Donating Sick Leave

Approval Date
11 July 2018
Approved By
Chief Executive
Next Review
1 June 2019
DCE: People, Culture and Safety
Baldrige Criteria
Workforce focus

To provide support and assist the recovery of staff that are facing serious and/or long-term illness.  This policy applies to all permanent and fixed term staff and to staff who are independent contractors.


1.         The DCE: People, Culture and Safety, and Payroll will monitor the use and application of this policy, including all verification/approval of donating.

2.         Sick leave can be donated to another permanent staff member or a staff member on a fixed term agreement, where the donee of the sick leave, or a dependant has a confirmed diagnosis of a long term, severe or potentially terminal illness and has or is nearing exhaustion of their own sick leave entitlement.

2.1.        Up to 10 days can be donated per donor, per year, but the donor must have a balance of at least 20 days left available for them to take or be within 6 months of their next allocation. Additional days can be donated in exceptional circumstances, and with the approval of the DCE People, Culture and Safety.

2.2.        The days will only be taken from the donor as approved by the DCE:  People, Culture and Safety

2.3.        Sick leave donations permanently reduce the donor’s accrued balance or entitlement for that year, whichever is applicable.

2.4.        Staff leaving Otago Polytechnic Ltd (e.g., have resigned or have indicated their intention to leave the Polytechnic) are not able to donate sick leave.

2.5.        Unused sick leave will not be returned to the donor but will remain with  the donee of the sick leave.

2.6.        The DCE: People, Culture and Safety on behalf of Otago Polytechnic Ltd reserves the right to approve, or not approve, the donation of sick leave  on a case-by-case basis.

3.         The donor of sick leave will email the DCE: People, Culture and Safety and Payroll the name of the staff member to whom the sick leave is to be donated and how many days are being donated.

4.         The donee of donated sick leave must:

4.1.        Supply a current medical certificate that includes the broad nature of their or their family member’s condition, indicating current status, with reference to prognosis of, anticipated date of return to full duties, and any support   that   Otago   Polytechnic   can   provide   to   aid   their recovery/rehabilitation.

5.         For contractors, the value of any proposed donated sick leave, may be paid to support a contractor in serious situations at the discretion of the DCE: People, Culture and Safety. The leave donated will reduce the donor’s leave balance.

6.         Pregnancy is not considered to be an illness for the purposes of receiving donated sick leave, unless accompanied by medical reasons.

7.         Sick leave cannot be donated to staff who are absent on the basis of work related stress without prior approval of the Director People and Culture and a clear return to work plan being in place.

8.         Should the staff member be working with People and Culture regarding issues related to incapacity, sick leave donations will be considered by the DCE: People, Culture and Safety at that time on a case-by-case basis.

          In extenuating circumstances donations of sick leave for a family member who is not a dependant may be granted with approval from the DCE: People, Culture and Safety.



·   Leave Management (includes Parental Leave)