Procedure 5.26.01 - Voluntary Shared Leave

General Guidelines

  1. Establishment of a leave bank for use by unnamed employees is expressly prohibited. Leave must be donated on a one-to-one personal basis.
  2. An employee may not directly or indirectly intimidate, threaten, coerce, or attempt to intimidate, threaten, or coerce, any other employee for the purpose of interfering with any right which such employee may have with respect to donating, receiving, or using annual leave under this program. Such action by an employee is grounds for disciplinary action up to and including dismissal on the basis of personal conduct. Individual leave records are confidential, and only individual employees may reveal their donation or receipt of leave. The employee donating leave cannot receive remuneration for the leave donated.


  1. The employee must be eligible to earn annual leave (or sick leave, if applicable). Participation in this program is based on the employee’s past compliance with rules.
  2. An employee who has a medical condition and who receives benefits from the Disability Income Plan of North Carolina (DIPNC) is not eligible to participate in the shared leave program. Shared leave, however, may be used during the required waiting period and following the waiting period, provided DIPNC benefits have not begun.
  3. An employee on workers’ compensation leave who is drawing temporary total disability compensation may be eligible to participate in this program. Use of donated leave under the workers’ compensation program is limited to use with the supplemental leave schedule published by the Office of State Personnel.
  4. The policy ordinarily does not apply to short-term or sporadic conditions or illnesses, including such things as sporadic, short-term recurrences of chronic allergies or conditions; short-term absences due to contagious diseases; or short-term, recurring medical or therapeutic treatments. These examples are illustrative, not all inclusive. Each case must be examined and decided based on its conformity to policy intent and must be handled consistently and equitably.

Application Procedure

  1. By letter of application to the intended recipient’s supervisor, a recipient applies or is nominated by a fellow employee to participate in the program.
  2. Application for participation includes name, social security number, and a description of the medical condition and estimated length of time needed to participate in the program. A doctor’s statement must be attached to the application.
  3. The Privacy Act of 1974 makes medical information confidential; therefore, prior to making the employee’s (or family member’s) medical status public for purpose of receiving shared leave, the employee must sign a release to allow the status to be known. Otherwise, only a statement that the recipient (or family member) has a prolonged medical condition may be made.
  4. The supervisor reviews the merits of the request and recommends approval or disapproval. The supervisor’s recommendation is made to the division vice president who, after consultation with the Director of Human Resources, makes a recommendation to the college president. Final approval or disapproval of the request is made by the president.

Recipient Guidelines

  1. A prospective recipient may make application for voluntary shared leave at such time as medical evidence is available to support the need for leave beyond the employee’s available accumulated leave.
  2. Participation in this program is limited to 1,040 hours (prorated for part-time employees), either continuously or on a recurring basis for the same condition. However, the administration may grant the employee additional hours on a month to month basis up to a maximum of 2,080 hours, if the employee would have otherwise been granted leave without pay.
  3. Subject to the maximum of 1,040 hours, the number of hours of leave an employee can receive is equal to the projected recovery or treatment period, less the employee’s combined annual and sick leave balance as of the beginning of the recovery or treatment period. The employee must exhaust all available leave before using donated leave.
  4. All leave donated shall be credited to the recipient’s sick leave account and will be charged according to sick leave policy.
  5. At the expiration of the medical condition, as determined by the college, any unused leave in the recipient’s donated leave account is treated as follows:
    1. The annual and sick leave account balance shall not exceed a combined total of 40 hours (prorated for part-time employees).
    2. Any additional unused donated leave is returned to the donor(s) on a pro rata basis and credited to the leave account from which it was donated. Fractions of one hour are not returned to an individual donor.
  6. If a recipient separates from college employment, participation in the program ends. Donated leave is returned to donor(s) on a pro rata basis.

Donor Guidelines

  1. A donor may contribute annual leave to another college employee or to a coworker’s immediate family member who is an employee of a community college, public school or State agency. A donor may contribute annual or sick leave to an immediate family member who is an employee of a community college, public school or State agency.
  2. The minimum amount to be donated is four hours.
  3. The maximum amount of annual leave allowed to be donated by one individual is no more that the amount of the individual’s annual accrual rate. However, the amount donated is not to reduce the donor’s annual leave balance below one-half of the annual leave accrual rate.

Example 1 – Employee with 5 but less than 10 years of state service earns 134 hours of annual leave per year. Employee may contribute four or more hours but may not reduce annual leave balance below 67 hours. Example 2 – Employee with more than 20 or more years of state service earns 206 hours of annual leave per year. Employee may contribute four or more hours but may not reduce annual leave balance below 103 hours.

Leave Accounting Procedures

  1. To facilitate the administration of the program, the college establishes a specific time period during which leave can be donated.
  2. The college establishes a system of leave accountability that accurately records leave donations and recipients’ use. Such accounts provide a clear and accurate record for financial and management audit purposes.
  3. Withdrawals from the recipient’s leave account are charged to the recipient’s account according to usual leave policies.
  4. Leave transferred under this program is available for use on a current basis or may be retroactive for up to 30 calendar days to substitute for leave without pay or advanced annual or sick leave already granted to the leave recipient.
  5. Each approved medical condition stands alone, and donated leave not used for each approved incident is returned to the donor(s). Employees who donate excess leave (any amount above the 240 maximum allowable carryover) at the end of June may not have it returned and converted to sick leave. Use of shared leave is subject to guidelines specified in Title 25 Subchapter 01E Section .1300 of the North Carolina Administrative Code.

Adopted: May 25, 1993

Revised:  November 15, 1994