Employee FML FAQs

This will be a living FAQ document that will be updated periodically. If you have a question that should be added, please email ua-benefits@alaska.edu.

November 16, 2022: There have been updates to the 601 and 602 earnings code and 5-day reporting requirement. Please review the updates here. The FAQs below  have been updated to reflect the new processes.

All employees are eligible to request Family Medical Leave (FML). There are work requirements, listed below, to be eligible for entitlements. 

Federal FML Eligibility Requirements:

  • 1,250 hours worked in the immediate 12 months prior to the FML request (excluding all holidays and time off), AND
  • have worked for a total of 12 months for the University

State of Alaska FML Eligibility Requirements:

  • scheduled to work full time for six months prior to the FML request (including all holidays and time off), OR
  • scheduled to work part time for 12 months prior to the FML request (including all holidays and part time)
Other state leaves may apply depending on your work location. For questions on your eligibility, please contact Unum at 866-779-1054.

Federal:
Up to 12 weeks in 12 months for all conditions

State of Alaska: 
Up to 18 weeks in 24 months for a serious health condition
Up to 18 weeks in 12 months for pregnancy, childbirth, and adoption

You may be eligible for either federal or state entitlements, both entitlements, or neither. If eligible for both entitlements, they will run concurrently.

Other state leave laws may apply. Please contact Unum for questions on what entitlements you are eligible for at 866-779-1054. 

Part time employees are eligible based on their prorated proportion of full time.

If you are eligible and your leave qualifies, you have the right under federal FML for up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in a 12-month period calculated as a “rolling” 12-month period measured backward from the date of any FML leave usage.

Additionally, if you are eligible and your leave qualifies, you have the right under the Alaska Family Leave Act (AFLA) for up to 18 weeks of unpaid leave in a 24-month period for a serious health condition and up to 18 weeks of unpaid leave in a 12 month period for pregnancy, childbirth, or adoption. Leave under the AFLA is a “rolling” measurement period measured backward from the date of any AFLA usage.

Other state leave laws may apply depending on your work location. 

If you need an extension of your original leave request, you must notify Unum. If your entitlement has exhausted, you may not request an extension of your leave request.

Please note: If your leave is for a serious health condition, you will be required to provide additional certification from your medical provider for the extension of your leave.

If your leave request is for your own serious health condition and there is need for workplace assistance, please contact ua-equity@alaska.edu immediately for further discussion. Unum assists the University of Alaska in identifying reasonable modifications that may assist you in performing your job. 

If you are able to return to work sooner than your current estimated return to work date, you should notify Unum and your supervisor as soon as practicable. To notify Unum please call 1-866-779-1054. To notify your supervisor, please reach out to them directly.

If your leave is for your own health condition, you may be required to present your employer with a fitness-for-duty certificate as a condition of being restored to employment.

When you are absent from work due to an FML event, you will report time on your time sheet as sick leave (earnings code 550).

If you exhaust your sick leave, you must continue to use the sick leave code for all your FML absences. Sick leave will automatically cascade into your annual leave, faculty time off, and personal holiday. Any FML absence should be reported on your time sheet as sick leave (earnings code 550).

Once you have exhausted all your leaves, you may qualify for the Leave Share Program. More information on the Leave Share program can be found here: https://alaska.edu/hr/benefits/leave/share.php 

Employees on approved FML must report their FML hours to Unum to be approved for job-protected leave.

Reporting time to Unum can be completed in multiple locations either via their website, phone, or app. 

If you have an intermittent leave, you must notify Unum each time you need to take intermittent leave. Please notify your supervisor of any FML absences and enter sick leave on your time sheet. 

Reporting time to Unum can be completed in multiple locations either via their website, phone, or app. 

Employees on approved FML must report their FML hours to Unum to be approved for job-protected leave.

You do not need to report continuous leave to Unum. If you begin working during your FML, you will no longer be on continuous leave and will need to provide Unum with your change in schedule.

Yes. You must use your accumulated sick leave, annual leave, faculty time off, and your personal holiday during FML and/or state leave unless otherwise mandated by state law.  To do so, employees must use sick leave on their time sheets (earnings code 550).

If you do not have sufficient paid leave to cover your FML event, you are still be entitled to take unpaid FML.

After you have exhausted your paid leave, the remainder of your leave will be unpaid. Please contact
ua-benefits@alaska.edu if you are on unpaid FML as this may have an impact to your benefits, including
health care. You may also be eligible for the Leave Share Program if you are on approved FML for a
serious health condition.

Please note: If you are receiving workers’ compensation or disability benefits, then you may not use your accrued paid time off.

During your FML,  the University of Alaska will continue to pay its portion of your group health insurance premiums. Depending on your paid status, you will be required to pay for your portion of your health insurance premiums in one of two ways:

  1. Option #1 – I am on paid FML 

    During paid FML, your share of the premiums will continue through payroll deductions.

    You are on paid FML if you are
    (1) using sick leave (earnings code 550) for your FML event and you are pulling from your available paid leave(s), or
    (2) are eligible for and receiving leave share through the Leave Share Program.

  2.  Option #2 – I am on unpaid FML

    During unpaid FML, you are required to pay for your share of the premiums directly to the University of Alaska. Please contact ua-benefits@alaska.edu for more information regarding payments for benefit continuation during your leave.

    You are on unpaid FML if you have exhausted all of your paid leave balances and are not eligible for the leave share program.

    You have a 30-day grace period in which to make such premium payments. If you do not pay your share of the insurance premiums on a timely basis, your insurance coverage for yourself and/or your dependents may be terminated for the remainder of your leave.

Your employer will continue to cover Basic Life Insurance and Long-Term Disability while you are on FML. These are both employer paid benefits (meaning you, the employee, does not contribute to these accounts).

Supplemental Life and Accidental Death and Dismemberment will continue to be paid through payroll deductions while you are on paid FML.

When you are on unpaid FML, please contact ua-benefits@alaska.edu. You will need to pay the University of Alaska directly for these coverages if you would like them to continue while you are on unpaid FML.