

I am a career employee who is funded on grants or extramural funding. Am I eligible for pay continuation?

Consistent with the guidance issued by Vice Chancellor Scott Brandt and interim Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Lori Kletzer’s email to research staff on April 10, 2020, grant funded researchers and career support staff will continue to be paid from their grants at least through June 30th. All UCSC career, research support staff - core-funded, grant-funded, and recharge-funded - shall continue to be paid on their existing funding sources (whether they take their allotted administrative leave or not) and shall not be laid off before June 30, 2020

I heard there was going to be a redeployment program on campus. Can I have more information?

Currently, the campus does not have a formal redeployment program in light of the additional leaves and entitlements provided to employees. However, individuals can be reassigned to work within their classification. As a supervisor, if you are interested in exploring learning and development opportunities for your staff before June 30, 2020, please contact the Learning and Development team for more information on options.

As a career employee, I’d like to donate some of my EPSL or EFML to other employees who need additional time off. Can I do that through the Catastrophic Leave Program?

No. The catastrophic leave program is a very specific program designed to assist employees in very specific circumstances. At this time, the campus is not expanding the catastrophic leave program to include distribution or donation of unused federal entitlements (EPSL, EFML) or administrative leave.

If I am furloughed or fully laid off after June 30, 2020, will I be able to use any of my leave (administrative leave with pay, EPSL, or EFML)?

No. Employees who are furloughed or laid off do not meet the requirements to use either administrative leave with pay, EPSL, or EFML, which otherwise require that there is work for an employee to do prior to taking leave.

Will there be retirement incentives for career staff to retire this year?

At this time, we do not know whether the University of California will provide any retirement incentives for this calendar year.


Questions for Non-Career Employees (contract, by agreement, limited open recruitment and non-recruitment positions)

I have a multi-year contract set to expire in June 2023. Is my job protected through June 30, 2020?

No, Only career employees have job protection through June 30, 2020.

I have been hired in a contract position and I have exhausted my 128 hours of UC expanded paid administrative leave and 40 hours of accrued leave. There is no additional work for me and I cannot work remotely. Can I be released from my contract prior to June 30, 2020?

Yes. If there is no work for you and you cannot work from home, contract employees may be released following the termination procedures in their contract before June 30, 2020, use their own vacation accruals or ask to be placed on leave without pay.


Questions for Student Employees

Am I guaranteed the ability to use the UC Paid Administrative Leave, Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) or Expanded Family Medical Leave (EFML)?

No. Although you may be eligible for UC Paid Administrative Leave or the federal leave entitlements (EPSL and EFML), your appointment may also be ended by your supervisor at their sole discretion. If your supervisor allows your appointment to continue through part or all of the spring quarter, you may use your leave entitlements if you are 1) scheduled to work and can not work remotely, 2) meet the eligibility criteria for such paid leaves and 3) have continuation of employment with your department.

I am a recently hired student, with no hours worked in the lookback period for the 128 hours of UC expanded paid administrative leave. How will the University calculate the number of UC expanded paid administrative leave hours I am eligible for?

The University would use the student’s appointment percentage to determine the number of prorated UC expanded paid administrative leave hours the employee is allotted.

I am a non-academic student employee. Am I eligible for Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)?

Yes, you are eligible for EPSL.

How many hours of EPSL am I eligible for?

The number of hours you are eligible for will be determined using a six month lookback period to determine your average hours over a typical biweekly pay period. The number of hours you have available is visible at the bottom of your time record in the Time-Off Balances tab.

How is EPSL applied if I do not know my schedule?

Once the number of EPSL hours are determined, it can be applied based on your normal work schedule to supplement the hours you would have worked or were scheduled to work.

If I am released from my student position, am I eligible to apply for Unemployment Insurance Benefits?

Yes.  Please visit the Employment Development Department site for comprehensive information on how to file a claim.


Questions About Time and Attendance

General

The guidelines specify that the “The 128 hours may be used consecutively in one block or incrementally.” So I am wondering about the “consecutively in one block” guideline. We know our variable employees have prorated hours, but how would they take it all in one block if they choose that option? Do they enter 8.00 on each day, and if so, do that for each day (and whatever partial hours) up to their particular total.

The guidelines are meant to inform employees that if they need to use an hour or two a day based on the number of hours they can work and what they are supplementing, then that is allowed.

  1. Example: An employee is a 100% hourly paid employee, they can work remotely but only for 4 hours a day due to daycare issues (or one of the other criteria outlined in the executive order). They can report 4 hours of work per day and 4 hours of COVID–19 UC expanded paid administrative leave.
  2. Example: An employee is 75% time and works 6 hours per day. They cannot work due to daycare issues for two weeks. They are eligible for 96 hours of COVID–19 UC expanded paid administrative leave. They use 80 in the first two weeks and have 16 hours remaining to use at a later date.

Employees

If I meet the criteria for UC expanded paid administrative leave, how do I report this in CruzPay?

