RMIT University Academic and Professional Staff Enterprise Agreement 2014


46. Parental leave

46.1 Maternity, Adoption and Permanent Carer Leave

46.1.1

An employee who submits to RMIT a certificate from a registered medical practitioner stating that she is pregnant and specifying the expected date of delivery will be entitled to paid maternity leave, commencing within the period of six weeks before the expected date of delivery, in accordance with the table at clause 46.1.3.

46.1.2

An employee who submits satisfactory evidence of being the primary care giver, and an approved applicant for the adoption of a child or becoming a Permanent Carer for a child, together with the date of placement of that child, will be entitled to paid adoption/Permanent Carer leave in accordance with the table at clause 46.1.3.

46.1.3

Maternity, Adoption and Permanent Carer leave entitlements are detailed in the tables below.

Maternity leave

Length of Continuous Service

Entitlement

3 or more years

24 weeks

1 year but less than 3 years

Between 14 and 24 weeks accrued on a pro-rata basis per completed month of continuous service

Less than 1 year

Pro-rata per month, up to 12 months service, of 14 weeks

Adoption and Permanent Carer leave

Length of continuous service

Child is younger than 12 months

Child is 12 months or older

3 or more years

24 weeks

18 weeks

1 year but less than 3

Between 14 and 24 weeks accrued on a pro-rata basis per completed month of continuous service

Between 8 and 18 weeks accrued on a pro-rata basis per completed month of continuous service

1 year

14 weeks

8 weeks

Less than 1 year

Up to 14 weeks accrued on a pro-rata basis per completed month of continuous service

46.2

RMIT may, with written notice of five working days, direct an employee to commence maternity leave at any time within the six weeks prior to the expected date of delivery but the employee will be entitled to remain on duty upon the submission of a certificate from a registered medical practitioner stating that she is fit to work.

46.3

Where the pregnancy terminates earlier than 20 weeks before the expected date of delivery, the entitlement to maternity leave will cease. Where the pregnancy terminates by miscarriage or results in still-birth within 20 weeks of the expected date of delivery, the employee will be entitled to half of the paid maternity leave in accordance with the table in clause 46.1.3 above and, where certified by a medical practitioner, leave without pay so that the total period of leave is up to 24 weeks.

46.4

An employee may take parental leave by giving eight weeks written notice of the intended date of commencement and period of leave to be taken, unless the University waives this requirement. The period of leave may be reduced with the University’s approval or extended up to the relevant maximum by the employee giving 10 days written notice. Normal incremental advance will continue during parental leave.

46.5

Employees eligible for maternity, adoption or Permanent Carer leave are also entitled to such additional unpaid leave as will bring the aggregate leave to 12 months. Such leave will be taken during the period from 20 weeks before the date of delivery to 12 months after the commencement of the period of paid leave. Beyond the initial 12 months leave, an employee may request a further period of up to 12 months unpaid leave.

46.6

With the agreement of the relevant manager, the period of paid maternity, adoption or Permanent Carer leave may be doubled by taking leave at half-pay, on the basis that all leave and superannuation accruals during the period will also accrue pro-rata.

46.7 Return to Work

46.7.1

On return to work from parental leave, an employee will be entitled to the same time fraction, substantive classification and salary as applied at the commencement of the leave, with duties commensurate with the employee’s qualifications and experience and as similar as possible to those performed before taking leave.

46.7.2

In addition to clause 46.7.1, an employee who, because of pregnancy, worked a reduced time fraction immediately prior to taking leave, will be entitled to the same time fraction, substantive classification and salary with duties commensurate with the employee’s qualifications and experience and as similar as possible to those performed before commencing that reduced time fraction.

46.7.3

On return to work from parental leave, an employee may with University agreement temporarily reduce their time fraction, with an entitlement to revert to their substantive time fraction at an agreed date within five years following their return from parental leave.

46.7.4

An employee will give the University written notice of their intention to return to work from maternity, adoption or permanent carer leave or extend their leave period at least eight weeks before the expiration of the period of maternity, adoption or permanent carer leave. In exceptional circumstances the employee may provide written notice four weeks prior to the expiration of the period of maternity, adoption or permanent carer leave.

46.7.5

The employee will develop a return to work plan for agreement with the supervisor to facilitate re-entry to the workforce which may, in the case of an academic, include measures to re-establish a research profile. This plan should be finalised no later than four weeks prior to the expiration of the period of maternity, adoption or permanent carer leave.

46.7.6

An employee returning to work from maternity, adoption or permanent carer leave is entitled to a return to work bonus that accrues at the rate of the equivalent of one week of pay per completed month of service following the return to work to a maximum of 12 weeks pay. This bonus is not payable in circumstances where a pregnancy has terminated early or resulted in still birth.

46.7.7

The return to work bonus can be used:

(a) as an allowance to supplement reduced salary due to reduced time fraction on return from parental leave, up to a maximum of the employee’s substantive time fraction; and/or

(b) to fund research, conference attendance, staff development; and/or

(c) other assistance as approved by the University.

46.7.8

If the return to work bonus is paid as an allowance it will be paid to the employee over the course of the first 12 months following their return to work on condition that should the employee cease employment with RMIT then any amount paid in advance of the accrual described in clause 46.7.6 will be repaid by the employee.

46.8

Where an employee’s time fraction has varied, the entitlement to paid maternity, adoption and permanent carer leave and the Return to Work Bonus is calculated on the weighted average of the time fraction over the preceding period of continuous service to a maximum of three years. Provided that any change in time fraction due to pregnancy-related issues or on return from parental leave, will not impact on calculation of subsequent parental leave and return to work bonus entitlements.

For the purposes of calculating parental leave entitlements and the Return to Work Bonus, approved leave without pay (excluding unpaid parental leave) will be treated as a zero time fraction.

46.9 Partner Leave

46.9.1

An employee who submits a statutory declaration of acceptance of responsibility for the ongoing care of a child and who is the secondary carer/partner parent of the child will be entitled to five consecutive or aggregate days of paid leave. The leave will be taken within the period commencing a week before the expected date of birth and ending six weeks after the actual date or, in the case of adoption or becoming a Permanent Carer, within six weeks from the date of placement.

46.10

Where both parents are employed by RMIT, they may elect to share the entitlement of one employee to maternity, adoption or Permanent Carer leave or Return to Work Bonus.

46.11

A fixed term employee on paid parental leave whose contract expires will not be eligible for further paid leave unless re-employed on continuing or further fixed term appointment. The provision of parental leave will not be grounds for termination of a contract or for a refusal of further employment.

46.12 Casual Employee Parental Leave

A casual employee is entitled to unpaid Parental Leave where they:

(a) have been employed by the University on a regular and systematic basis for a sequence of period of employment over a period of at least 12 months immediately prior to commencing leave; and

(b) would have a reasonable expectation of further employment with the University on a regular and systematic basis, but for the birth/expected birth of the child; or the placement/expected placement of the child; or the taking of a period of unpaid Parental Leave.

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