MILITARY LEAVE POLICY AND PROCEDURE
(December 20, 2018)
Odyssey is committed to protecting the job rights of employees absent on military leave. In accordance with applicable law, it is the company’s policy that no employee or prospective employee will be subjected to any form of discrimination on the basis of that person's membership in or obligation to perform service for any of the Uniformed Services of the United States. Specifically, no person will be denied employment, reemployment, promotion, or other benefit of employment on the basis of such membership. Furthermore, no Odyssey employee will be subjected to retaliation or adverse employment action because such person has exercised his or her rights under applicable law or this policy. If any employee believes that they have been subjected to discrimination in violation of this policy, the employee should immediately contact their supervisor, Team Member Services (TMS) (email@example.com or 781-327-5867), or the Manager of Labor and Employment Law Compliance (781-521-0092) for assistance.
Odyssey’s military leave policy applies to employees who perform duty, voluntarily or involuntarily, in the uniformed services, which include the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, Army National Guard, Air National Guard and Public Health Service commissioned corps, as well as the reserve components of each of these services. Odyssey Employees taking part in a variety of military duties are eligible for benefits under this policy. Such military duties include leaves of absence taken for annual training, periods of active military service, and funeral honors duty, as well as time spent for medical examinations to determine fitness to perform such service. Subject to certain exceptions under the applicable laws, these benefits are generally limited to five years of cumulative military leave of absence.
Procedures for Military Leave of Absence
Unless military necessity prevents it, or is otherwise impossible or unreasonable, an employee is required to provide Odyssey with written notice of the need for military leave as far in advance as is reasonable under the circumstances pursuant to the procedure below.
1. To request a military leave of absence - You must create an Odyssey HelpDesk ticket and attach a copy of your military orders. After submission of your HelpDesk ticket, you will receive a response with instructions and a link to log into the LearnUpon tutorial to complete and submit your Military Leave of Absence form. Your Military Leave of Absence Form must contain a “start” and “end” date for your military leave of absence (these dates are included on your military orders).
2. Returning to work after military leave - After completion of your military service, you are required, within the time limits set forth below, to promptly return to work. Please notify Odyssey’s TMS, through submission of a Helpdesk ticket, of your intent to return to work and the date of your return to work. You will then receive an email response from TMS with a link to the Return from Military Leave form to be completed. If you do not give Odyssey timely notice of your intent to return to work or do not return to work within the time limits specified below, your continued employment will be subject to Odyssey’s rules governing unexcused absences. If applicable, you will be asked to upload a copy of your last military Leave and Earnings Statement.
3. Time limits for returning to work
A. Service of 1 to 30 days - If your military service was less than 31 days, you must report back to work not later than the beginning of the first regularly scheduled work period on the first full calendar day following completion of service and the expiration of eight hours (i.e., an 8-hour "rest period"). Your time limit for returning to work may be "as soon as possible" if reporting on the first regularly scheduled work period is impossible or unreasonable through no fault of your own.
B. Service of 31 to 180 days - If your military service was more than 30 days but less than 181 days, you must submit a written notification of your intent to return to work (through the procedure set forth above) not later than 14 days following completion of military service. Odyssey may require you to provide documentation that your discharge from military service was (1) not disqualifying (i.e. was under honorable conditions), and (2) the leave has not exceeded five years of cumulative military leave of absence while employed with Odyssey.
C. Service of more than 180 days - If your military service was more than 180 days, you must submit a written notification of your intent to return to work (through the procedure set forth above) not later than 90 days from completion of military service. Odyssey may require you to provide documentation that (1) your discharge from military service was not disqualifying (i.e. was under honorable conditions), and (2) the leave has not exceeded five years of cumulative military leave of absence while employed with Odyssey.
D. Notice by disabled persons - If you are hospitalized for or convalescing from injuries incurred in or aggravated by military service, you must submit a written notification of your intent to return to work (through the procedure set forth above) not later than two (2) years following recovery from such injuries.
Odyssey is not obligated to reinstate an employee as described above if any of the following conditions exist:
1. Odyssey’s circumstances have changed such that reemployment is impossible or unreasonable.
2. Reemployment would pose an undue hardship upon Odyssey.
3. The employee's employment prior to the military service was merely for a brief, non-recurrent period and there was no reasonable expectation that the employment would have continued indefinitely or for a significant period.
