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District of Columbia Leave Laws

D.C. Voluntary Leave Transfer Program for Public Employees

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Who Is Eligible?

You are eligible for the Voluntary Leave Transfer Program if you have been an employee of the D.C. Government for at least 1 year without interruption.

What Is Transferred Leave?

Every D.C. agency must establish a voluntary leave transfer program. Under that program annual leave accrued by one employee (the leave "contributor") may be transferred to you (the leave "recipient").

How Do I Become A Recipient Employee?

You may apply to become a recipient employee IF:

  1. You expect to have a "prolonged" absence from work (meaning an absence from work for at least 10 consecutive workdays which will cause you substantial loss of income because you do not have available paid leave), and
  2. Your absence is due to your serious health condition or because of your responsibility to provide "personal care" for an "immediate relative."

"Immediate Relative" - means a person related by blood or marriage. For example, immediate relative includes your father, mother, child, husband or wife; an individual for whom you are legal guardian; or, a domestic partner.

"Personal Care" -- means assistance that helps an immediate relative with activities of daily living, including bathing, eating, dressing, and continence.

How Do I Apply?

You must complete a written application requesting to become a recipient employee. In the application, you must state:

  1. The anticipated length of your absence;
  2. Your name and the name of the potential leave contributor;
  3. The amount of leave requested.

In addition you must present:

  1. An signed affidavit stating that the individual you must provide personal care for is an immediate relative or that you must provide care in connection with a recent adoption of a child or care for a newborn child; and
  2. Certification from a healthcare professional stating that you have a serious health condition or that your immediate relative requires personal care. You do not need certification in cases where you are taking leave in connection with a pregnancy, recent adoption, or care of a newborn.

How Much Leave Am I Entitled To?

You may be entitled to receive up to 320 hours of transferred leave during any 12-month period. However, those hours must be contributed from another agency employee. The other employee must request to contribute a specific number of their accrued annual leave to you. However, they cannot contribute more than one-half of the leave that they would accrue during the year.

Is My Employer Required to Accept My Application?

Not necessarily. Your employer may consider your past record, the likelihood that you will return to work after leave, and any disruption your leave may cause the agency. However, if you are eligible for leave under the Federal Family and Medical Leave Act then your employer must grant your application for leave. Your employer must tell you whether your application is approved within 15 days of receiving your application.

Researched and written by:

Lisa Gerson, Esq. McDermott Will & Emery LLP New York, NY

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