Frequently Asked Questions About Work-related COVID-19 Issues​

As the world, our nation and our state continue to respond to the rapidly spreading threat of COVID-19, we continue to face new challenges as a university – challenges we've never had to face before.

Governor Whitmer issued a "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order for the state of Michigan effective March 24, 2020, an aggressive measure designed to combat the spread of the virus, which remains in place today.

During this time, CMU continues to operate to the fullest extent safely possible and a phased approach to bringing employees back to work on campus was announced May 9.

For up-to-date information on the university’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19), please visit the CMU Coronavirus Information Center.

For HR related questions, contact the HR-Employment Services at 989-774-2010 or (staff) or Faculty Personnel Services at 989-774-3368 (faculty). For student employee related questions, please contact Student Employment Services at 989-774-3881 or

The language used in this document does not create a contract of employment between Central Michigan University and any employee. The university reserves the unilateral right to modify, change, suspend, or cancel all or any part of the policies, procedures, and programs described herein at any time, with or without prior notice. When the university develops new or modifies existing policies, procedures and programs, it will notify members of the university community as soon as practical.

This page will be regularly updated as more information becomes available. Last updated August 17, 2020 at noon.

You may leave work with supervisory approval. Discuss with your supervisor about how you may be able to make up the work in the same workweek, work a different schedule, or work from home (see PAY, TIME OFF & LEAVE, below).

Temporary employees will be unpaid for time not worked due to reasons that do not fall under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

COVID Conversations – face covering compliance panel discussion (recorded)

What are you going to do when you see someone without a mask when they should be wearing one? Most of the time just a friendly reminder is all that is needed, but even those conversations can be difficult to start. But what about the difficult situations where someone simply doesn’t want to comply with our protocols, or the person is two levels above you? Listen in on the recording of a panel discussion with Harley Blake, Jeff Calhoun, Dean Richard Rothaus, and Tony Voisin for tips and answers to these questions and more.


(For faculty and staff covered by a CMU-sponsored health plan)
If a medical professional orders a COVID-19 Test for you, it will be covered at no cost under all CMU-sponsored healthcare plans. This means that all copays, deductibles, and out-of-pocket costs are waived only for the focused test used to diagnose COVID-19. If you incur office visits or have other treatment needs, see the next question.
If you require an office visit for testing, or for treatment of a diagnosed case of COVID-19, you will have the same coverage that is currently available for any emergency or non-emergency illness, subject to the normal deductible, copay, and out-of-pocket amounts under CMU-sponsored medical plan you are enrolled. For additional coverage details, visit the CMU Benefits & Wellness webpage.
CMU provides resources to help benefit-eligible faculty and staff employees and eligible dependents cope with these types of life events through its Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Call 800-788-8630 (24 hours a day, 365 days a year). The EAP provides confidential, short-term counseling at no cost to the employee. Additionally, employees enrolled on a CMU-sponsored health plan can schedule time to speak with a counselor in the privacy of their home through the telemedicine option.
Benefit coverage will continue for employees who use approved unpaid time (either partially or fully unpaid). Employee premium cost share will be withheld when pay is available. When there isn't sufficient pay, employee premium cost share will go into arrears and will be withheld on the next available pay(s).

It's important to note that it may take several pays to recoup the benefit premium cost share due. Employees may not receive any pay until their cost share has been repaid. If employment terminates and the employee has not paid their benefit premium cost share, the Benefits & Wellness Office will mail a letter to the employee with instructions on how to repay the outstanding premium cost share.


(For Staff and Temporary Employees)
Employees may apply for Emergency Leave if they are unable to work or telework and meet the eligibility criteria under EPSL or EFMLA.
  • Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL): Beginning April 1, 2020, CMU will provide eligible employees with Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL). The EPSL may be used if an employee is unable to work (or telework) for one of six qualifying reasons. Eligible full-time employees may be paid for up to 80 hours of paid sick leave. Eligible part-time employees willl receive EPSL based on the average number of hours they work within a two-week period. Pay is at full or 2/3 rate depending on which of the six qualifying reason an employee is taking EPSL.
  • Emergency Family and Medical Leave (EFMLA): In addition, eligible CMU employees can apply for Emergency Family and Medical Leave (EFMLA) if an employee is unable to work (or telework) because they are caring for their minor child, if the child's school or child care provider is closed or unavailable due to the COVID-19 emergency.

    The first ten days of EFMLA leave are unpaid (but EPSL or regular accrued leave can be used during this period). After that, eligible employees will receive up to 2/3 of their regular pay for up to 10 weeks, for the number of hours that the employee would normally be scheduled to work. EFMLA claims will count toward the regular, annual FMLA limit of twelve work weeks.
A new leave code, "COVID-19 PA", has been added to the time and attendance system, TimeClock Plus. Benefit-eligible employees should use this leave code to track and record their approved paid administrative leave used during Gov. Whitmer's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order.

To record time, benefit-eligible employees should enter paid administrative leave using the "Request Manager" and applicable Template (see image below). This is the same location other types of leave time (e.g. sick, vacation, FMLA, etc.) are recorded. Hourly employees should record their time in hour increments (1/2 day increments for salaried employees). Supervisors or department designated approvers will be responsible to approve the requested time, prior to the payroll deadline.

​When a benefits-eligible employee:
​...And, with supervisory approval, is able to work from home
​...And is unable to work from home
​Has been instructed to self-quarantine, has COVID symptoms, or tests positive for COVID
​ Regular pay will continue
​Time will be covered with accrued leave unless employee elects to be unpaid.
​Reports a need to be away from work to care for a family member who is showing COVID-19 symptoms, or who is positive for COVID
​ Regular pay will continue
​Time will be covered with accrued leave unless employee elects to be unpaid. 
​Reports a need to be away from work due to a school or childcare closure
​ Regular pay will continue
​Time will be covered with accrued leave unless employee elects to be unpaid.
Temporary employees will be unpaid for time not worked.
Your supervisor has the authority to cancel any pre-approved vacation request, especially in circumstances where there are serious staff shortages as a result of illness. Your vacation could also be canceled if you have been designated as essential staff (see ABOUT ESSENTIAL EMPLOYEES section for more information).
You may not bring your children to the workplace. If you need to be home to care for others, talk to your supervisor and view the information under “How will I be paid if I have to be away from work due to a COVID-19 related reason?"