General Questions

How can I use Carry Over Bank hours?

After an absence of 7 consecutive work days charged to the Short Term Bank (STB) for extended illness and approved for Family Medical Leave (FMLA), you may deduct additional days for the remainder of the continued absence from accrued days in either the short term bank, long term bank, or the carry over bank.

Can I use PTO hours in the same pay period in which it is accrued?

No. Under PTO you may not use time until you have earned it. You may use only the hours in your beginning balance for the pay period.

Are the days in the PTO bank 8 hour days or 12 hour days?

When we speak of PTO days, we are referring to 8 hour days. However, PTO is accrued in tenths of hours. Non-exempt employees may take Paid Time Off in increments of .1 of an hour or more. Exempt employees may take Paid Time Off in increments of four hours or more. When taking an entire day off, you will be paid for the number of hours normally scheduled to work for that day. If you work a portion of a day and take the rest of the day off, you should note the amount of time worked and record the balance of the scheduled work day as PTO.

If I am scheduled to work 20 hours a week but actually work 30 hours, do I accrue paid time off on 20 hours or 30 hours?

You accrue PTO on all hours worked up to 40 hours per week (non-exempt).

If I take two weeks paid time off for vacation, do I continue to accrue PTO hours?

Yes, you accrue paid time off when using PTO hours.

Will DUHS still recognize holidays such as Christmas and MLK day?

As an incentive for employees to work on holidays, Duke will continue to pay non-exempt employees time-and-a-half on the six holidays Duke recognizes (New Years Day, MLK Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas).

Individuals who work in departments that close on these holidays, or individuals who request time off on recognized holidays will be able to have hours deducted from their Short Term Bank.

What do I do if I am sick?

If you are sick, you follow the same procedures as you currently follow in your workplace. The time off will be charged to your Short Term Bank. If your Short Term Bank is empty, the time will be charged to your Long Term Bank. If the Long Term Bank is empty, the time will be charged to your Carry Over Bank.

Badging In and Out

What happens if the network is down?

Both the badge reader and the telephone system can store transactions until the computer network connection is restored. The data will then be uploaded.

Can I use the computer to sign in and out?

All employees can view their time cards via the web but badging in or out with this option must be requested by your manager.

What do I do if I am attending a class at Oregon Street or some other place where there is no badge reader?

When you get back to your normal place of work, put down your hours on the adjustment sheet.

How does the system know what premiums to pay me?

Your manager will have entered the appropriate information into the system. Under PTO, premiums will be consistently applied across the health system.

What should I do if I forget to badge out?

Enter the time you left on the adjustment sheet the next day.

Do I have to badge in and out for lunch breaks?

No, lunch breaks are automatically deducted (for most departments) from your total hours captured. If you work through your lunch hour, you will have to note the adjustment on the adjustment sheet. If you are required to badge in and out for lunch breaks your supervisor will inform you

Do I have to badge in and out for my breaks?

No, your breaks count as part of your work time, as they always have.

Leave of Absence

What happens to funeral leave?

Funeral leave is included in PTO. To create additional flexibility, you will be able to take whatever length of time you need from your short term bank with your supervisor's approval.

The first day (call in for a death in the family) is considered scheduled time off. If a pattern/trend is identified in funeral leave utilization, may address as an attendance or performance issue.

What if the employee is out on personal leave and they become ill? Can the employee move to Family Medical Leave (FMLA) or are they able to access their Long-Term Bank (LTB) and/or Carry-Over Bank (COB)?

No. The employee must return to work, then apply for FMLA.

If an employee is on intermittent leave, when can he/she access their COB?

Employee must use 7 days from Short-Term Bank (STB) each leave period before accessing the COB.

Less than 1 year of service of less than 1250 hours in 12 months. Are these employees covered by FMLA?

No. The employee may be eligible for a personal leave.

Can an employee use STB for annual National Guard training/duty?


What happens to Jury Duty leave?

Jury duty is NOT included in PTO. If you are asked to serve on a jury you will continue to receive your regular rate of pay for the entire period of Jury Duty Served. It will not be taken from any of your PTO banks.

Leaving Your Job/Transfers

What happens to PTO time when I retire?

