Leave and Holidays

The university recognizes that it is important for employees to have time away from work. Learn about leave accruals, rollovers, prorating, payouts, compensatory time, timesheets and leave records in the sections below.


Holiday 2018 2019
New Year's Day Monday, January 1 Tuesday, January 1
Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Day Monday, January 15 Monday, January 21
Memorial Day Monday, May 28 Monday, May 27
Independence Day Wednesday, July 4 Thursday, July 4
Labor Day Monday, September 3 Monday, September 2
Thanksgiving Wednesday-Friday November 21-23

Wednesday-Friday November 27-29

Winter Holiday Monday-Thursday December 24-27 Monday-Thursday December 23-26
 Extended Winter Break* Friday and Monday December 28 and 31

Friday, Monday, Tuesday December 27, 30, and 31

New - 2020 Holiday Schedule

*Extended Winter Break days are not paid holidays. Employees who do not work on Extended Winter Break days will use vacation leave, bonus leave, or accrued compensatory time. Alternatively some employees may choose to work, as coordinated with their supervisors, and some employees are required to work during that time.

Holiday Schedule Notes:

The State of North Carolina authorizes 12 holidays each year, three of which must fall at Christmas.  The campuses of the UNC system observe the same number of holidays as those provided to other state agencies; however, each campus sets its own specific holiday schedule based on institutional needs.  For the 2018 and 2019 holiday schedules at UNC Asheville:

  • The Good Friday holiday has been moved to the Thanksgiving holiday
  • The Veterans' Day holiday has been moved to the Winter Holiday



Vacation/Annual Leave

Vacation leave is accrued by eligible employees who are working, on paid leave, or on Workers' Compensation leave and meet one of the criteria below.

Employees in regular, also called permanent, staff positions ("permanent employees") regularly scheduled to work at least 20 or more hours per week, and who are in pay status for at least one-half of the days in a month, are eligible to earn vacation leave. Full-time staff (40 hours per week) earn vacation and sick leave according to the charts below. Staff who work less than 40 hours per week earn leave on a pro-rated basis according to the number of scheduled work hours each week.   Note:  Leave is accrued on a monthly basis.

SHRA Vacation Leave Accrual Rates

Years of Service Maximum Annual Accrual Monthly Accrual Rate
0-5 112 hours 9 hrs. & 20 min.
5-10 136 hours 11 hrs. & 20 min.
10-15 160 hours 13 hrs. & 20 min.
15-20 184 hours 15 hrs. & 20 min.
20+ 208 hours 17 hrs. & 20 min.








EHRA Annual (Vacation) Leave Accrual Rates

Fulltime SAAO Tier I employees are eligible for 26 days per year (accrued on a monthly basis). The amount of annual leave is adjusted proportionately for part-time employees in covered positions who work half-time (50% FTE) or more.

Full-time SAAO Tier II and Instructional/Research/Public Service (IRPS) employees are eligible for 24 days per year (accrued on a monthly basis). The amount of annual leave is adjusted proportionately for part-time employees in covered positions who work half-time (50% FTE) or more.

Prorated Vacation Leave Accrual Rates for SHRA and EHRA Staff


Vacation Leave Approval

Employees should submit a request for vacation leave to their supervisor; employee preference should be considered and schedules worked out bearing in mind individual departmental needs.

How Can I Use Vacation Leave?

Vacation leave may be used for a variety of circumstances.

  • Vacation
  • Other periods of absence for personal reasons
  • Absences due to adverse weather conditions
  • Personal illness (in lieu of sick leave)
  • Illness in the immediate family
  • Time lost for late reporting; however, deductions should be made from the employee’s pay where excessive tardiness or absenteeism occurs.
  • Donations to an employee who is an approved voluntary shared leave recipient.

Note: Although approval of the use of vacation leave is discretionary, requests by an employee to use vacation leave for cultural and/or ethnic-related events should be granted if the employee has accrued vacation leave and the granting of the leave will not result in undue hardship on the department or its employees.

Can I Carry Over Vacation Leave?

On December 31 of each year, accumulated vacation leave time over 240 hours (pro-rated for part-time employees) is converted to sick leave so that only 240 hours are carried forward to January 1 of the next calendar year. 

Is There an Vacation Leave Payout?

If the employee separates from service due to resignation, dismissal, reduction in force, or death, accumulated vacation/annual leave will be paid in a lump sum. However, payment for accumulated leave cannot exceed 240 hours (pro-rated for part-time employees).

