Sick leave

The Disability Management Guide (PDF) provides a summary of your sick leave as well as:

  • an overview of the claims management processes,
  • roles and responsibilities, and
  • additional information and resources.

Important information about sick leave that is not included in the guide is provided below.

Sick leave and vacation

An employee absent due to illness or injury will continue to accrue Vacation credits for a maximum period of six months (180 calendar days) or to the end of his/her sick leave, whichever comes first.

Employees returning from a prolonged absence are expected to complete two weeks of regularly scheduled hours and duties before vacation may be authorized.

Employees who are hospitalized or the equivalent during their scheduled vacation period may be eligible to re-schedule that portion of their vacation. Such re-scheduling requires verifiable medical documentation satisfactory to Occupational Health. The timing of the re-scheduled vacation time is subject to approval by the manager or supervisor.

Employees should advise the disability management team if they have scheduled vacation time during a sick leave period.

Sick leave during layoff periods

***Important: The Disability Management Team MUST be contacted in situations where an employee is ill prior, during, or recalled from a period of layoff to determine impacts of benefits to the employee.

Sick leave and long term disability (LTD) are not payable during layoff although the qualifying period for LTD may be met during a layoff period. Sick leave benefits do not accrue during periods of layoff.

If an employee is receiving sick leave prior to a seasonal layoff, the layoff effective date begins once sick leave ends. If illness prevents a return to work on the permanent recall effective date, any remaining sick leave is payable followed by eligible LTD benefit payments.


  • If an employee is laid off but due to work demands or seniority is recalled sick leave would normally apply.
  • If an employee becomes ill while on layoff, sick leave is not payable. If the employee continues to be ill at the permanent recall date, any remaining sick leave is payable at that time.
  • If an employee is laid off and is recalled for a temporary period of time but is unable to return for the temporary period due to illness, the employee is not eligible for sick leave.
  • If the employee is called back temporarily and becomes unable to work due to illness, the employee is eligible to use available sick leave benefits for the duration of the temporary recall period.
  • If the permanent recall date arrives and a return to work is not possible due to illness, remaining sick leave benefits or LTD are payable.

Applying for other positions while on sick leave

In order to apply for an advertised position while on sick leave, you must provide the occupational health nurse (for faculty) or the disability advisor (for all other employees) with verifiable medical information, indicating your return to work is imminent and any return to work instructions.

Absences longer than one year

Staff and Canadian Union of Public Employees 793 positions are kept open for one year from the first date absent (note - absences due to workplace injury are governed by Workplace Safety and Insurance Bureau legislation).

If, at the one year timeframe, a return is not imminent (imminent defined as within the following two months), departments are permitted to fill the position.