University of Minnesota
Office of Human Resources

Constructing Your Leave

Depending on your employment classification and the benefits you have elected, you can construct a leave for the birth or adoption of your child using these resources, which may also be available if you need to take time off during pregnancy for health reasons.

  • University-paid parental leave (after birth or adoption only)
  • Accrued sick leave
  • Accrued vacation leave
  • Leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
  • Additional unpaid leave
  • Short-term disability insurance

Parental Leave

If you qualify, you can request a paid parental leave for the birth or adoption of your child. If your spouse or same-sex domestic partner gives birth or adopts a child, you may also qualify for a paid parental leave.

Parental leaves for University employees range from two weeks to six weeks depending on your employee group.

Employee Group Biological Mother Biological Father Adoptive Parent
Faculty and P&A Staff (except Duluth Faculty) Six weeks paid leave Two weeks paid leave plus four weeks unpaid leave Two weeks paid leave plus four weeks unpaid leave
Duluth Faculty Six weeks paid leave Four weeks paid leave plus two weeks unpaid leave Four weeks paid leave plus two weeks unpaid leave
Civil Service and Bargaining Unit Employees Two weeks paid leave, plus up to 20 days of accumulated sick leave Two weeks paid leave Two weeks paid leave

Accrued Sick Leave

Policies, rules and contract language governing sick leave vary by employee group. For more details about sick leave read the policy for your employee group at the bottom of this page.

Accrued Vacation Leave

After your parental leave and allowed sick leave expire, both biological and adoptive parents may extend their leave using vacation.

Family & Medical Leave Act

The Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows you to take a leave for birth, adoption, or foster care placement of a child. The leave is without pay but with continuation of the University's contribution to your benefits including medical and dental plans, life insurance, and retirement benefits.

If you have specific FMLA questions, please contact your HR Consultant or read the University's Family & Medical Leave Act policy.

Additional Unpaid Leave

If you want to extend your leave after using your parental leave, allowable sick and vacation time, and FMLA leave, you may do so without pay. While on unpaid leave, the University will bill you for the full cost of your medical and dental plans and life insurance. You may also elect to continue paying for your optional benefits (disability, additional life, spouse/same-sex domestic partner life, and child life).

Short-term Disability Insurance

If you have purchased voluntary short-term disability insurance, call 612-624-UOHR (612-624-8647) or 800-756-2363 to reach the Employee Benefits Service Center for information on how to apply for your benefit payment.


Carefully read the policies for your employee group to determine the total length of leave you can take using these combined resources; whether you qualify for a paid parental leave; and how to notify your supervisor of your leave and intentions to return.