Policies and Procedures Manual
Human Resources Department
PAID LEAVE BANK
A Paid Leave Bank ("Bank") is established to assist eligible employees
who are unable to perform the duties of their position because they
suffer from a long term injury or illness, and who would otherwise
have to take an unpaid leave of absence or terminate their employment.
Employees who donate at least ½ day (3.75 hours) of accrued sick,
vacation or personal leave or compensatory time to the Bank may
receive up to an initial 60 working days (450 hours) of paid leave
("Bank leave"), and may receive an additional 30 working days (225
hours) of Bank leave consistent with the policies contained in paragraph
B. Paid Leave Bank Committee:
A Committee, consisting of one member from each of the collective
bargaining units designated by the unions and associations representing
those units and two members designated by the Chief Justice for
Administration and Management, will administer the Bank.
The Committee's responsibilities include the following:
Selecting an individual licensed to practice medicine in the
Commonwealth of Massachusetts to act as the Bank Physician.
The Bank physician will determine the medical eligibility of
leave requests that are referred to him/her by the Committee
and may consult with other licensed health care practitioners
in making this determination.
Receiving and reviewing all documentation submitted by an employee
requesting Bank leave and determining whether the employee meets
the conditions for Bank leave as specified in paragraph D (2)
below or referring the request and all other relevant information
the Committee considered to the Bank Physician for medical determination.
Referral of a leave request to the Bank Physician will occur
whenever a member of the Committee calls for such review.
Notifying employees of the Committee's or the Bank Physician's
decision regarding their leave request.
Keeping records on the amount of leave donated to and allocated
from the Bank, and determining when additional donations are
Preparing all forms used by the Bank.
Recommending to the Chief Justice for Administration and Management
changes in the Bank's procedures.
3. The Committee will meet
within 10 days of receiving a leave request to determine whether
the employee meets the conditions for Bank leave as specified
in paragraph D (2) below or to refer the request to the Bank Physician.
If a request for Bank leave is forwarded to the
Bank Physician, the decision of the Bank Physician is final and
binding and not subject to appeal or the grievance and arbitration
procedures contained in the various collective bargaining agreements.
Otherwise, all decisions of the Committee concerning the administration
of this Bank are final and binding and not subject to appeal or
the grievance and arbitration procedures contained in the various
collective bargaining agreements, provided that issues concerning
the accrual and exhaustion of leave shall be determined by the
respective collective bargaining agreement or this Manual.
All costs associated with the Bank Physician's review will
be paid as follows:
For union employees whose request is forwarded to the
Bank Physician by the Committee, the costs will be shared equally
by the employee's union or association and the Trial Court.
If the request is forwarded to the Bank Physician by request
of a union employee pursuant to paragraph D (4) (c) below, the
costs will be paid by the employee.
For union exempt employees whose request is forwarded
to the Bank Physician by the Committee, the costs will be paid
by the Trial Court. If the request is forwarded to the Bank
Physician by request of a union exempt employee pursuant to
paragraph D (4) (c) below, the costs will be paid by the employee.
The Committee shall treat all medical information concerning
a request for Bank leave as confidential. Committee members are
prohibited from disclosing medical information concerning an employee's
injury or illness to any individual who is not responsible for
reviewing the employee's request for Bank leave unless the employee
permits such disclosure in writing. A Committee member who fails
to treat such medical information as confidential is subject to
immediate removal from the Committee.
All permanent employees of the Supreme Judicial Court,
the Appeals Court and the Trial Court, except Justices, elected
Clerks of Court in the Superior Court Department and elected Registers
of Probate in the Probate and Family Court Department, who have
completed their probationary period are eligible to join the Bank.
An employee who has had a bank established
by the General Court prior to the effective date of this Bank
may join the Bank under the following conditions:
The number of days that were donated to the legislatively
created bank are less that the 60 working days (450 hours) of
paid leave that members may receive from the Bank;
The employee complies with the membership requirements
of this paragraph;
The provisions of subsection D below will govern the
use of Bank leave, except that the maximum number of days the
employee may receive from the Bank will be the difference between
the total number of days that were donated to his/her legislatively
created bank and 60 working days (450 hours).
Employees may join the Bank by donating ½ day (3.75 hours)
of accrued sick, vacation or personal leave or compensatory time.
The Committee will determine when additional donations are needed
consistent with paragraph 7 below.
Employees who choose to join the Bank must make their donation
within the 30 calendar day period following the effective date
of the Bank's implementation.
Employees who are not members of the Bank may elect to
join during the open enrollment period. The Bank's open enrollment
period shall coincide with the Group Insurance Commission's annual
enrollment period for health plan coverage. Employees electing
to join are required to donate a ½ day (3.75 hours) of accrued
sick, vacation or personal leave or compensatory time. Newly hired
employees may choose to join the Bank within 15 days of completing
their probationary period. Existing members may also be required
to elect to renew their membership (without additional donations
unless the Committee determines additional donations are needed)
during the open enrollment period.
All donations to the Bank shall be submitted in accordance
with the following procedure:
The employee shall complete the employee's portion of the Election
and Open Enrollment Form
(Appendix C, Form F24) and submit it to his/her department
The department head shall ensure that the employee making the
donation has accrued enough sick, vacation or personal leave
or compensatory time to cover the donation, make the necessary
adjustment to the employee's attendance calendar to reflect
the donation, and complete the manager's portion of the Election
and Open Enrollment Form.
