4.6 Military Leaves

This policy was last updated January 1, 2021. See the update history page for more information.

Employees who serve in the Armed Services are entitled to certain paid and unpaid leaves as detailed below.  These leaves include:

  • Military Training Duty Leave
  • Participation in Veterans’ Day or Memorial Day Exercises
  • National Guard and Civil Defense Call-Up
  • Job Protection for Training and Service in the Uniformed Services 

In addition, employees with family members who are currently or were formerly in the  Armed Services may be eligible for  partially paid leaves for certain Qualifying Exigencies or to care for the injured service member. Section 4.4.3. 

4.6.1 Military Training Duty Leave

Employees who participate in annual military training duty as members of the Armed Forces Reserve or National Guard, and who have completed one year of continuous service at the Institute at the time they report for such duty, are granted a military pay differential for a period of up to two weeks annually.

The pay differential is the amount, if any, by which the employee's normal base pay for the two-week period exceeds any pay received for such military training duty for the same period, including all military pay except subsistence allowance (including "quarters allowance") and travel allowance. Employees may not receive vacation pay and military pay differential for the same two-week period. Any period of time spent in military training in excess of the two-week period must be taken as vacation time or as leave without pay.

Upon return from military training duty, employees submit to their supervisors a copy of their original duty orders and a certified statement of their military pay and allowances for the two-week period. Any adjustments in salary will be reflected in a subsequent paycheck, after these documents are forwarded to the HR/Payroll Office.

4.6.2 Participation in Veterans' Day or Memorial Day Exercises

Any employee who is a veteran of the United States Armed Forces (including certain full-time National Guard service), and who wishes to participate in a Veterans' Day or Memorial Day exercise, parade or service in their community of residence on a date that he or she is scheduled to work will be given sufficient time off to do so. If the Veterans’ Day exercise falls on November 11, the employee will be paid holiday time for the period of absence. If the Memorial Day exercise falls on the date that MIT celebrates Memorial Day, the employee will similarly be paid holiday time for that period of absence. Otherwise, the period of absence will be unpaid or, if the employee chooses, paid from any accrued vacation or personal time.

The Institute may deny such a request if the employee’s services are essential and critical to the public health or safety and are determined by the Institute to be essential to the safety and security of MIT and its property.

4.6.3 National Guard and Civil Defense Call-Up

Employees who serve as members of National Guard or Civil Defense units who are called in cases of local alerts or emergencies may be excused from work on a leave without pay basis.

4.6.4 Job Protection for Training and Service in the Uniformed Services

The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) provides broad protection to the job and seniority rights of employees who leave their employment for certain periods of federal military service or training. The period of protection is ordinarily five years from the date of entrance into the uniformed service, but may be extended in certain limited circumstances. Service members are permitted to use any accrued vacation leave during a qualifying USERRA leave, but are not required to do so.

The principal protection afforded the individual is the right of re-employment in the "escalator position," which is the job he or she would have attained had they not been absent for military service or training.  The service member may be placed in an alternative position if they cannot qualify for the "escalator position" with appropriate training.  

To apply for reemployment, the individual typically must (a) submit a timely application for reemployment (the time periods are based on the amount of time spent on leave), (b) demonstrate that they have not exceeded the five-year service limitation (or that they are entitled to longer periods of leave), and (c) demonstrate that the reason for separation from service was not dishonorable or otherwise disqualifying.  MIT may request additional documentation as allowed by federal law. 

Determinations of the terms and conditions of re-employment (rate of pay, seniority status where appropriate, length of service for benefits eligibility purposes, etc.) is a complex matter and will be discussed with the supervisor by the appropriate Human Resources Officer on a case-by-case basis. Generally, the individual must be treated as having been on leave of absence and given credit for military service time in computing service for seniority and benefit plan purposes.