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Academic Family Accommodation Policies

Click the headings below for brief descriptions of the UC San Diego academic personnel policies pertaining to family accommodations for academic appointees without binding memorandums of understanding.  For appointees covered by a Collective Bargaining Agreement Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), this policy applies only to the extent provided for in the MOU.

For further details, including specific eligibility information, refer to UC San Diego Policy & Procedure Manual (PPM) Section 230-15, Family Accommodations Policy, or consult your department's academic personnel staff.

For information on other types of leaves (e.g., sick leave, sabbatical, paid medical leave), refer to UC San Diego Policy & Procedure Manual (PPM) Section 230-10, Academic Leave Policy.

For information about state and federal laws (e.g., Family and Medical Leave Act, California Family Rights Act, Pregnancy Disability Leave), check with your department's academic personnel staff or campus benefits representative. Find information on using UC San Diego's medical and disability benefits.

Campus academic appointees and department chairs are also invited to contact Gabriel Lopez, Director of Policy and Family Programs at for consultations or discussions of possible benefits.

The campus form in place to request use of any academic policy summarized below is the UC San Diego Family Accommodations Reporting Form.


Accommodation of Pregnancy

As an alternative to or in addition to childbearing leave, the university will provide reasonable accommodations to a pregnant academic appointee upon request and if medically necessary. The accommodations will vary depending on the appointee's needs and the nature of her work.

Pregnancy accommodations are not considered a leave and are not counted as childbearing leave, pregnancy disability leave, family and medical leave, or Active Service – Modified Duties unless the accommodations take the form of intermittent leave or a reduced work schedule.

DisAbility Counseling and Consulting (DCC) is the Human Resources division that can provide additional information and advice regarding job accommodations.

Academic appointees should direct their requests for pregnancy accommodations to their department chairs.

Link to full Policy

Active Service Modified Duties (ASMD)

Active Service Modified Duties (ASMD) is a period of time in which an academic appointee is permitted to modify his or her duties in order to provide care for a family member as follows: 

  • To prepare for or provide care for a newborn child or a child newly placed in the appointee's home
  • To provide care for a seriously ill family member
  • To provide substantial care for an elder family member

 Eligibility for a period of ASMD extends from three months before to twelve months following the birth or placement of a child OR in any quarter in which the substantial care for a seriously ill family member or elder occurs.

For faculty, the modification of duties will include either partial or full relief from teaching without the assignment of additional teaching duties in the previous or subsequent quarter. In the quarter of a childbearing leave or parental bonding leave, there must be full relief from scheduled teaching duties without the assignment of additional teaching duties in the previous or subsequent quarters, unless the faculty member requests a partial teaching assignment. In the case of health sciences faculty, clinical duties may be reduced, as appropriate.

Eligibility for ASMD is not dependent on meeting FMLA/CFRA requirements and is not considered a leave. 

The total combined period of Active Service Modified Duties (ASMD), Childbearing Leave, and Parental Bonding Leave will not exceed the equivalent of three (3) quarters for childbearing candidates and two (2) quarter for non-childbearing candidates

Childbearing Leave (CBL)

Childbearing leave is provided to academic appointees, regardless of length of service, for the period of time before, during, and after childbirth that the academic appointee is temporarily disabled due to pregnancy, childbirth, and recovery.  Childbearing provides up to four (4) months to childbearing appointees for the period of time prior to, during, and after childbrith during which the appointee is temporarily disabled because of the pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. 

Academic appointees on childbearing leave will be relieved of all duties for the duration of the leave. Childbearing leave need not be taken in one continuous period of time, but may be taken on an as-needed basis, and may be preceded and/or followed by a period of Active Service – Modified Duties.

An academic appointee on childbearing leave who does not accrue sick time will receive their approved base salary for up to eight (8) weeks.  An academic appointee who accrues sick leave may, at their option, use accrued sick or vacation leave credit.

Eligibility for CBL is not dependent on meeting FMLA/CFRA requirements and is not considered a leave. 

  • CBL will run concurrenlty with California Pregnancy Disability Leave (PDL)
  • If appointee is FMLA eligible, first twelve (12) weeks of CBL run concurrently with FMLA.

If an academic appointee is disabled for more than eight (8) weeks because of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, they may be eligible to apply for additional paid medical leave (PPM 230-10, part II.F). Appointees should consult their department academic personnel staff or the Benefits Office for information on disability and other benefits.

Link to full Policy

Parental Bonding Leave (PBL)

Parental Bonding Leave is provided to all eligible academic appointees with responsibility for the care of a newborn child or a child newly placed in the appointee's home, regardless of length of service.  Parental bonding leave provides up to twelve (12) weeks of leave  per birth or placement.  PBL may be taken up to 12 months following the birth or placement of an eligible child in the appointee's home. It entails:

  • Up to twelve (12) weeks of leave in order to bond with a new child entering the home
  • Up to eight (8) weeks paid for academic appointees who do not accrue sick leave

Eligibility for PBL is not dependent on meeting FMLA/CFRA requirements and is not considered a leave. 

