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Don't Lose What You've Earned -- Donate It

National Guard Bureau

WASHINGTON, Dec. 3, 1998 – Federal employees facing the loss of their excess annual leave Jan. 2 can donate it instead and make someone's holiday a little brighter.

All federal agencies have a Donor Leave Program that helps employees who don't have enough annual or sick leave to cover long absences such as for a medical or family emergency, surgical recovery, illness, a death in the family or birth of a child. The worker's personnel shop verifies eligibility -- one general measure is whether the absence would cause an employee to go without pay for at least 80 hours.

Normally, federal employees can't carry over more than 240 hours of annual leave into a new leave year, which starts Jan. 2 in 1999. They forfeit excesses without any form of credit -- DoD employees gave up 473,578 hours in 1997, according to the Office of Personnel Management. At middle GS-7 pay of $15 per hour, that lost leave would have been worth over $7.1 million in donations.

So, a holiday gift, good deed and alternative to forfeiting leave is to give it to a co-worker or someone else in need. DoD employees can donate leave to a beneficiary by name or to an agency pool that divvies the gifts to eligibles. To make a donation, fill out a Leave Recipient Application and give it to your supervisor. Call or visit your personnel office for general and agency donation rules.

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