If an employee separates and is overdrawn on leave, it will be necessary to make deductions from the final salary check.

Note: There are special payout provisions for EHRA employees with less than 2 years of service. See UNC Policies 300.1.1 and 300.2.1 for more details.

Sick Leave

Sick leave provides time for an employee to recover from personal illness, injury, or disability that prevents performance of usual duties. 

Full-time and part-time (20 hours or .5 FTE per week or more) employees in permanent SHRA (Subject to the State Human Resources Act) staff positions, including those in time-limited and probationary appointments, are eligible to accrue sick leave.

EHRA (Exempt from the Human Resources Act) staff with appointments that are .5 FTE or greater are subject to the same policies concerning sick leave as SHRA staff.

Type of Appointment Accrual Rate
Sick Leave Accrual Rates
Full-time 8 hours/month Permanent, probationary, trainee, or time-limited 8 hours per month (96 hours per year)
Part-time (half time or more) Permanent, probationary, trainee, or time-limited Prorated Percentage of full-time amount
Temporary, intermittent, or part-time (less than half-time) None








Sick Leave accumulates indefinitely.

Note: Vacation leave in excess of 6 weeks (240 hours, prorated for part-time employees) on December 31 of each year will be converted to sick leave. At retirement a member of the Teachers and State Employees Retirement System (TSERS) with an earned sick leave balance receives an additional month of service credit for each 20 days or portion thereof.  The additional service credit increases the retirement benefit of the retiree.

Advancement of Sick Leave

The department head may advance sick leave not to exceed the amount that the employee can accumulate during the current calendar year.

Using Sick Leave

Sick leave may be used for:

  • Illness or injury,
  • Medical appointments,
  • Temporary disability due to childbirth
  • Care for member of immediate family (including care for mother during temporary disability)
  • Death in immediate family
  • Donations to a member of the immediate family and non-family members who are approved to receive voluntary shared leave.
  • Adoption of a child, limited to a maximum of 30 days for each parent (which is equivalent to a biological mother’s average period of disability)

Note: This is interpreted to mean at the time of physical possession of the child and have either adopted or are in the process of adoption.

Using Sick Leave for Family Members

Employees can donate sick leave to a member of their immediate family who is an approved Voluntary Shared Leave recipient, and may donate up to 5 days to a nonfamily member.  See the Sick Leave Policy for guidelines and additional limitations on donating leave.

To avoid abuse of sick leave privileges, a statement other acceptable proof may be required. Evidence to support leave for adoption-related purposes may be required.


  • If an employee does not have sufficient leave to cover a prolonged illness (of self or to care for a parent, child, spouse, or dependent living in the household who has a prolonged illness), the employee may qualify to receive Voluntary Shared Leave.
  • Employees cannot have negative leave balances at the end of the calendar year (i.e., December 31). 


Other Leave

Leave Programs Available

In addition to holidays, vacation and sick leave, various other leave options are available to eligible employees including Family and Medical Leave, Family Illness Leave, Community Service Leave, Civil Leave, Military Leave, and Voluntary Shared Leave. For more information http://hr.unca.edu/policies.

Special Bonus Leave Frequently Asked Questions - August 2017


Compensatory Time Off / Overtime

New policies were recently approved, with an effective date of January 1, 2018:

Other Resources:



The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), also referred to as the federal Wage and Hour Law, regulates minimum wage, overtime, equal pay, recordkeeping, and child labor. Under the FLSA, positions are classified as either exempt or nonexempt from certain provisions, such as minimum wage, overtime, and recordkeeping.

Employees whose positions are designated as FLSA Nonexempt under the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) must record all hours worked and must receive extra compensation for hours worked in excess of their regular schedule. It is State and University policy to provide compensatory time off in lieu of monetary compensation unless an exception is approved. Employees in Nonexempt positions are required to maintain a timesheet to track hours worked and leave taken in a workweek. The Overtime and Compensatory Time Off Policy for FLSA Nonexempt Employees provides more details.

The FLSA does not require employers to provide compensation for extra hours worked to employees in positions designated as FLSA Exempt.  However, UNC Asheville seeks to provide the opportunity for employees in exempt positions to balance their professional and personal commitments. See the Compensatory Time Policy for SHRA Exempt Employees Policy and the Expectations for Exempt Employees Policy for more details.

Timesheets and Leave Reports

Resources for Employees Entering Leave

SmartTime Examples - for FLSA Nonexempt Employees

Leave Reporting Examples - for FLSA Exempt Employees