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UIC Faculty Affairs HR

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Appointment
Compensation
Leaves
Benefits
Separations

Appointment

Q.  A Faculty member who provides service for 9 months but is paid over 12 months (9/12) is employed beginning in August. Must the employee be paid out in 12 monthly installments? 

A. The University understands that there can be financial hardship and will allow a 9/12 employee to be employed in their initial year as a 9/9.The employee must convert to a 9/12 appointment in the second year. The faculty member should be advised that no compensation will be provided over the summer months (May 16-August 15) unless he/she holds a summer appointment.  Additionally, the faculty member will be billed for health insurance costs during the three-month summer period unless he/she has a summer appointment. 

Q.  I am hiring a brand new tenure track faculty member who will start August 16th.  Do I need to have prior Board of Trustee (BOT) approval?

A. Prior BOT approval is not required for Assistant Professors. However should the annual salary exceed the normal range for that specific rank and discipline prior approval by the Provost is required. The offer packet should be submitted to Faculty Affairs Human Resources (FAHR) along with a completed Chancellor’s Briefing Document (CBD)

Associate Professors and full Professors require prior approval by both the Provost and the Dean of Graduate College.

Q.  A faculty member who provides service for 9 months but is paid over 12 months (9/12), begins employment at the UIC on August 25th. Does the faculty member receive their full annual salary?

A.  No. When hiring a 9-month faculty member paid over 12 months on an initial partial term appointment, you must take into account that the employee will not be paid the full annual amount in this first partial year of service. The monthly rate must be adjusted to account for the late start date (8/25) and the fact that the appointment and pay dates will be through August 15 of the following year.  The formula below can be used to determine the reduced monthly and annual salary for the first partial year.

 Example:  A 9/12 faculty is being hired on August 25th at $72,000.

Note: For tenure assistant professors whose initial year begins after the eighth week of the academic year, the employee and hiring unit must complete the tenure probationary form:  Service Toward Completion of the Probationary Period. This form must be routed to FAHR.

Q.  We want to employ a faculty member who retired in 2003.  What needs to be done and what are the appropriate titles that we can use if they are teaching or conducting research?

A.  Retired faculty who are re-employed for teaching or research can be re-appointed pending campus approval.  The Proposal for Re-Employment of a U of I Retiree must be completed and submitted to FAHR. If the faculty member is re-employed to teach or conduct research, it is appropriate to use the same title under which they retired.  If emeritus status was granted it should be included in the title. The use of adjunct or visiting is not appropriate.

Q.  Our unit will be hiring an international faculty member. Is the faculty member eligible for benefits?

A.  At the time of hire, faculty are considered either benefit eligible or non-benefit eligible depending on their visa status upon review and approval by the Office of International Services (OIS).  Faculty hired under an H1 visa status are considered benefit eligible and should be coded accordingly in Banner based on the FTE and period of service.  Faculty hired under an F or J visa are not considered benefit eligible for insurance purposes unless they have met the substantial presence test. This Internal Revenue Service (IRS) test is based on the number of days the employee has been present in the United States during the current year and the past two years. However, if the prospective employee has not met the conditions of the substantial presence test and their appointment is permanent and is otherwise defined as benefits eligible based on the FTE and period of service, then an insurance allowance of $2000, paid by the hiring department, must be added to the employee’s appointment. The employee will need to purchase independent coverage through an external vendor. In addition, the employee is eligible for 13 non-cumulative sick leave days prorated based on service.

Departments/units should instruct their new international faculty to immediately contact the Payroll Office regarding their taxation issues and to determine whether substantial presence has been met for those faculty who have been in the U.S. prior to their University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) appointment. 

Once an employee has met the requirements of the substantial presence test, the employee is considered benefits eligible and should receive health insurance coverage through the University.  The appointment information should be coded as benefit eligible and the insurance stipend should be removed from their appointment.

For more information on payment of international faculty, visit Payroll’s website on Payments to Foreign Nationals.

Compensation

Q.  What is the difference between pay dates and service dates for 9/12 employees.  Why are these dates not the same as regular 12 month service employees?

A.  A lot of confusion can occur between Pay Dates and Service Dates, especially when dealing with 9– or 10-month service employees paid over 12 months.  Service refers to the dates the employee actually works or provides service. Pay Dates are the corresponding dates for which the employee is paid for those services. The General Rules Concerning University Organization and Procedure require staff members rendering service during the academic year (08/16-05/15) to be compensated in twelve equal monthly installments (08/16-08/15).  Additionally the twelve monthly installments provides continuation of pay and benefits through the summer period.