CruzPay has been updated to include a paycode called COVID-ADMIN, which should be used to report UC expanded paid administrative leave.

If I meet the criteria for Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL), how do I report this in CruzPay?

CruzPay has been updated to include paycodes called COVID-EPSL-SELF and COVID-EPSL-FAMILY, which should be used to report time for EPSL leave entitlements. COVID-EPSL-SELF should be used for eligibility reasons 1-3. COVID-EPSL-FAMILY should be used for eligibility reasons 4 or 6.

Do employees need to contact their supervisor to obtain approval for paid admin leave?

Employees should notify their supervisor if they have a request for UC expanded paid administrative leave for one of the three categories outlined above. Supervisors will need to approve the paid administrative leave after evaluating essential operational functions. Employees should follow regular and established call out procedures (if your unit has them) to notify individual supervisors about the UC expanded paid administrative leave request and state the criteria met for the administrative leave.

Managers/Supervisors

If my student employee was not expecting to work beyond Winter Quarter, can they continue to claim the UC expanded paid administrative leave into Spring Quarter, until their bank runs out?

If an employee has already (previous to the COVID 19 situation) communicated to you that they would not be working effectively on a certain date, please work with your timekeeper to end the student appointment. Individuals who are not working because they ended or will end their spring appointment should not claim UC expanded paid administrative leave on any time records in CruzPay.

What happens if an employee has already claimed more than they qualify for in UC expanded paid administrative leave?

We would ask that the employee does not claim any further hours but we do not know yet if we will have to reclaim the hours as an overpayment or they may have additional leave eligibility through EPSL.

Can I see my employees leave bank totals?

CruzPay has been programmed to include the UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave hours and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) hours that employees are eligible to use.  The number of hours employees have available for UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave can be seen at the bottom of the employee's time record in the Exceptions tab.  The number of hours employees have available for EPSL is visible at the bottom of the employee's time record in the Time-Off Balances tab.

How do exempt employees record their time if they are unable to work a full day?

Exempt employees continue to record their time in full day absences only. If an exempt employee is able to work for a portion of the day, they do not need to record UC expanded paid administrative leave with pay or EPSL.

If I am an employee with a fixed percent of time, and I have a temporary change in my percent time, how is my UC expanded paid administrative leave allotment and EPSL calculated?

Your hours would be calculated based upon your fixed percent at the time you begin using your UC expanded paid administrative leave and EPSL. If your temporary percent of time changes during the period in which you are using your paid leave entitlements, your hours may be adjusted.

If my employee submits a time record with COVID-Admin Leave selected, what do I need to review?

You need to ensure that your employee has met one of the three criteria outlined in the executive order.

Make sure the hours reported as UC expanded paid administrative leave are a reflection of the employee’s work schedule.

If the employee (staff or student) is less than full time, holds a variable, per diem or By Agreement (BYA) position, you must use the calculation method outlined above to determine the average hours the employee is eligible to report as UC expanded paid administrative leave.

Can I ask what my employee’s criteria is for using UC expanded paid administrative leave or EPSL?

Yes, you can inquire which of the three criteria in the executive order is met for the purposes of using UC expanded paid administrative leave.

Do I have to approve leave for everyone?

No. Supervisors and managers are tasked with assessing whether certain employees or functions are necessary to continue critical university operations and the amount of individuals needed to continue these operations. This may mean that certain individuals are directed to come to work.

How will I track how many UC expanded paid administrative leave or EPSL hours I have used?

Your administrative leave with pay hours can be tracked in CruzPay using the COVID-Admin paycode.  Your EPSL hours can be tracked by using the COVID-EPSL-Self and COVID-EPS-Family paycodes in CruzPay.  The number of UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave hours employees are eligible to use and still have available can be seen at the bottom of the employee's time record in the Exceptions tab.  The number of EPSL hours employees are eligible to use and still have available is visible at the bottom of the employee's time record in the Time-Off Balances tab.

Some of my employees have compensatory time off (CTO). Can I encourage staff to use their CTO in addition to the other types of leaves provided for by the University?

Supervisors and managers can encourage employees to use their CTO time between now and June 30, 2020 beyond the leave entitlements provided by the University as long as CTO use does not interfere with continued University operations.


General Questions

Who pays for the UC expanded paid administrative leave, emergency paid sick leave, and emergency family medical leave provided to employees?

There are no additional funds being provided to the campus to pay for these leaves. Therefore, the campus is responsible to cover all costs related to these leaves.

If I have been released from my job because I hold a casual/restricted student, limited, contract, per diem or by agreement appointment or my hours have been reduced, and I have exhausted all of the paid leave entitlements available to me, am I eligible to apply for Unemployment Insurance Benefits?

Yes. Please visit the Employment Development Department site for comprehensive information on how to file a claim.

I have more questions, who do I contact?

If you have employee-specific questions, please contact your Employee Relations Analyst. If you have general questions, please email your question to covid–19-questions-group@ucsc.edu.