Leave of Absence

 

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Stop here if your need for a leave of absence is related to a work related accident or illness, please contact your supervisor as soon as possible to report a workers’ compensation incident.  Work related illness or injury must be reported to your supervisor immediately to complete an Injury/incident report.  

The City understands there may be times when you need to be away from work due to an illness or health related condition or to care for a family member.  There are several types of leaves available for City employees.  The type of leave you are eligible for is dependent on several items such as, if the leave is for yourself or an eligible dependent, and if you have exhausted other leave types.  Below are the types of leaves administered by The Hartford. 

Available leave types:

City Leave of Absence
Short Term Disability
Family Medical Leave
Long Term Disability
Military Leave
Bereavement

If you are expecting to be off work three days or less, you may use sick leave for your own health condition or to care for a dependent.  Refer to the City’s Sick Leave policy for more information. 

To request a leave of absence in 2017, call UNUM at 866.779.1054.

 New! For 2018, the City's leave of absence provider is The Hartford. To set up a leave of absence with The Hartford, complete the steps below.

Step 1:  Request your leave with The Hartford

You have three options to initiate your leave claim:

Option 1:   Call 888.458.5541.  The call intake process may take 10-20 minutes to complete.  You will need your attending health provider’s information, such as address, phone and fax numbers.  After completion of the call, the required forms are mailed to your home address.

Option 2:  Submit your claim online at www.thehartfordatwork.com.  If you have not previously registered with The Hartford’s website, you will need to register your account first.  Under “New Users – Create an Account”, select “Register for Site Access”.  Once registered, you can submit and check the status of your claim, view your communications with The Hartford, and report your absences 24/7.

Option 3:  Download the My Benefits mobile app for iOS and Android devices.  With the app you can submit and check the status of your claim, view your communication with The Hartford, and report your absences 24/7.  For more information, click here.

*Note: If your leave of absence is for your own health condition, you may be eligible for disability benefits.  The Hartford will help you determine if your leave is eligible for benefits.  For more information on disability benefits, click here.

Step 2:  Submit all required forms to The Hartford

You have 15 calendar days from the date you initiate your claim to submit paperwork to The Hartford.  If you provided The Hartford with your attending health provider’s information, The Hartford will fax the required paperwork to your provider.  You may need to follow up with your provider to ensure the forms are completed and sent to The Hartford before the 15 day deadline.

Step 3:  Leave approval or denial

Once The Hartford receives your paperwork, your claim will be processed.  You will receive a letter in the mail indicating the approval or denial of your claim.  Remember you can check the status of your claim 24/7 using the My Benefits mobile app or visiting www.thehartfordatwork.com.

Your Responsibilities While on Leave

Communication: While on leave, you must keep The Hartford and your supervisor informed of any changes to your leave, such as needing additional time off work.  In addition, The Hartford may send a communication by mail; please take note when receiving letters from The Hartford.

Required Forms: It is your responsibility to follow up with your health provider in getting forms completed for your leave of absence or return to work.  If there are extenuating circumstances, please contact The Hartford for assistance.

City Pay: Continue to monitor your City paycheck to ensure accuracy and accrued leave balances.

Pay

While on leave, you are eligible to use accrued time, such as sick leave or vacation, to continue receiving a paycheck.  If you are enrolled for benefits, you must use enough accrued time to cover you payroll deductions (use the Paycheck Simulator tool in ESS).  If you exhaust all accrued leave time before returning to work, you may be eligible to receive donations.  For more information regarding donations, refer to the City’s Donation of Leave policy. When you are no longer receiving a pay check you are changed to Benefits only status.

Time keeping

While on leave, your supervisor will enter your time in the time keeping system.  Communicating with your supervisor is important during a leave of absence.  Your health condition is private and you need only communicate to your supervisor the need for a leave of absence, the duration and a projected return to work date.  Contact The Hartford who will approve or deny your leave of absence period and send non-health related notifications to your supervisor regarding updates to your leave, such as initiated, approved, or return to work date.

Leave Accruals & Holiday Pay

As long as you continue to receive a paycheck from the City, you will continue to accrue vacation and leave and are eligible for Holiday pay.  However, if you are on an approved FMLA during a holiday, the holiday counts as FMLA time.

Returning to Work

If your leave of absence is for your own health condition, you may be required to provide a return to work note prior to your return.    In addition, some positions are required to pass a physical agility test prior to returning to work.  The return to work requirements will be outlined in the communications you receive from The Hartford.