BUREAU OF HUMAN RESOURCES
HUMAN RESOURCES POLICY AND PRACTICES MANUAL
12.4 MILITARY LEAVE
Reference Civil Service Rules, Ch. 11, Sec. 2, E. Employer requirements and employee rights associated with leave for military service are found in the federal Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (U.S. Code Title 38, Ch. 43), and various Maine statutes. It is also important to consult the Military Leave articles of the collective bargaining agreements.
State employees must be granted military leave to enter military service or participate in training, whether voluntarily or involuntarily, in peacetime or in wartime. The type and duration of military duty will determine whether the employee remains in pay status.
MILITARY LEAVE WITH PAY Employees (including employees who hold acting capacity and project appointments) are allowed up to 17 work days in each calendar year without loss of pay or benefits when engaged in any form of military duty.
MILITARY LEAVE WITHOUT PAY When military service exceeds the 17 work days authorized for military leave with pay, the employee must be placed on unpaid military leave. Employees may use, but are not required to use, accrued vacation, compensatory, or personal leave when entering unpaid military service. Provisions for the optional use of accrued vacation, compensatory, or personal leave also apply to employees who are called to active state duty by the Governor.
RE-EMPLOYMENT: The guiding principle of the USERRA and Maine law is that an employee performing military service is not to suffer any detriment in employment and should be treated as if he or she had not left employment. State employees who enter military service retain reemployment rights under both the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 and Maine law. Exceptions are narrowly restricted to persons who hold temporary, non-recurrent employment. Although certain criteria are required for an employee to exercise his or her reemployment rights, denial of reemployment to a returning service member should be considered an extraordinary situation. Human resource professionals should be consulted if any adverse action is contemplated.
An employee who enters military service on a short-term basis would generally be returned to the position that he or she left. Employees who enter military service on a long-term basis would be returned to the position that he or she left or be returned to a position of like status and pay for which he or she is qualified. Agency human resource representatives should be consulted if denial of reemployment for any reason is contemplated.
Upon the completion of service (less than 31 days, including weekend drills) employees are also entitled to reasonable time for return travel, and an eight-hour period of rest, before returning to work. The allotted time to apply for reemployment increases incrementally, depending upon the length of service. Departmental human resource representatives should be consulted in unusual situations.