Human Resources

Maternity Leave Frequent Questions

Overview:

Where can I find information about maternity leave of absences?

What does “FMLA” mean?

Who do I talk to about Maternity Leave of Absences?
 

Before Maternity Leave:

Am I eligible for Maternity Leave under the FMLA?

How long is a maternity leave of absence under the FMLA?

What if I’m not eligible for Maternity Leave under the FMLA?

What forms need to be filled out to request a Maternity Leave?

When do the Maternity Leave forms need to be submitted to Human Resources?

When do I tell my supervisor about taking Maternity Leave?

Am I eligible to use salary continuation, short-term disability, and/or sick time for part of my maternity leave?

As the mother, what is the typical time period of salary continuation, short-term disability, and/or sick benefits (if eligible)?

As the father, can I use salary continuation or sick benefits for a maternity leave of absence (if eligible)?

Can I use vacation time after my salary continuation/sick benefits end?

What if my baby is born before the projected delivery date?

What if I’m absent from work because of illness during my pregnancy?

As a Faculty member, where can I find information about making arrangements for a maternity leave of absence?

What if I am on a fixed contract that is due to end?
 

Benefits:

Are my benefits (including medical, dental, vision) affected while on a maternity leave?

How do I enroll my baby in my insurances?

What other benefit related things should I consider?

My doctor’s office charges me to complete the Maternity Leave Paperwork. Can I use my Health Savings Account (HSA) for this?
 

Returning to Work:

What do I need to provide before returning to work?

Can I come back to work part-time?

What if I decide not to return to work at the end of the maternity leave period?
 

Other Resources:

Are there any resources available to help me prepare for parenthood?

How do I find childcare for when I return to work?

What about breastfeeding when I return to work?

As a faculty member, can I pause the tenured track while on maternity leave?

 

Overview:

Where can I find information about maternity leave of absences?

What does “FMLA” mean?

 Who do I talk to about Maternity Leave of Absences?

  • Beth Evans, Human Resources Representative, at (616) 331-2215.

Before Maternity Leave:

Am I eligible for Maternity Leave under the FMLA?

  • To be eligible, Faculty/Staff members must have worked at GVSU for at least 12 months and have worked at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months before the leave. 

How long is a maternity leave of absence under the FMLA?

  • An FMLA eligible Faculty/Staff member can take up to 12 weeks off for maternity leave.

What if I’m not eligible for Maternity Leave under the FMLA?

  • The mother may be eligible to take University Maternity Leave to cover for the time period that they are medically unable to work following the birth of their child. Please refer to your appropriate handbook or contract for eligibility information.

What forms need to be filled out to request a Maternity Leave?

When do the Maternity Leave forms need to be submitted to Human Resources?

  • The forms should be submitted at least 30 days in advance of the leave start date.

When do I tell my supervisor about taking Maternity Leave?

  • It’s best to give your supervisor notice as soon as possible.  There are various benefits to telling your supervisor sooner rather than later. The more planning and preparation you and your supervisor do before you leave the easier both of you will find it when you return.  An earlier announcement will enable all those involved to support you and the operational requirements of your department.

Am I eligible to use salary continuation, short-term disability, and/or sick time for part of my maternity leave?

  • Eligibility of benefits is based on your staff group. Please refer to your appropriate handbook or contract for information.

As the mother, what is the typical time period of salary continuation, short-term disability, and/or sick benefits (if eligible)?

  • The physician’s medical documentation determines the medical recovery time. A typical recovery time for an uncomplicated vaginal delivery is six weeks and for caesarean delivery is eight weeks.

As the father, can I use salary continuation or sick benefits for a maternity leave of absence (if eligible)?

  • Salary continuation/sick benefits are appropriate for the day of delivery and the day bringing the baby home from the hospital.

Can I use vacation time after my salary continuation/sick benefits end?

  • If eligible for vacation benefits, you can use vacation time to supplement your time off on a maternity leave of absence.

What if my baby is born before the projected delivery date?

  • The maternity leave start date can be adjusted to reflect the actual date your maternity leave starts.  If the start date should change, a notification will need to be provided to your supervisor and Human Resources as soon as possible.

What if I’m absent from work because of illness during my pregnancy?

  • Normal salary continuation, sick time, and/or medical leave provisions will apply.

As a Faculty member, where can I find information about making arrangements for a maternity leave of absence?

What if I am on a fixed contract that is due to end?

  • Please contact Beth Evans in Human Resources at 331-2215 to discuss further.

Benefits:

Are my benefits (including medical, dental, vision) affected while on a maternity leave?

  • While on an approved maternity leave, benefits will continue as if you were working.

  • During a paid portion, employee contributions continue to be deducted out of paychecks.

  • During an unpaid portion, you will receive information from [Tara Bivens] Infinisource notifying you of the cost you are responsible for (payment coupons included) and where to send the payments.

How do I enroll my baby in my insurances?

  • Email the Health and Wellness Office at healthandwellness@gvsu.edu with the following information within 30 days of the child’s birth:
    • Your G Number:
    • Name of child:
    • DOB:
    • Sex of child:
    • Social security number:
    • Will the child have any other coverage?
    • Which insurance you would like the child added to (medical, dental, etc.):
    • Primary care physician if you have Priority Health HMO plan

What other benefit related things should I consider?

  • A list of things to consider following a birth of a child, such as increasing your HSA contributions, can be found on the Health and Wellness website under Life Event Changes.

My doctor’s office charges me to complete the Maternity Leave Paperwork. Can I use my Health Savings Account (HSA) for this?

  • Yes, maternity leave paperwork is considered a medical expense and is HSA eligible.

Returning to Work:

What do I need to provide before returning to work?

  • A work release from your physician will need to be provided to Human Resources before you return to work.

Can I come back to work part-time? 

  • You do not have an automatic right to return to work part-time but you can discuss the possibility of a Flexible Work Arrangement with your supervisor. Information about Flexible Work Arrangements can be found at www.gvsu.edu/fwa.

What if I decide not to return to work at the end of the maternity leave period?

  • You will continue to be entitled to the remainder of any maternity leave and pay, however you are required to provide as much notice as possible to the University and the absolute minimum should be your normal contractual notice.

Other Resources:

Are there any resources available to help me prepare for parenthood?

How do I find childcare for when I return to work?

  • Resources for finding childcare can be found on the Health and Wellness website under Work Life Connections.

What about breastfeeding when I return to work?

  • GVSU is striving to make it easier for nursing mothers to maintain breast-feeding after returning to work by providing private and comfortable rooms for nursing mothers. Nursing resources can be found on the Health and Wellness website. 

As a faculty member, can I pause the tenured track while on maternity leave?

  • A faculty member may request an extension of the probationary period by pausing the tenure clock so that she or he may withdraw from teaching, work part-time or continue to work full-time while attending to other commitments. More information can be found in the Administrative Manual.

 

Questions about maternity leave of absences can be directed to Beth Evans, Human Resources Representative, in Human Resources at (616) 331-2215.

 

Page last modified February 25, 2014