4. The employee did not receive an honorable discharge from military service.
If an employee is absent from work due to military service, benefits will continue as follows:
1. Health Coverage
(a.) For employees on military leave for less than 31 days, Odyssey and the employee will continue to pay their normal shares of health care coverage. The employee must pay, per pay period, the premium normally paid as an active employee. If you did not pay your health care coverage premium while on military leave for less than 31 days, when you return to work you will be required to reimburse the company through future payroll deductions for your share of benefit premiums paid on your behalf during your leave. The repayment deductions shall be no greater than double the biweekly premium.
(b.) Employees on extended military leave (periods exceeding 31 days) may elect to continue group health insurance coverage for the employee and covered dependents. After the initial 31 day period, if you choose to continue coverage, you may either elect to continue group health insurance (medical, dental and/or vision) for the employee and covered dependents up to 24 months based on the premium normally paid as an active employee. Or as an alternative, you can select to continue coverage at 102% of the overall (both employer and employee) premium rate through COBRA. In both instances, the employee is required to make payments in a timely manner to continue coverage. Employees should contact TMS for more information on payment options (firstname.lastname@example.org or 781-327-5867).
2. Group term life/AD&D - Will terminate the day the employee becomes active military. (Group term life/AD&D provided by the company is not affected for employees performing their two (2) weeks of annual military training). Group term life may be converted to an individual whole life policy. To exercise this option, employees must submit a written application and the first premium payment within 31 days immediately following the termination of coverage. Please contact TMS for more information and the application.
3. Company provided group short and long term disability insurance - Will terminate the day the employee becomes active military.
4. Personal Time Off (PTO) - Employees do not accrue PTO while on military leave of absence status.
5. With respect to the company’s retirement plan, Odyssey will not contribute to an employee’s Fidelity 401(k) account while they are on extended military leave not earning wages through Odyssey. [If you are an Odyssey 401(k) plan participant with an outstanding plan loan, please contact TMS for guidance (email@example.com or 781-327-5867) on the rights and obligations pertaining to suspending your loan repayments while performing military service.]
6. All voluntary supplemental life/AD&D insurance will terminate the day the employee becomes active military. (Voluntary supplemental life/AD&D is not affected for employees performing their two (2) weeks of annual military training.) Voluntary life insurance benefits may be converted to an individual whole life policy or ported to a term life policy as applicable. To exercise either of these options, employees and/or their dependents must submit a written application and the first premium payment within 31 days immediately following the termination of coverage. Please contact TMS for more information and the application.
7. Odyssey provides qualified employees with 10 days (80 hours) per calendar year of differential pay between their military pay and allowances and Odyssey salary, if the Odyssey salary is higher than their total military pay and allowances. In order to receive the pay differential, employees must submit a request for pay differential through TMS (firstname.lastname@example.org) along with a copy of their military Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) for the relevant period of military service. Once an employee exhausts their 10 days of differential pay, they have the option of voluntarily using paid time off (PTO) for additional paid military leave. Additionally, with regard to Exempt employees (as defined in the Employee Handbook, Section 4.4), and pursuant to federal law and regulations, Odyssey will offset any amount received for temporary military pay for a particular week against the salary due for that particular week if the employee worked any days during that particular week. For example, if an Exempt employee works on Monday and Tuesday of a particular week but performs temporary military duty pursuant to military orders on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of that same week, Odyssey will require submission of an LES and will offset the Odyssey salary due for that particular week by the total amount of military pay received. An Exempt employee will not be paid for any workweek during which he or she performs no work due to military leave; for example when an employee is on temporary leave for military duty for the entire workweek.
8. Flexible spending accounts. Employees enrolled in FSA accounts should know that the Heroes Earnings Assistance and Relief Tax (HEART) Act of 2008 generally waives the "use it or lose it" rule that applies to health care flexible spending accounts, allowing military reservists called to active duty to receive distributions from unused funds without penalty.
General Benefits Upon Return from Military Leave
Employees returning from military leave will receive seniority and other benefits determined by seniority that the employee had at the beginning of the military leave, plus any additional seniority and benefits the employee would have attained, with reasonable certainty, had the individual remained continuously employed. An employee’s time spent on active military duty will be counted toward their eligibility for FMLA leave once they return to their job at Odyssey. Additionally, upon returning from military leave, a covered employee will not be discharged except for cause for up to one year following reemployment, unless Odyssey’s circumstances have changed such that discharge is unavoidable through layoffs resulting from Odyssey not winning a recompete effort, a stop work order issued by the federal government, or other similar circumstances beyond the control of Odyssey that result in the employee’s discharge.