Parental Policies

Officers of Research


These policies are also for postdoctoral research scientists and scholars, and postdoctoral clinical fellows who are salaried with a full time “assistant in clinical” appointment.

These policies recognize the special needs of researchers who must balance professional and parental obligations, and reflect the belief that the University, as well as the individual, benefits from arrangements that help researchers pursue their academic careers while raising a family.  Please note that the content on this website provides a brief summary of the policies. For complete information please consult the Faculty Handbook

Pregnancy-Related Disability Leave

As a full-time officer of research who is pregnant, you are entitled to take a paid medical leave for any part of the pregnancy and post-partum period that your doctor certifies you are medically unable to work.  Medical leave for pregnancy begins on the date your doctor certifies that you are unable to work for medical reasons and ends on the date your doctor certifies you are medically able to return to work. Typically physicians certify medical leave of six to eight weeks.  In the event of complications and extended medical leave is necessary, medical certification may allow up to six months of paid medical leave.

The first 12 weeks of any pregnancy-related disability or parental leave in a rolling year are counted toward the 12 weeks of leave you may be entitled to under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Child Care Leave

You may be eligible to take a child care leave without salary or with partial salary under the following conditions:

  • You have a baby
  • Your spouse or same-sex domestic partner has a baby
  • You adopt a child
  • You become a foster parent to a child

This policy applies to biological parents, and to individuals (including same-sex domestic partners) who legally adopt a child, or who have a child placed in foster care with them. If the officer does not perform any responsibilities during the leave, it is without salary. With the appropriate approvals, the officer may alternatively continue to perform a portion of her/his normal responsibilities on a leave with partial salary.

The total period of medical and child care leave normally may not exceed 12 months.

New York City Earned Sick Time Act

Under the New York City Earned Sick Time Act Policy all eligible (must work more than 80 hours in a fiscal year: July 1 – June 30) University faculty and staff who work in New York City may accrue up to a maximum of 40 hours of paid sick time per fiscal year, which can be used for illness or preventive care of one's self or one's family members (defined under the Act to mean the employee's child, spouse, domestic partner, parent, sibling (including a half sibling, step sibling, or sibling related through adoption), grandchild, grandparent, or the child or parent of an employee's spouse or domestic partner).

Helpful Suggestions

Preparing for a Leave of Absence

    For pregnancy-related disability leave, you and your doctor must complete the New York State Disability Form.  If the length of time you need to be on leave changes for medical reasons, you will need to submit new documentation from your doctor so that your medical leave can be changed accordingly.  The disability form may be attached to your letter to your supervisor, or to maintain confidentiality may be sent directly to "HR Disability" in the Office of Human Resources.  Leave sufficient time between your written request(s) and the date you would like to begin your leave so that your department and/or school can plan for your absence and receive authorization from the Provost.

    Provide written notice of your intention to take child care leave to your chair, dean, or director.  Make sure to include an anticipated return date in your written notice of leave. Leave sufficient time between your written request(s) and the date you would like to begin your leave so that your department and/or school can plan for your absence and receive authorization from the Provost. 

    Things to Think About

  • Paid medical leave and infant care leave generally does not exceed one year; however in certain circumstances additional time may be necessary. 
  • If eligible, FMLA will run concurrently with paid medical leave and infant care leave.
  • Child care leave is applicable to both mothers and fathers.
  • Contact HR Benefits to discuss how you can retain your benefits while on leave.