UNC System’s new Paid Parental Leave Policy becomes effective Jan. 1

Western Carolina University will implement the University of North Carolina System’s new paid parental leave benefit for eligible, leave-earning SHRA and EHRA staff, effective Wednesday, Jan. 1.

The paid parental leave benefit allows for up to four weeks (160 hours) of paid parental leave for the birth parent for recuperation during the disability period for a newborn child. The benefit also allows for an additional four weeks (160 hours) for both the birth and non-birth parent to care for and bond with an eligible child. Paid parental leave will be pro-rated for eligible part-time employees.

Covered employees utilizing approved leave for the birth, adoption or foster care (or other legal) placement of a child that occurs on or after Jan. 1 will be eligible for paid parental leave. Additionally, covered employees may be eligible to apply for paid parental leave (on a current basis) for otherwise qualifying events that occur between Sept. 1, 2019, and Dec. 31, 2019.

An employee’s eligibility for paid parental leave is based upon the employee’s months of service and hours of work as of the date of the qualifying life event. To qualify, an employee must be full time or part time (half time or more) in a permanent, probationary or time-limited (benefits-eligible) position; have been continuously employed by the state of North Carolina for the immediate 12 months; and have been in pay status for at least 1,040 hours in the previous 12-month period. Faculty who are covered under University Policy #89 (Serious Illness and Disability Leave for Faculty) are not covered under the new Paid Parental Leave Policy.

WCU’s Office of Human Resources and Payroll will hold three sessions to provide more detailed information on this new program. The meetings will be held in the human resources training room, Suite 302, in H.F. Robinson Administration Building on the following days:

  • Friday, Dec. 13, at 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, Jan. 9, at 10 a.m.
  • Friday, Jan. 10, at 4 p.m.

For more information, contact Anne Banks at 828-227-2794 or Trisha Ray at 828 227-2522.

Information provided by WCU’s Office of Human Resources and Payroll