Time in the Short Term Bank (STB) and Long Term Bank (LTB) is paid 100% at retirement if you are age 55 or older.

At retirement the unused time in your Short Term Bank and Long Term Bank can be treated in one of two ways: 1) you may receive 100% of accrued and unused hours in a lump sum payment based on your base rate of pay in effect at the time of retirement, or 2) you may receive 100% of your current base rate of pay for each Short Term Bank and Long Term Bank hour until all hours are exhausted, extending service to retirement date. PTO does not accrue during any of these pay out periods.

Time in the Carry Over Bank (COB): Sick days do not have cash value at retirement. However, if you are a non-exempt employee you may receive credited service for these days as detailed under the Employees' Retirement Plan. Exempt employees will not be credited with service, since their retirement plan (the 403b) is not based on length of service.

If you are vested in both the exempt and non-exempt retirement plans, you will receive 100% of your accrued and unused hours in the Short Term Bank and Long Term Bank as described above.

Why can biweekly employees use their COB hours toward years of credited service at retirement and monthly employees cannot?

  1. The hourly retirement plan (Employees' Retirement Plan - ERP) is a defined benefit plan (guaranteed benefit) and years of service is one of the factors in calculating the retirement benefit.
  2. The salaried retirement plan is a defined contribution plan and years of service is not a factor (it is based upon contribution).

What happens to PTO time if I quit my job?

You will receive 100 percent of your accrued and unused Short Term Bank hours if you have worked for more than one year. If you have worked less than one year but more than 90 days, you will receive 50 percent of accrued and unused Short Term Bank hours. You will receive no payment for STB if you have worked less than 90 days.

Long Term Bank: You will not be paid for hours in your Long Term Bank at the time of termination.

What happens to PTO time if I transfer to another job at Duke?

If you transfer to a job anywhere within Duke University Health System (including Durham Regional Hospital and Duke Raleigh Hospital), your PTO time will remain intact.

If you transfer to a job within the Medical School or Duke University, the following transition rules will occur: 73% of the time in your Short Term Bank will be placed in your Vacation bank. 27% of the time in the Short Term Bank plus 100% of the time in your Long Term Bank and Carry Over Bank will be placed in your sick time bank.


If I am sick the day prior to a severe weather day, is the severe weather day considered unscheduled?

If you communicate with your manager on the day of your illness and consecutive days of absence are approved, the severe weather day will be a scheduled absence.

If an employee returns to Duke within one year of layoff, what happens to Carry-Over Bank (COB)?

Duke will restore any unused COB hours.

If an employee works greater than one-half of their shift, then goes home sick, how do we deduct less than 4 hours?

Current policy states that exempt employees cannot deduct less than 4 hours from their PTO banks. Exempt employees are expected to work the required hours based upon their full-time equivalent (at home, additional time or whatever it takes to accomplish the work). If a pattern or trend is identified, the manager can address this as attendance or performance issue.

What banks are available to the estate at time of employees death?

Short-Term Bank (STB) hours are paid to the estate at 100%.

How does PTO work with Duke disability?

In the event of approved Duke disability, you may supplement the Duke disability with time from your short term bank, then your long term bank, and then your carry over bank. The supplemental amount should not exceed 40% of your gross salary (pre-disability) and you can take this action for weeks 13 – 25 only of your approved disability.

How does PTO work with workers' compensation?

PTO (first from your short term bank, then your long term bank, and finally your carry over bank) may be used during the seven-day waiting period at the beginning of an authorized period out of work due to an accepted workers’ compensation claim.  If your waiting period is subsequently covered by workers’ compensation due to an absence longer than 21 days, then you would have the option to partially replenish your PTO bank using the workers’ compensation benefit. 

In some cases, PTO may be used to supplement your workers’ compensation benefit during an authorized period out of work.  If your workers’ compensation benefit is capped by the maximum compensation rate, you have the option to supplement with enough PTO to increase your weekly compensation to the normal two-thirds (.6667) of your average weekly wage at the date of injury.  PTO may only be used to supplement in this manner while you are completely unable to work, not while you are working reduced hours or subject to work restrictions.  Your workers’ compensation claims adjuster will assist with calculating any supplemental PTO.