Earned Sick Leave

Hackensack Meridian Health provides team members with Earned Sick Leave (ESL) benefits for a variety of reasons, outlined below. Team members are eligible for ESL if they are full-time, part-time or temporary status. Per diem team members who are not licensed health care professionals are also eligible. Please see our Earned Sick Leave policy on PolicyStat for full eligibility, accrual and utilization details.

Reasons for taking time off under ESL:

Please note, while NJ state law ensures that team members are allowed to take time for the following reasons, it does not dictate how they must be paid. (And, therefore, time off for these reasons may not always be drawn from a team member’s ESL bank.) Because HMH’s PTO policy is more generous than what is required by law (and allows team members to accrue greater than the minimum number of hours that the law requires), it is HMH’s policy, under
certain circumstances, for team members to draw from their PTO balance, if available, before drawing from their ESL bank.

  • Diagnosis, care, treatment of, or recovery from a mental or physical illness, injury or other adverse health condition, or for preventive medical care – personal or family member
  • Medical, legal or counseling services needed as a result of domestic or sexual violence – personal or family member
  • Closure of workplace or school/daycare by order of a public official or issuance by a public health authority
  • Attending a school-related conference, meeting, function or other event requested or required by a school administrator, teacher, or other professional staff member responsible for your child’s education
  • Attending a meeting regarding care in connection with your child’s health condition or disability

There are various reasons for which a team member may be eligible to take ESL. However, depending on the reason, the process to request ESL – and how a team member will be paid – may vary. Please review the four ESL Groups below to find the process that matches your reason.

ESL Group I: School Closures, Meetings, Illness (3 Days or Less)

WHY AM I REQUESTING ESL?

  • Closure of workplace or school/daycare by order of a public official or issuance by a public health authority (e.g., closures for a health epidemic like a measles outbreak)
  • Attending a school-related conference, meeting, function or other event requested or required by a school administrator, teacher, or other professional staff member responsible for your child’s education
  • Attending a meeting regarding care in connection with your child’s health condition or disability
  • Diagnosis, care, treatment of, or recovery from a mental or physical illness, injury or other adverse health condition, or for preventive medical care – personal or family member – 3 consecutive days or less

WHO DO I CONTACT AND WHEN?

Notify your leader at least seven days in advance, if possible.

WHICH BANK WILL IT COME FROM?

This will vary for each team member depending on your time bank balances, but in general, time will cascade as follows:

PTO True Balance* → PTO Yet To Earn → PTO Drawdown Bank → ESL Carryover Balance →  ESL Current Balance

*When available, FT Status Bank will be the first PTO bank to be drawn from.

HOW WILL I BE PAID?

Payment will be reflected in your HMH paycheck, depending on available balances in the banks referenced above.

ESL Group II: Personal/Family Member Disability/Illness (4 Days or More), Intermittent Absences for Treatment

WHY AM I REQUESTING ESL?

  • Diagnosis, care, treatment of, or recovery from a mental or physical illness, injury or other adverse health condition, or for preventive medical care – personal or family member – 4 consecutive days or more
  • Intermittent absences required for special treatment of chronic illness (e.g., dialysis, chemotherapy)
  • Temporary disability

WHO DO I CONTACT AND WHEN?

  1. Notify your leader of your intent to take a leave.
  2. Call The Hartford at 1-888-924-4155 or log in/create an account at MyBenefits.TheHartford.com to submit your request for leave. You must call 30 days in advance of the leave, if possible. If the leave is unexpected, you should call the day you learn of the need for leave or the following business day.

See Personal Disability/Family Member Disability Reference Guides for full details

WHICH BANK WILL IT COME FROM?

Depends on your time bank balances and the length and type of the leave.

See Personal Disability/Family Member Disability Reference Guides for full details

HOW WILL I BE PAID?

ESL time, PTO time and time covered by the HMH “Wrap” payment will be reflected in your HMH paycheck. Short Term Disability time covered by The Hartford plan will be paid directly by The Hartford in accordance with the team member’s designated, preferred payment method.

ESL Group III: (1-3 Days Absence Only) Inpatient Hospital Stays, Same-Day Surgeries, Procedures Under Conscious Sedation (Day 1 ESL Exceptions)

WHY AM I REQUESTING ESL?

