Catastrophic Leave

Eligible employees may donate accrued vacation leave to another eligible employee for use as sick leave during a catastrophic illness or injury, or for use as vacation leave during a family member’s catastrophic illness or injury. Eligible employees are faculty and staff who accrue vacation.

When leave is medically necessary due to an employee's own catastrophic illness or injury, contributions to that employee are converted to sick leave. The contributions are used when the employee has exhausted all the leave (sick leave, vacation, converted sick leave and compensatory time) to which they are entitled, and has not yet satisfied the 90 working day waiting period for long-term disability benefits.

When leave is necessary for a catastrophic illness or injury in an employee’s family (spouse, domestic partner, child, or parent), contributions to that employee are converted to vacation. The contributions are used when the employee has exhausted all the Family Caregiving Leave, vacation, and compensatory time to which they are entitled.

How Catastrophic Leave Works

Information for Employee in Need of Donations

Information for Employee Donations

Information for Departments

Catastrophic Need Listing

List of Individuals in Need of Donation

Forms

Application Forms

Application for Catastrophic Illness Leave Donation and Physician Verification - Individual  (pdf)

Application for Catastrophic Illness Leave Donation and Physician Verification Due to the Need to Attend to an Immediate Family Member (pdf)

Donation Forms

Employee Catastrophic Illness Donation Form (pdf)

Family Catastrophic Illness Donation Form (pdf)

Benefits Office

Campus address
120 USB
U.S. mailing address
The University of Iowa
University Benefits Office
120 University Services Bldg.
Iowa City, IA 52242-1911
Phone
319-335-2676
877-830-4001
FAX
319-335-2776

Frequently Asked Questions

The Catastrophic Leave program allows employees to donate part of their vacation time to other employees who have experienced a catastrophic illness or injury themselves or who must care for a family member who has had a catastrophic illness or injury. Only individuals who are eligible to earn vacation time may participate in this program.

The definition of “catastrophic leave” is a physical or mental illness or injury, as certified by a licensed physician, that will result in the inability of the employee to report to work for more than 30 work days (consecutively or intermittently) during a 12 month period.

As soon as it is apparent that you have an injury, condition, or illness that will require you to be absent at least 30 work days in a calendar year.

Yes.  For your own illness or injury, you must exhaust all paid leave, including sick leave, vacation, or compensatory time before receiving catastrophic leave donations.  If you have already met the 90 working day waiting period for long term disability, you are not eligible for the catastrophic leave program.  If you are caring for a family member, you must exhaust all family care-giving leave, vacation and compensatory time before applying for donations.