Domestic Violence Leave

  1. What is a Domestic Violence Leave?
  2. Who is eligible?
  3. What information is required to apply for a Domestic Violence Leave?
  4. Is a Domestic Violence Leave paid?
  5. Is there a requirement to use available sick leave, vacation leave and floating holiday?
  6. What is the procedure?
  7. What happens when a Domestic Violence Leave ends?

I.      Policy
The University of Puget Sound (the “university”) is committed to the safety and security of all staff members and provides reasonable leave to a staff member who is a victim of, or who has family members who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking (“Domestic Violence Leave”).

The following are commonly asked questions regarding Domestic Violence Leave. Please click on the question to be directed to the relevant policy section.

 

II.    Eligibility and Scope
A regular staff member who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, or who has a family member who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking may take reasonable leave from work, intermittent leave, or leave on a reduced work schedule for Domestic Violence Leave to:

  • Seek legal or law enforcement assistance to ensure his or her personal safety or the safety of family members;
  • Seek treatment by a healthcare provider for physical or mental injury caused by domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, or to attend to the healthcare treatment of a family member who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking;
  • Obtain or assist a family member to obtain services from a domestic violence shelter, rape crisis center, or other social services program;
  • Obtain or assist a family member to obtain mental health counseling when a staff member or family member is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking; or
  • Participate in safety planning to temporarily or permanently relocate, or take other safety related action to provide for a staff member’s or family member’s safety from future incidents of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.  
  • To testify in a trial or hearing of domestic violence involving an immediate family member.

A “family member” includes a child, spouse, domestic partner, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent, a person a staff member is dating, or the child, parent, or grandparent of a staff member’s spouse or domestic partner.

Domestic Violence Leave is without pay. However, a staff member may elect to use available sick leave, vacation leave and floating holiday or a combination of unpaid leave and available sick leave, vacation leave and floating holiday for the duration of the Domestic Violence Leave.

Health insurance benefits will be maintained during Domestic Violence Leave at the level and under the conditions coverage would have been provided if a staff member had not taken the leave.

 

III.   Notification of the Need to Take Leave
A staff member should give the university advance notice of his or her intention to take Domestic Violence Leave when possible. However, when a staff member cannot provide advance notice because of an emergency or unforeseen circumstances related to domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, he or she should give notice to his or her supervisor or Human Resources no later than the end of the first day or as soon as reasonably possible under the circumstances that a staff member takes leave. A staff member who requests Domestic Violence Leave will be required to verify that he or she or a staff member’s family member is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking. Verification must be provided in a timely manner and can be through one or more of the following:

  • A police report,
  • A court protection order,
  • The victim’s advocate (e.g., an attorney, member of the clergy or healthcare provider), or
  • A written statement from a staff member stating that a staff member or a family member is a victim or domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.  

 

IV.  Confidentiality
The university will treat the information a staff member provides as confidential to the extent possible. This information will only be disclosed if a staff member requests or consents to disclosure, or if required by a court or administrative agency order, or if required by local, state or federal law.

 

V.    Return to Work
Upon returning from Domestic Violence Leave, a staff member will return to the position held at the time of the leave or to an equivalent position of at least the same pay. However, a staff member has no greater right to reinstatement or to other benefits and conditions of employment than if he or she had been continuously employed during the term of the leave.

 

Origination date: 12/2012