Termination and Severance Policy



Policy Statement

The University maintains standards of conduct, work rules, and performance expectations that apply to staff employees.

The violation of certain standards may result in immediate suspension or dismissal. These include, but are not limited to: fighting, refusing to perform a reasonable work assignment, reporting to work under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs, theft or misuse of University funds or property (including computer data and software), unauthorized attempts to access or copy computerized data or software, unlawful photocopying of copyrighted materials, breach of software confidentiality and ownership agreements, falsification of University forms or documents, gambling and engaging in conduct which threatens the safety of others.

In cases where the University deems the situation does not warrant immediate suspension or dismissal, the University may utilize a variety of forms of progressive discipline to address conduct and performance issues. Staff employees who fail to address these issues after progressive discipline is imposed may be terminated for cause.

In the case of separation where a benefits eligible staff employee has been involuntarily terminated by the University without cause, including but not limited to layoff, position restructure, and position elimination, one week notice is given to a benefits eligible staff employee who has at least one month and up to three months of service, and two pay periods notice (two weeks for non-exempt; one month for exempt) is given to a benefits eligible staff employee who has more than three months of service. In unusual circumstances, pay may be given to a benefits eligible staff employee in lieu of notice, subject to applicable withholdings and deductions for payroll tax purposes. No contributions to the University’s retirement plans will be made with respect to such payments. Upon separation or retirement, a benefits eligible staff employee will not receive payment for any unused paid time off including vacation and sick time.

Benefits eligible staff employees who separate or retire voluntarily from the University are expected to provide their supervisor with at least two pay periods notice (two weeks for a non-exempt employee; one month for an exempt employee). It is also expected that employees do not use vacation time as part of the notice period prior to their voluntary separation or retirement date. Special requests for vacation time to be used during an employee’s notice period should be submitted for consideration to the dean or senior vice president (or their delegate) of the school, college or administrative unit.

Any notice or pay provided pursuant to this policy shall not duplicate any other notice or pay that the University provides to an employee as a result of termination of employment. If an employee is provided any other notice or pay as a result of a termination of employment (e.g., any separation or termination notice or pay provided as a result of a layoff or other termination of employment that is pursuant to a University-approved written arrangement or agreement that is separate from this policy), any notice or pay that the employee otherwise would have been eligible for under this policy shall be reduced by the amount of such other University notice or pay provided.

Staff employees terminated for cause are not eligible to receive notice or severance pay. Cause shall be defined as termination for misconduct or performance reasons as determined by the University in its sole discretion. The right of staff employees to receive other benefits upon termination of employment (e.g., COBRA health continuation coverage) will be governed by the terms of the applicable employee benefit plans.

In all cases of termination, the supervisor must consult with the Office of Human Resources before taking action to terminate.

Policy Administration

Procedures and Related Information

Date: April 2005
Amended: December 2020