Q: What is the Leave Bank?A:
A Leave Bank is a pooled fund of donated annual and restored leave. Eligible members draw leave from the bank to cover time out the office due to a personal or family medical emergency.
Q: How can an employee become a member of the Leave Bank?A:
An eligible employee can enroll during an enrollment period using the “Leave Bank Membership” tab in ITAS. Existing employees may enroll during the annual fall open enrollment, which runs from mid-November to mid-December. A new employee may enroll within 60 days of his/her enter-on-duty date. A membership contribution of one pay period’s accrual of annual leave is required. Visit our membership page for more information.
Q: If an employee is unable to make the Leave Bank membership contribution, are they unable to join?A:
If the applicant doesn't have sufficient leave to make the membership contribution or they're a VLTP or Leave Bank recipient, the membership contribution is automatically waived.
Q: Who may donate leave to the Leave Bank?A:
Any Federal civilian employee. Visit our Leave Bank donation page for more information.
Q: When can I enroll and become a member of the Leave Bank?A:
During the annual open enrollment period, which runs from mid-November through mid-December. The open enrollment period will last for at least 30 calendar days. A new employee may enroll within 60 days of his/her enter-on-duty date.
Q: How much leave must I contribute to join the Leave Bank?A:
The yearly contribution amount will be one pay period’s worth of annual leave based on the employee’s annual leave category. This minimum contribution requirement also applies to part-time employees.
Q: What are the eligibility requirements for becoming a Leave Bank recipient?A:
An applicant must:
- Be a current Leave Bank member;
- Experience a qualifying medical emergency, which is projected to result in at least 24 hours of non-pay status; and
- Complete and submit a Leave Recipient package to the Leave Bank Office no later than 30 calendar days following the termination of the medical emergency.
Q: Can an employee apply to be a recipient in both the Leave Bank and the VLTP?A:
Yes. Since the Leave Bank provides 100% of the medical need up to the yearly hourly caps (480 hours for personal and family medical emergencies), the only time a recipient would need leave under VLTP, in addition to the Leave Bank, is if he/she exceeds the cap.
Q: Will I need to join the Leave Bank each year to continue my membership?A:
Once you join the Leave Bank, you will automatically be re-enrolled each year unless you take action in ITAS to opt out during the open enrollment period.
Q: Who is eligible to become a member of Leave Bank?A:
Federal civilian employees of the NIH.
Q: What is FMLA?A:
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides covered employees with up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave without pay (LWOP) during any 12 month period for certain family and medical needs.
Q: How do I request a retirement estimate from my Benefits Specialist?A:
A request for a retirement estimate must be submitted on-line. Upon entering your information, scroll to the bottom of the page and click "Submit" to submit your request. Upon receipt of your request, your Benefits Specialist will prepare a retirement annuity estimate and send it to you.
Q: Must I be enrolled in a Self and Family plan for the five (5) years immediately preceding retirement in order to be eligible to continue Self and Family coverage into retirement?A:
The five (5) year requirement applies to coverage under the FEHB program. If you are covered under a Self Only or a Self and Family enrollment for the five (5) years immediately preceding retirement, you are eligible to continue your FEHB coverage into retirement.
Q: Can I continue health insurance coverage if my spouse dies while employed?A:
It depends. The following applies:
If the employee had a Self and Family enrollment at the date of death and a survivor annuity is payable, the surviving spouse can continue health insurance coverage.
- The enrollment must be immediate, and there can be no lapse in coverage.
- The premiums will be deducted from the survivor annuity.
If the employee had a Self and Family enrollment at the date of death, but no survivor annuity is payable--these survivors are not eligible for Temporary Continuation of Coverage.
- The enrollment in Temporary Continuation of Coverage will terminate within 30 days.
- The survivor has the right to convert to an individual policy within 30 days.
If the employee had a Self Only enrollment at the date of death, the enrollment terminates at death with no right to enroll or convert for the survivor.
Q: Does an employee have to recertify their medical certification?A:
Your leave approving official may require subsequent medical recertification on a periodic basis, but not more than once every 30 calendar days. If your health care provider has specified on the medical certification a minimum duration of the period of incapacity, NIH may not request recertification until that period has passed.
Q: Where can I obtain a copy of my W-2?A:
You can view and print your W-2 in myPay. A copy will also be mailed to your home address of record. There is a function in myPay to turn off the mailed copy if you do not desire to receive a mailed copy.
Q: How can I verify if my home address is correct?A:
You can verify the accuracy of your home address by accessing myPay and selecting “Correspondence Address.” If your address is incorrect, make the change and select “Save.”
Q: Who can expect a W-2?A:
You will receive a W-2 if you are a Federal employee employed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
If you are not a Federal employee employed by NIH (such as an IRTA, Visiting Fellow, or Special Volunteer) you will receive a 1099, 1099G, or 1042S. These documents must be obtained from the Office of Financial Management (OFM).
For 1099s, contact OFM’s Customer Service number at 301-496-6088.
For 1099G or 1042S, you may call 301-496-5635.
Q: Where can I obtain a copy of a prior year’s W-2?A:
You can view and print a prior year's W-2 in myPay. If you are separated and no longer have access to myPay, you may submit a Request for Duplicate, Corrected or Prior Year W-2, Wage and Tax Statement Form to your assigned Payroll Liaison in the Leave, Payroll, and Workforce Support Branch. You must indicate on the form whether you want a duplicate W-2 from HHS (prior to pay period 10/2005), DFAS, or both. Your request will then be forwarded to HHS for processing. Please make sure that the current address and the address to which the W-2 should be sent is correct on the form.
Q: How can I get a corrected W-2?A:
If your W-2 is incorrect, you may submit a Request for Duplicate, Corrected or Prior Year W-2, Wage and Tax Statement Form to your assigned Payroll Liaison in the Leave, Payroll, and Workforce Support Branch. You must supply a legitimate justification for the correction. Your request will then be forwarded to HHS for processing. Please make sure that the current address and the address to which the W-2 should be sent is accurate on the form.
Q: I am already enrolled in Basic and Options A and B under FEGLI. Can I elect Option C now?A:
Yes. Legally married same-sex spouses and children of legal same-sex marriages are now eligible family members, so you may add coverage for them under Option C. The Option C coverage can only be elected during an Open Season or if you have a Qualifying Life Event.
Q: May I decrease or cancel my FEGLI coverage?A:
Yes. Enrollees may decrease or cancel their coverage at any time. However, there are only certain instances in which you may enroll.
Q: Will employees on “leave restrictions” be allowed to apply and receive donations from the Leave Bank?A:
The Leave Bank Office will consult with the Employee Relations Specialist and make determinations on an individual basis.
Q: Can I donate sick leave to the Leave Bank?A:
No. By law, sick leave cannot be donated to a Leave Bank or a recipient of the VLTP.
Q: Can I change my mind after I have donated leave to the Leave Bank and request to have my leave returned?A:
No. By law, donations to a Leave Bank or to a Leave Recipient cannot be returned to the donor after the donation has been processed.