Pay
08/16 to 02/15
02/16 to 08/15
Service
08/16 to 12/31
01/01 to 05/15

Fall Semester:
Spring Semester:

 

 

Q.   A faculty member is currently employed at 100% at UIC.   Another department wishes to pay the faculty member for some additional work this semester.

A.  Any payment for services beyond 100% requires prior campus approval regardless if the service performed is in the home unit or not. The requesting unit must submit for approval from Faculty Affairs a Request for Faculty Compensation for Services Beyond Full-Time prior to the services being rendered.

The exception to the above, as stated in the University of Illinois Statutes, permits service by faculty for a reasonable amount of instruction in continuing education and public service programs. This activity does not require prior Faculty Affairs approval however, the activity is generally coordinated through the Office of Continuing Education.  

Q.  A 9-month faculty member will be working over the summer on their administrative appointment only.  How should the monthly salary be calculated for the summer appointment?

A.  If the faculty member will be providing service only on the administrative appointment, the summer job must be added on a percent time appointment.  The monthly salary amount should be a1/9 rate of the annual academic year faculty and administrative salaries.  In addition, the summer administrative appointment should not exceed two months. 

Q.  A 9-month faculty member receives a percent time increase resulting in a higher salary effective the start of the spring semester.   What are the required steps?

A.  A percent time change other than at the beginning of the academic year (08/16) or the spring semester (01/01) will require pay adjustments on the previous salary and an adjusted monthly rate on the new salary. It is recommended that any change to percent time and salary for a 9-month faculty member be effective on one of the two dates noted in the previous sentence.  An effective date of January 1st will require the previous salary for fall semester to be paid through February 15 and the new salary for spring semester to be effective on February 16 with an end date of August 15. 

For example:  A percent time change from 50% to 100% for a 9-month faculty member will occur on 11/16.  The current 50% time monthly rate is $6,000. To determine the new monthly salary, take the current monthly salary (or current annual) divided by the current percent time multiplied by the new percent time ($6,000 /.50 ) * .100 =  $12,000).  Since the change is occurring on 11/16, the monthly rate will need to be adjusted to account for the service dates versus payroll dates. The adjusted monthly is determined by taking the $12,000 times 6 months (11/16-05/15) divided by 9 months (11/16-08/15) = $8,000. The $8,000 is the adjusted monthly rate and should be the rate submitted on the Personnel Information Transmittal Report (PITR).

Since the change is occurring on 11/16 and the employee has been paid at a 1/12th rate for the period August 16 through November 15, an additional job needs  to be added in order to pay the differential between the 1/12th and 1/9th rates for the initial 3 months. Need to see the math to believe?

Amount employee should receive for 3 months service at the 1/9th rate:
$54,000 divided by 9 months = $6,000 times 3 months = $18,000

Amount employee actually received for 3 months service at the 1/12th rate:
$54,000 divided by 12 months = $4,500 times 3 months = $13,500

Differential to be paid is $4,500 ($18,000 minus $13,500) for the 3-month period.

Leaves

Q.   A faculty member wishes to take a leave of absence without pay. Under what conditions can such a leave be granted and what are the implications?

A.  A leave of absence without pay, sometimes referred to as a personal leave, must be approved by the faculty member’s department head with the concurrence of the dean of the college for a period up to one year. Any requests for an extension beyond one year must have the Provost’s approval. The department head must provide justification in writing to the Provost for such an extension and the request must be endorsed by the dean. Leaves for longer periods or frequently recurring leaves would not seem to serve the best interests of the university. 

To continue to receive service and earnings credit for retirement purposes, an employee who is granted a leave of absence without pay must file an election to pay the employee contributions of 8 percent of salary, which are automatically deducted from the employee’s earnings when pay is being received.  The State Universities Retirement System (SURS) will notify the employee upon receipt of the leave of absence information from the campus.  The employee should follow up with SURS to make sure all appropriate documentation has been completed and is on record.  Sick leave and vacation (if applicable) does not accrue when an employee is on an unpaid leave of absence.   Additionally, the employee must complete a Leave of Absence Worksheet for insurance coverage.  See the Leave section on NESSIE or contact Benefits Services with questions. 

Q.  As a result of a recent injury, an Associate Professor is requesting disability leave since he/she is unable to perform the duties of their position. Is a SURS disability leave applicable in this case?