  • For childbearing appointees who are FMLA/CFRA eligibile and took Childbearing Leave concurrenlty with FMLA, Parental Bonding Leave runs concurrenlty with CFRA for twelve (12) weeks.
  • For non-childbearing appointees who are FMLA/CFRA eligible, PBL runs concurrently with both FMLA and CFRA for twelve (12) weeks.

An appointee on parental bonding leave will be relieved of all duties for the duration of the leave. 

Link to full Policy

Deferral of Merit Review

Any academic appointee who has an eligible qualifying event may request a one-year deferral of their normally scheduled merit review.

A deferral may be granted even if the academic appointee does not take a formal leave.

Qualifying Events are defined as below:

  1. Appointee is caring for an existing child, or a child who becomes part of the appointee’s family
  2. Appointee has significant eldercare responsibilities
  3. Appointee is caring for a seriously ill family member (as defined in PPM 230-15.II, Section E.1, above),
  4. Appointee’s ability to pursue his or her duties is significantly disrupted by the appointee’s own serious health condition or disability
  5. Appointee’s ability to pursue his or her duties is significantly disrupted by the death of a close family member
  6. Appointee’s ability to pursue his or her duties is significantly disrupted due to a significant circumstance or event beyond the appointee’s control that disrupts the appointee’s ability to pursue his or her duties.

For assistant-level faculty, deferral of a merit review may only be requested in conjunction with an extension of the probationary period. A deferral cannot be granted after initiation of a merit review.

Link to full Policy

Extension of Probationary Period for Assistant-level Appointees

An appointee in an assistant level title and subject to the eight-year limit may not be continued in that series after the eighth year unless promoted to the associate or full level. The period of time prior to consideration of a candidate for promotion is referred to as the probationary period. No extensions of the probationary period may occur if notification of the qualifying event is received after the beginning of the sixth year of appointment or follows a review decision not to continue an appointment.

Qualifying events can include caretaking for a new child in the home, personal illness or disability, caretaking for sick family members or eldercare, bereavement, and more. See above deferral tab for full list. An academic appointee reporting childbearing leave, parental bonding leave, or ASMD will automatically receive a one-year extension of the probationary period, unless the appointee opts out.  Additionally, academic appointees taking family leave equal to or in excess of one quarter (with or without salary) or those participating in a Flexible Workload Agreement will automatically receive a one-year extension.

An appointee is eligible to extend the probationary period even if no formal leave or modification of duties is requested.

Extensions are granted for a period of up to one year for each event. An appointee may be granted no more than two years of extension during the probationary period. If a deferral of academic review is desired in conjunction with an extension of the probationary period, this must be designated on the FAR form.

Extension of the probationary period does not prevent an appointee from requesting promotion sooner than required. See full policy for more details.

Link to full Policy

Family Leave without Pay

An academic appointee may take up to one year of full-time or part-time family leave without pay for the purpose of caring for his or her own child, the child of a spouse or domestic partner, a seriously ill family member (see official policy for guidelines), or an elder member of the family in need of substantial assistance.

Family leave is without pay, although academic appointees who accrue sick and/or vacation (those appointed on a fiscal-year basis) may substitute accrued sick or vacation time. Individual circumstances vary, and it is important to discuss possible options with your department academic personnel staff,

An appointee on Family Leave without Pay that does not run concurrently with FMLA or CFRA will be responsible for the continuation of benefits during any unpaid portion of the leave.  Appointees should consult with their departmental benefits contacts for additional information on coverage during leaves without pay.

Link to full Policy

Reproductive Loss Leave

Beginning January 1, an eligible employee may take up to five days of Reproductive Loss Leave following a reproductive loss by the employee, by the employee’s current spouse or domestic partner, or by another individual if the employee would have been a parent of a child had the reproductive loss not occurred. “Reproductive loss” means a failed adoption, failed surrogacy, miscarriage, stillbirth, or an unsuccessful assisted reproduction.

Information about the leave is available on UCnet

To request a leave, please complete the leave request form (PDF) and submit the form to your departmental AP contact.

Flexible Workload for Faculty

An academic appointee may request a flexible workload to accommodate his or her family responsibilities as follows:

  • to prepare and/or care for newborn child or a child newly placed in the  appointee’s home,
  • to care for a seriously ill family member (as defined  in PPM 230-15.II,Section E.1. above), or
  • to provide substantial care for and elder family member.

During the period of flexible workload, the faculty member's appointment will be temporarily reduced to 50 percent time. Accrued sabbatical credits or extramural grant funding may be used to supplement the faculty member's salary.  An appointee granted a flexible workload program must be relieved of structured teaching and most service responsibilities. 

For appointees supported by non-state funds, participation in a flexible workload program is contingent on compliance with relevant fund source terms and restrictions.

Link to full Policy

Memorandums of Understanding for Contracted Employees

Benefits for union-represented employees are determined through the collective bargaining process and sometimes differ from campus policies.  For these employees, union contracts apply and all aspects of agreements are negotiated.

View the negotiated Leaves policy the for Non-Senate Instructional Unit (IX).

View the negotiated Family and Medical Leave and Pregnancy Disability/Childbearing Leaves policy for the Professional Librarians Unit (LX).

For information related to postdoctoral scholars and their union contract, visit the UC San Diego Office of Postdoctoral and Visiting Scholar Affairs.

See all UC Bargaining Units and Contracts.