Supported Maternity Leave
Supported maternity leave is a leave from work of up to twenty (20) weeks with top-up as specified below. Queen's University's Supported Maternity Leave policy applies to the following female employees:
- Academic, adjunct academic, support staff and contract staff (including Post Doctoral Fellows) who have been employed continuously for one year or more by Queen's University and who hold a current appointment/contract of a year's duration or longer.
- Support staff and contract staff (including Post Doctoral Fellows) who have held five or more successive term appointments/contracts of less than one year's duration.
Eligible employees will receive the top-up as specified below with the understanding that the employee is expected to return to work for the University for a period of at least six (6) months following the date of her return from maternity leave.
Should an employee take an additional leave from the University following her maternity leave, such as a Parental Leave (supported or unsupported) or a Leave of Absence Without Pay, the same expectation will apply upon her return to work from that leave.
Should an employee quit and therefore not satisfy this condition, she shall be indebted to the University for the sum of the monies paid to her during her supported maternity leave and will be required to repay these monies to the University.
Employees who qualify for maternity leave under the provisions of this policy are eligible for the maternity leave top-up as follows:
- Weeks 1 & 2:
A payment equivalent to 100 % of the employee's normal basic earnings for the first two (2) weeks of the maternity leave
- Weeks 3 to 17:
For the next fifteen (15) weeks of the maternity leave, the employee will receive from the University a payment equivalent to the difference between 100% of the employee's normal basic earnings and the amount of Employment Insurance maternity benefit the employee receives
- Weeks 18 to 20:
A payment equivalent to 100% of the employee's normal basic earnings for the remaining three (3) weeks of the maternity leave
During the maternity leave the University will continue the employee on full purchased benefits if the employee so chooses. The employee is required to pay her share of the costs of the benefit plans in which she is enrolled during the full term of the leave. Direct debit authorization will be required from the employee to cover the cost of the employee's portion of the benefit premium. The employee is informed of these costs during a meeting with her Compensation Assistant within Human Resources. Although she does not have to decide which benefits to maintain at this meeting, the employee should make this decision as soon as possible.
- Supported maternity leave may be initiated by the employee at any time within 8 weeks of the expected delivery date.
- Both service credit and vacation entitlement continue to accrue while the employee is on maternity leave. Upon return to work the employee will be entitled to the same amount of vacation days as if she had worked. With the permission of the department head, this time may be added on to the end of the maternity leave. Service and vacation entitlement however, will be prorated by the amount of additional time an employee may be granted under the Leave of Absence Without Pay policy outside of any entitlement under maternity and parental leaves.
- Unusual pregnancy or birth situations may occur where the normal application of this policy may be inappropriate. Such special cases should be reviewed with a member of the Employee Relations Unit within Human Resources.
- Upon return to work the employee is to return to her previous position and salary. If that position no longer exists, the employee will be placed in a comparable position in the same salary grade without loss of salary.
- An employee who wishes to change the date of her return to work must give the department head or his/her designate at least four (4) weeks notice before the date she wishes to end the leave.
Note: An employee who does not meet the eligibility requirements for supported maternity leave may still meet the criteria for Unsupported Maternity Leave.
All payments made under this policy must be in accordance with Service Canada Regulations.
As part of the requirements under the Employment Insurance Regulations, all payments by the University listed in the Supported Maternity Leave and Supported Parental Leave policies shall only commence when the employee provides proof that he/she is receiving E.I. benefits. Employees should understand that such proof will not be made available by E.I. until after the leave has commenced and hence University payments shall be retroactive. Payments in respect of guaranteed annual remuneration or in respect of deferred remuneration or severance pay will not be reduced or increased by payments under this plan.
To avoid delays in qualifying for E.I. benefits, the employee should obtain her Record of Employment from her Compensation Assistant in Human Resources on her last working day before the leave and should present it as soon as possible at the Service Canada Office.
An employee shall provide her department head or his/her designate, with as much advance notice as possible of the anticipated date of delivery and discuss her future plans with respect to her employment at, and commitment to the University.
At least one month in advance of delivery, the employee should make written application to the department head, or his/her designate, for maternity leave. Written notice should include the following information:
- The date the leave is to commence.
- The expected date of return to work.
The employee should then contact her Compensation Assistant in Human Resources to arrange an appointment to discuss payment procedures during the maternity leave.
Departmental Administrative Procedures
Provided that the discussion with the department head or his/her designate has taken place as outlined in the Employee Procedures, the Department shall obtain a Leave Request form. Upon completion, the form should be remitted to the employee's Compensation Assistant within Human Resources one month prior to the expected date of delivery. Once the documentation is received regarding maternity leave, a copy of the completed Request for Family Leave or Leave of Absence form should be sent to the employee for her records along with a memo outlining the necessary measures required to make the administration of the leave as smooth as possible.
Upon an employee's return from leave, the Department will send a memorandum to the employee's Compensation Assistant within Human Resources confirming the date of the employee's return to work.
Questions? Contact the Employee Relations Unit within Human Resources.