  • Inpatient hospital stay (1-3 days absence only)
  • Same-day surgery (including post-operative recovery time) (1-3 days absence only)
  • Procedures under conscious sedation (e.g., colonoscopy) (1-3 days absence only)

WHO DO I CONTACT AND WHEN?

  1. Notify your leader when you are requesting 1-3 days of ESL for your own medical condition/needs (when foreseeable).
  2. Obtain a Health Care Provider’s Certification “note” from your physician/health care provider immediately after the absence.
  3. Submit the certification along with a completed Determination of Eligibility for Payment from ESL Bank on Day 1 of Absence Due to Own Disability or Illness (Absence of 3 Days or Less) form via fax to your site’s Occupational Health team within 30 days of your treatment/care. Please note: If you are unsure which team to submit to, please ask your leader or HR representative. Once approved, the Occupational Health team will notify the Benefits team. The Benefits team will recode the absence so it draws from the ESL bank. Team members will be notified when a leave request has been approved/denied via email.

If you have questions about the status of your ESL Group III eligibility or payment, please send an email to HMHESL@hmhn.org.

WHICH BANK WILL IT COME FROM?

ESL Carryover Balance → ESL Current Balance → Historic Sick Bank/HIB → PTO True Balance* → PTO Yet To Earn → PTO Drawdown Bank

*When available, FT status bank will be the first PTO bank to be drawn from.

HOW WILL I BE PAID?

Payment will be reflected in your HMH paycheck, depending on available balances in the banks referenced above.

Please note: These requests can take up to several weeks to process, depending on current volume. Because of this, time may initially be drawn from your PTO bank. However, once your request is approved and processed, your PTO time will be credited back and that time will be drawn from your ESL bank.

ESL Group IV: Workers’ Compensation

WHY AM I REQUESTING ESL?

  • Workers’ Compensation

WHO DO I CONTACT AND WHEN?

  1. Notify your leader at the time the incident occurs. Please note: Failure to do this immediately following the incident may impact your receiving the benefit.
  2. Complete ONElink (or appropriate event report, according to your entity).
  3. Contact your local Occupational Health office at the time of the incident. If emergency care is required, seek care at an HMH Emergency Department.

WHICH BANK WILL IT COME FROM?

This will vary for each team member, depending on your time bank balances.

HOW WILL I BE PAID?

If the leave is 7 days or less, payment will be reflected in your HMH paycheck, depending on available time in the banks referenced above. If the leave is 8 days or more, 70% of payment will come in a separate check from the Workers’ Compensation Program Administrator. “The Wrap” (the difference between the NJ state cap of $945 and your true 70% of pay), if applicable, and 30% of payment will be reflected in your HMH paycheck, depending on your time bank balances.

I am returning to work from a workers’ compensation leave of absence. What do I need to do?

  1. Contact your local Occupational Health office regarding your return to work.
  2. Call your leader to confirm your return to work schedule.
  3. Email the LOA Accommodations team at HMHRTW@hmhn.org or fax 1-848-245-8453 to notify them of your return to work date and provide a contact number. The LOA Accommodations team will then update your status in MyWay-PeopleSoft and confirm your return to work date with your leader. Please note: Failure to submit this information to the LOA Accommodations team as far in advance of your planned return as possible could result in a delay in pay and system access.
  4. Occupational Health will notify The Hartford of your clearance to return to work.

Note: A team member who is cleared to return to work with restrictions on modified duty will be provided modified duty, if available. Generally, modified duty will end at maximum medical improvement or the expiration of 12 weeks, whichever is earlier. HMH does not have permanent modified/light duty positions. Team members receiving workers’ compensation benefits who are determined to be physically able to return to work and refuse to return to work will be terminated from employment, unless they are eligible and approved for additional leave under the FMLA, ADA or other applicable law. Moreover, they will not be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits beyond the date of termination. If the team member is not eligible for any of the foregoing, their position may be posted and filled.

Contact Information

Other Types of Leave

Personal Disability

Family Member Disability

Parental Leave

Military Leave

COPYRIGHT © 2020 HACKENSACK MERIDIAN HEALTH. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Subject to union negotiations. We are required by law to deal with the unions on behalf of unionized team members, and we will continue to do so. We will only negotiate with the unions, not with individual unionized team members.
X