602: Paid Leave for Staff

Policy 602: Effective July 1, 2022, Policy 602 has been sunset and replaced by the NEW HR Policy #602.


Georgetown University grants to eligible staff employees paid leave for rest and recreation; personal reasons; health maintenance; illness, injury or disability; family and medical leave; sick and safe leave; religious observances; emergencies or other events covered by law. 


The University recognizes the importance and value of paid leave so that employees may have paid time away from work for a variety of reasons. Georgetown complies with all applicable local and federal law regarding paid time off.  


Paid leave is available to all staff employees as set forth below.

Accrual and Accrual Rate 
All eligible staff employees accrue paid leave according to the designated leave schedule based on position, length of service and number of hours worked.

Paid leave is accrued on a biweekly basis for biweekly paid staff employees and monthly for monthly paid staff employees.

Paid Leave Accrual Schedule 

Category of Leave Days Earned First Year Days Earned After First Year
Senior Level Executives and Senior Level Professionals who are full-time employees 21 Days 22 days plus one additional day for each year of service thereafter, up to a maximum of 26 days
Full-time staff employees who are Non-Senior Level Executives or Non-Senior Level Professionals 16 days 17 days plus one additional day for each year of service thereafter, up to a maximum of 26 days
Part-time staff who work at least 16 hours per week Based on prorated portion of one of the above Based on a prorated portion of one of the above
All other staff employees not covered by one of the schedules above Based on an accrual schedule of 1 hour of paid leave for every 30 hours of actual work No Change

Use of Leave

Scheduled Leave 
Scheduled leave is any paid leave that is requested and approved in advance.  Supervisors must schedule paid leave according to the operating requirements of the department, with attention to length of service and other relevant factors and when possible, to accommodate the employee’s request.

Leave for Religious Observances 
Staff employees may request paid leave for religious observances that are not part of the holiday schedule.  Staff employees should provide supervisors with adequate notice of such a request.  In compliance with District of Columbia law, employees may use paid leave for a nonscheduled religious holiday; or the employee may be permitted to work outside of his/her regularly scheduled hours to make up for the time off.  Employees may be denied leave only when the absence from work would create an undue hardship in the workplace.

Unscheduled Leave 
Unscheduled leave is any paid leave that is not approved in advance and is normally for a short period of time.  For example, unexpected illness or a personal emergency would require use of unscheduled paid leave.  To qualify for unscheduled paid leave, an employee must follow the department’s established call-in procedure. 

If an employee fails to follow the department’s established procedure, the absence is treated as unauthorized and unpaid leave.

Department heads and supervisors will monitor unscheduled leave use to identify possible abuse of leave.  Abusive use of unscheduled leave, whether paid or unpaid, may result in disciplinary action.

Sick and Safe Leave
In compliance with the D.C. Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act of 2008 (“Sick and Safe Act”) and amendments thereto, staff employees may use unscheduled paid leave for absences due to the employee’s, or a family member’s, illness or to seek legal protection from domestic violence or sexual abuse, as required by law.  Managers may not deny requests for leave when the leave is being used consistent with the Sick and Safe Act.  Unscheduled leave will be paid if the need for leave is unforeseeable and the employee has given verbal notice at the start of the work shift for which paid leave is requested or, if the employee has an emergency, within twenty four hours of the onset of the emergency. Departmental call in procedures must allow for notification of this type.   Questions regarding the scope of the law should be directed to Human Resources.

Monitoring Leave
In order to meet the business needs of the department, department heads may establish more specific regulations related to paid leave usage, as long as the regulations comply with applicable law. 

Staff employees may be required to present documentation for certain absences.  For example, if the employee uses more than three consecutive days of leave related to medical reasons, the supervisor may require the employee to present a physician’s certificate.  Similarly, if a supervisor identifies a pattern of leave use related to medical reasons, a physician’s certificate may be required for absences of less than three days.  When a physician’s certificate is required and the employee fails to provide the certificate, the employee will not be paid for leave.  Appropriate documentation for absences due to other reasons may also be required.

Paid Leave Calculation 
Paid leave is calculated according to the employee’s base rate and is exclusive of shift differential and overtime premiums.

Maximum Leave Accrual 
The maximum accrual level of paid leave is 288 hours for employees who are regularly scheduled to work at least 16 hours per week.  The maximum accrual level of paid leave is 112 hours for non-regularly scheduled employees.  If an employee reaches the maximum accrual, leave accrual ceases until the employee uses paid leave hours and the accrual drops below the maximum limit.


  1. Paid leave will not accrue during any full pay period for which an employee is not paid.
  2. Paid leave will not accrue when an employee is receiving University Short-Term or Long-Term Disability benefits.
  3. To allow for proper orientation, a department may restrict an employee’s use of paid leave during the first ninety days of employment. However, a department may not restrict an employee’s use of paid leave when it is requested for a reason that is covered under the Sick and Safe Act, provided proper notice is given. Departments may not restrict an employee’s use of paid leave following the transfer to another department.  
  4. An employee can not be restricted in his/her election to substitute paid leave for unpaid Family and Medical Leave under Human Resources Policy 603, if applicable.

Payment of Leave

With Regular Earnings 
Paid leave is paid with the employee’s regular earnings.  The University will not pay leave in advance.

At Termination 
Prior to June 30, 2015, upon termination of employment, accrued but unused paid leave will be paid to an employee in a lump sum.

Effective June 30, 2015, upon termination of employment, leave that has been accrued under this policy and that remains unused will be paid in a lump sum up to a maximum payment of $15,000; however, employees whose base salary is $200,000 or more annually are not eligible to receive any payment for unused accrued leave.

At Transfer
Non-regularly scheduled employees who transfer to an employment category in which they are regularly scheduled will carry over their leave. Regularly scheduled employees who transfer to non-regularly scheduled, will carry over up to 56 hours of accrued paid leave.  The employee will be paid in a lump sum for accrued unused paid leave in excess of 56 hours.   


Employees are responsible for following established department scheduling and call-in procedures.

Department heads are responsible for ensuring proper administration of paid leave and leave scheduling.


Contact the Department of Human Resources or the Payroll department if you have questions or if you would like more information about this policy.