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Leave Without Pay Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) Leave without pay may be granted at the discretion of the university. A staff member may seek leave without pay for various reasons, including but not limited to:

  1. the pursuit of commercialisation activities or the commencement of start-ups relevant to the staff member’s duties or research; or
  2. personal and/or family reasons.

(2) This Policy does not apply to unpaid leave associated with parental leave or personal leave. Leave provisions relevant to these areas are contained in Parental leave and Personal leave.

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Section 2 - Application

(3) This Policy applies to all staff of the university.

(4) Leave without pay would normally be granted only after all accrued recreation leave and/or long service leave has been exhausted. Leave without pay will automatically apply where a staff member has exhausted all paid leave entitlements and remains absent from the university.

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Section 3 - Roles and Responsibilities

Position Responsibility
Staff member Provides as much notice as possible of the proposed leave.

Informs their Supervisor/Manager of the proposed leave.

Submits an application for leave.
Supervisor/Manager Considers a staff member’s request/application for leave.

Provides recommendation to the authorising officer.
Authorising officer Determines the final outcome of an application for leave.
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Section 4 - Conditions

(5) If a continuous period of leave without pay exceeds 10 working days, the period of leave exceeding 10 days:

  1. is not recognised as service for the purpose of calculating long service leave, recreation leave and personal leave;
  2. will affect the staff member’s average service fraction for the purpose of calculating paid parental leave entitlements.

(6) If leave without pay is taken during a period of probation, the probation will be suspended for the period of leave without pay.

(7) Leave without pay is not normally granted in broken periods separated by periods of accrued leave (for example, long service and/or recreation leave). Public holidays which fall in the period of leave without pay form part of the leave (i.e. will be unpaid).

(8) Staff whose positions may be affected by a formal change process in accordance with the enterprise agreements whilst on leave without pay will be notified of any proposed changes and will be provided an opportunity to participate in any consultation.

(9) A Supervisor may require reasonable evidence in support of an application for leave without pay.

(10) A staff member will provide as much notice as possible prior to the commencement of a requested period of leave without pay.

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Section 5 - Superannuation Contributions

(11) Prior to requesting a period of leave without pay, staff are encouraged to contact their relevant superannuation fund to determine how superannuation contributions may be impacted by a period of leave without pay.

(12) A staff member who’s employer contributions are being made to a UniSuper Defined Benefit product may, for periods of approved leave without pay, apply to the university to make payments to UniSuper to cover staff member and QUT contributions which would have otherwise been made to UniSuper in respect of that Defined Benefit had the staff member not been on approved leave without pay. Such payments will be funded entirely by the staff member.

(13) QUT staff who are members of QSuper are encouraged to contact the fund to understand how leave without pay affects their contributions.

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Section 6 - Return to Work

(14) Leave without pay is granted with the expectation that the staff member would resume work with the university on the first working day after the expiration of the period of approved leave without pay, and not before.

(15) A staff member seeking to extend a period of approved leave without pay, must provide the university with as much notice as possible (and before the expiration of the period of approved leave). The additional period of requested leave without pay is subject to approval by the relevant authorising officer.

(16) A staff member who does not intend to resume their employment with QUT at the end of their approved period of leave without pay must provide the university with the required period of notice of termination by a staff member as outlined in the relevant Enterprise Agreement, or in the case of a senior staff member, the required period of notice as outlined in their contract of employment. At its discretion, the university may accept a shorter period of notice.

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Section 7 - Exceptions to Policy

(17) The Vice-President (People) and Chief People Officer is authorised to approve variations to this Policy in exceptional circumstances. Any such variation will be recorded by Human Resources.

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Section 8 - Delegations

(18) Refer to Register of Authorities and Delegations (VC108, VC110, VC113) (QUT staff access only).