A.  A SURS disability leave would be applicable in this situation if the faculty member is a SURS eligible employee, has exhausted all of his/her university sick leave, and expects the disability to continue for more than 60 days. An application for SURS disability should be completed by the employee, the unit/college, and forwarded to FAHR. The application will be reviewed by FAHR for completeness and forwarded to SURS.

Q.  A faculty member wishes to take a sabbatical leave to conduct research at Jackson Labs in Maine. What needs to be done?

A.  Application for a sabbatical leave is an annual process that begins in November and ends with Board of Trustees (BOT) approval at the March BOT meeting.  In November, a communications packet is sent from the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs to the deans with the sabbatical leave policy and procedures and pertinent deadline dates. Sabbatical leaves approved in March begin in the next academic year. For some twelve-month faculty, the effective date of the sabbatical leave may begin earlier.

Benefits

Q.  A new faculty member is hired for the fall semester at 100% time only. Is the employee eligible for benefits?

A.  Yes, the employee is eligible for part-time health insurance. Central Management Services (CMS) considers this type of appointment equivalent to a 9-month appointment at 50% time, and therefore eligible for benefits. 

CMS has established three main criteria in order to meet insurance eligibility:

Formula = Length of Contract (months)   *  Employee FTE
                                    9 months

Employees can still waive the part-time coverage and have the 10 day window to do so. Employees do not need to show proof of insurance in this particular case. An added benefit is that employees can now have life insurance which is free to the employee. Employees would be waiving only dental and medical insurance.

Note: If the faculty member being hired is a permanent hire and is simply beginning employment on an initial partial year appointment, health insurance eligibility is full-time.

Q. An benefit eligible employee reduces their appointment to below 50% time? Is the employee still eligible for benefits?

A. No, the faculty member must be employed at 50% time to be eligible for health insurance.

Q:  A faculty member is approved for a sabbatical leave at less than full pay. How does "less than full pay" impact their SURS service credit/dollars and their insurance benefits?

A:  While on a sabbatical leave, the faculty member's Insurance benefits will continue in full regardless of the percent time pay. The faculty member will be responsible for their premium portion of the insurance benefits and this amount will continue to be deducted from the faculty member's monthly earnings. Since sabbatical leaves are at no less than 50% time pay for no longer than 9 months, SURS service and earnings credit will continue. However, for the service and earnings credit established to be retained, the faculty member must return to work upon expiration of the leave at a percentage of time equal to or greater than that immediately preceding the leave for at least eight (8) consecutive months or a period of time equal to the leave, whichever is less.

Separations

Q.  A faculty member on a 9-month contract retires at the end of the fall semester. How do we calculate the total salary due for the fall semester service when this faculty member has been paid at a 1/12 rate?

A.  Faculty members on a 9-month contract generally resign/retire either at the end of the academic year (8/15) or the end of either the fall (12/31) or spring (5/15) semester.  No adjusted calculations to the salary are required when the separation date is at the end of the academic year (8/15).  However, if the separation occurs on 12/31 or 5/15, a differential in salary based on the 1/12th versus 1/9th rate will be owed to the faculty member.  The differential pay (DP) is calculated using the following formula:  The monthly rate on the DP job =  (Annual ¸ 9 ) – (Annual ¸ 12).  For example:  Annual salary is $75,000 and separation date is December 31st.  The DP would be approximately $9,375.  The term “approximately” is used since the last month is a partial month and in a partial month, the pay dates versus the actual work days will vary year by year

Q.  What needs to be done when a faculty member resigns?

There are several steps that a Unit must undertake when a faculty member resigns from the university:   

Once the Payroll Office finalizes any remaining payment owed to the employee, the DART Separation form will be completed and separation information will be forwarded to SURS in order to process any SURS refund. It is imperative that the unit submits information in a timely manner. If the employee is overpaid, the employee must first pay back money to the University before any information can be forwarded to SURS.

Q.  What needs to be done when a faculty member retires?

A.  The same steps apply for a retirement as they do for a resignation. However, the employee should work with a State University Retirement System (SURS) counselor (800-ASK-SURS) well in advance of the retirement date. SURS will require additional information from both the faculty member and their employer in order to calculate the retirement annuity.   

 

Office of Faculty Affairs Human Resources, 1253 S Halsted Street, Suite 303 (M/C 095), Chicago, IL 60607-5023, (312) 355-2414