Separations Policy

Effective Date

June 12, 2017

Last Revision Date

June, 2023 

Responsible Party

Human Resources

Scope

All staff  

Purpose 

Marymount University (“University”) recognizes that an employee may separate from active university employment for a variety of reasons which may be broadly categorized as either voluntary or involuntary in nature.   

Policy Statement

Virginia is a “right to work state” and therefore staff members are at-will, and their employment can be terminated at any time with or without notice or cause.  This Policy does not create a contract implied or expressed, with any staff members, who are employees at will. Faculty will be subject to employment action for non-award of tenure as expressed in Section 16 of the Faculty Handbook.

1.0 Voluntary Separation

1.1 In cases of voluntary resignation or retirement, notice equivalent to the length of one pay period is normally expected, longer notice is preferred for Management positions. A letter of resignation must be sent to the supervisor and uploaded with the termination submission in the Workday system.  

1.2  During this period, the employee is provided the opportunity to conduct an in-person exit interview with Human Resources or complete an online exit survey that is sent automatically from Workday upon resignation. 

1.3  Salary will be paid through the effective date of the resignation or retirement. Payment will be made for annual Vacation Leave or Paid Time Off (PTO), accrued and not used, as of the effective date of separation up to a maximum of 80 hours. 

1.4  Job abandonment is defined as three or more consecutive days of absence from work without notice of intent to return having been provided to the immediate supervisor. It may be considered a voluntary separation. 

1.5  The University reserves the right to accept the employee’s notice of separation as effective on the day it is given to the employee’s supervisor or any day thereafter.

2.0 Death

2.1  In case of the death of an employee, the employee’s supervisor should contact Human Resources.

2.2 Human Resources will notify the life insurance and retirement vendor to initiate those benefits. Payroll will be notified and the final check will be deposited as it was set up at the time of death.

3.0  Separation during the Probationary Period

3.1  During the probationary period, an employee may be removed from their position at any time, for any reason, and without prior notice. 

3.2  During a probationary period, an employee removed from a position will receive a two-week notice of termination or pay in lieu of notice with immediate termination.

3.3  Any manager wishing to discharge an employee during their probationary period shall consult with Human Resources at least three weeks prior to the end of the employee’s probationary period. Human Resources will advise as to the proper steps to follow and, if the separation follows policy, approve the action. 

3.4  Termination during the probationary period may not be appealed or grieved.

4.0  Layoff

4.1  As a result of an official reorganization or permanent or temporary reduction in the workforce approved by the president. The university will give written notice at least thirty days prior to the effective date of separation, with payment of salary through the notice period and with further payment of any annual leave accrued as of the separation date.

4.2  The university will attempt, where possible, to place individuals into other positions for which they may be qualified and, where this is not possible, to provide any possible advice and information to laid off employees. For full-time faculty, the retrenchment process is outlined in the Faculty Handbook.

4.3  The university makes no provision for seniority or other types of “bumping.”  Employees who are subject to layoff are eligible to apply for vacant university positions for which they are qualified, but the former salary is not guaranteed in the new position. 

5.0  Involuntary Separation for Cause

5.1 After an employee’s probationary period has been completed, involuntary separation for cause may be necessary. An involuntary separation for cause includes for example: the inability, failure, or refusal of the employee to maintain satisfactory performance of the responsibilities of the position; conduct which directly and substantially impairs the effectiveness of the employee in the performance of their responsibilities; conduct which directly and substantially impairs the effectiveness of university operations, unsatisfactory performance, poor attendance or behavior incompatible with effective conduct of duty, and behavior detrimental to the university, to the University; or other causes not mentioned above. 

5.2 Supervisor’s Responsibilities

5.2.1  Each supervisor should foresee the possibility of a need to remove for cause when the adequacy of the employee’s performance is in question. It is the supervisor’s responsibility to give the employee full and timely notice of the problem, and to make full effort, with the assistance of Human Resources, to help the employee to maintain or recover their effectiveness. See the Progressive Discipline Policy for guidance.

5.2.2  There may be certain situations requiring involuntary separation where such anticipation is not possible. Nevertheless, all involuntary separations must be discussed with Human Resources before the employee is notified. Except for certain Level III offenses, the supervisor must have issued a Final Written Warning to the employee before termination may be considered or have communicated a performance improvement plan in place of a final written warning.

5.3  Notice Requirements

5.3.1 Except in cases of serious misconduct, the supervisor either must notify the employee at least two weeks before the effective date of separation or pay the employee for two weeks in lieu of notice. The separation conference may be held at the work site with the supervisor and department head present, or in Human Resources with a Human Resources representative and supervisor present. At the time of notice of separation or at any time in the notice period, the supervisor may relieve the employee from the performance of the duties of the position or change the assignment to other duties. The employee will be paid their salary through the effective date of the separation and for annual leave accrued.

5.3.2  If an employee is removed for cause which requires immediate separation from the position, the termination of employment may be made effective immediately without a notice period. In such a case, salary will cease with payment only of previous salary due and accrued annual leave. 

6.0 Responsibilities

6.1  Date of Termination

When an employee terminates employment with the university, the termination date to be indicated shall be the last day on which the employee actually worked. The final paycheck may be in the form of payment for time worked, vacation, holiday, or a combination, and may include any lump sum pay of accrued vacation leave benefits.

6.2  Return of University Property

6.2.1 An employee who separates from university employment shall return all university owned equipment and/or property assigned to them in advance of the date of issuance of the final check. Such equipment or property may include, but shall not be limited to: uniforms, locker and office keys, ID badges and/or cards, laptops, cell phones, credit cards, materials, supplies, or equipment issued or loaned to the employee.

  1. The employee shall be given an Employee Exit Procedure Form prior to the last day of work.
  2. It is the employee’s responsibility to return all university owned equipment and/or property assigned or issued to them to the department head or appropriate designee and to obtain authorized signatures on the Employee Exit Procedure Form.
  3. A completed Employee Exit Procedure Form must be returned to the separating employee’s manager on or before the employee’s last day of work.
  4. The manager must attest that all university owned equipment and/or property has been returned and/or accounted for before the end of the employee’s last day of work.
  5. The manager must forward a completed Employee Exit Procedure Form to Human Resources.

6.3  Final Check

Final paychecks for employees separating from active university employment are distributed by the Payroll Office. This includes amounts for time worked up to and including the employee’s last day of work and any accrued vacation. Issuance of final paychecks is subject to completion and submission with all necessary signatures of the Employee Exit Procedure Form.

  1. Terminated employees will not receive payment for sick leave earned but not taken.
  2. Terminated employees will not receive payment for Family/Medical Leave earned but not taken.
  3. Terminated employees will be paid for earned and unused annual leave up to a maximum of one calendar’s year of accrued leave.

6.4  Records

6.4.1 The manager shall submit the following records to Human Resources via Workday for each employee separating from active university employment on the last day of active employment: 

  1. A copy of the employee’s notice of separation or letter of resignation, if applicable.
  2. A completed Employee Exit Procedure Form.

6.4.2  Exit Survey.  An online exit questionnaire will be automatically emailed to the employee when their termination action is completed through Workday