The department head shall forward the completed Election
and Open Enrollment Form
to the Committee within three working days of receipt
from the employee.
The Committee will determine the level at which the Bank
needs additional donations. When additional donations are needed,
the Committee will first notify all non-members that they may
become members by donating ½ day (3.75 hours) of accrued sick,
vacation or personal leave or compensatory time. If more donations
are needed, the Committee will then notify all members that in
order to remain members they must donate an additional ½ day (3.75
hours) of sick, vacation or personal leave or compensatory time.
Failure to make this additional donation will constitute resignation
from the Bank and loss of its benefits. Such an individual may
re-join the Bank during the next enrollment period.
Employees who voluntarily resign may donate any portion
of the sick leave they have accrued prior to their termination.
Dissolution of the Bank will occur if the level of donations
in the Bank drops below 90 days (675 hours) and the Committee
is unable to increase the level with additional donations pursuant
to paragraph 7 above. Starting with the employees who have been
members of the Bank for the longest period, any unused days will
be returned in the form they were donated until all days on deposit
are distributed and the Bank is dissolved. In case of a tie, seniority
of employment in the Judiciary will be used to determine to whom
unused days will be returned.
Withdrawal of Leave:
Only employees who have maintained membership in the Bank
by making the donation(s) required under paragraph C above are
eligible for Bank leave.
A member may receive Bank leave if the following conditions
The member is suffering from a long term injury or illness
as determined by the Committee or the Bank Physician. For purposes
of this section, a long term injury or illness is defined as
an injury, illness, impairment, physical or mental condition
which prevents the employee from performing the duties of his/her
position for a period of 60 work days or more in a 2-year period.
The 60 work days may be consecutive or occur within the 2-year
period from the filling of the leave request;
The long term injury or illness will cause the member
to take an unpaid leave of absence or terminate his/her employment.
All requests for Bank leave shall be submitted in accordance
with the following procedure:
The member shall complete the employee's
portion of the Withdrawal
Form (Appendix C, Form F25).
The member shall submit the Withdrawal
Form along with documentation from a licensed physician
describing the condition and the anticipated length of disability
to the employee's department head as soon as practicable following
the employee's absence from work.
The department head shall complete the manager's portion of
the Withdrawal Form
and submit the completed form and supporting documentation
to the Committee within three working days of receipt from the
employee. The completed form should be submitted as soon as
possible following the employee's absence from work.
The Committee will review each request for Bank leave to
ensure that the employee has maintained his/her membership in
the Bank and that the necessary information has been submitted.
If the employee has not maintained membership in the Bank, the
Committee will notify the employee in writing that the request
If the employee has maintained membership in the Bank, the Committee
will review the request to determine whether the employee meets
the conditions for Bank leave as specified in paragraph D (2)
above or may refer the request to the Bank Physician for medical
determination. The Bank Physician shall provide the Committee
with a written report which determines the employee's eligibility
for Bank leave as specified in paragraph D (2) above. The Committee
or Bank Physician may request additional information from the
employee's physician in order to complete the review.
If the Committee determines that an employee does not meet the
conditions for Bank leave as specified in paragraph D (2) above,
the employee may ask that his/her request be forwarded to the
Bank Physician for medical determination within 30 calendar
days of receipt of the Committee's determination.
The Committee will notify the employee of the decision on his/her
request for Bank leave and the amount of such leave that the
employee may receive. A member may receive up to 60 working
days (450 hours) of Bank leave in a 2-year period. The Committee
will send a copy of its notification to the employee's department
head, the union or association that represents the employee,
the Human Resources Department of the Administrative Office
of the Trial Court, the Commissioner of Probation (if applicable)
and the Jury Commissioner (if applicable).
employee who has received approval for an initial 60 work days
(450 hours) of Bank leave and who is unable to return to work
may request in writing up to an additional 30 work days (225
hours) of Bank leave. All requests for additional Bank leave
must be accompanied with supporting medical documentation justifying
the need for the additional time. All such requests shall be
automatically referred to the Bank Physician. The decision of
the Bank Physician shall be final and binding. A total of 90
work days (675 hours) within a 2-year period is the maximum
amount of Bank leave an eligible employee may receive.
A member whose request for Bank leave is approved must exhaust
all accrued sick leave or vacation leave, personal days, compensatory
time, and all other forms of paid leave before he/she may use
A member who is receiving Bank leave will receive his/her regular
rate of pay, and will also continue to accrue vacation and sick
leave and credit for step increases. The member must use such
accrued leave before Bank leave is used.
A member who is receiving income from workers' compensation pursuant
to M.G.L. c. 152 or from a state sponsored Long Term Disability
Insurance Plan is not eligible to receive Bank leave. Any Bank
leave received by a member prior to receipt of workers' compensation
benefits will be deducted from the workers' compensation by the
Trial Court and will be credited back to the Bank.
A member who returns to work on a full-time or part-time basis
after receiving Bank leave may be required to return any unused
leave to the Bank. Upon return to work, the member is required
to contact the Paid Leave Bank Committee to determine whether
he/she needs to return unused Bank leave. If such a member is
absent from work within the 2- year period from the filing of
the leave request, he/she may re-apply for the amount of the unused
leave he/she returned to the Bank.
The provisions of this bank may be modified by written mutual
agreement of the Chief Justice for Administration and Management
and the various collective bargaining representatives.
A member is not eligible to buy-back unused Bank leave upon termination
of employment. Such unused Bank leave must be returned to the
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