Active Military Service Policies
Governor Graves issued Executive Order 2001-05 on September 27, 2001,
establishing special policies and procedures to assist state
employees who are called or volunteer for active military service in
response to the events of September 11, 2001.
Some of the specific policies and procedures include:
- The employee’s position will be protected for as long as they
required to remain on active duty.
This protection does not include classified temporary employees,
only unclassified temporary employees with benefits eligibility,
as well as all regular employees.
- The employee must return to state employment within 90 days after
release from active duty or within one year after discharge if
- Upon returning to their state position, employees will not be
from employment, except for cause:
- within one year of the date the employee returns to his or
her position if the employee’s period of active duty was more than
- within 180 days of the date the employee returns to his or her
position if the employee’s period of active duty was more than 30
days but less than 181 days.
- General pay increase and step increases that would have been received
had the employee not been on military leave without pay will be granted
when the employee returns to work from active military duty.
- Bonuses (i.e. suggestion award program) for which the state has
made an obligation will be paid while the employee is on military leave
- Employees will receive longevity bonuses that they would have received
had the employee not been on military leave without pay. Bonuses are to be
paid when due, just as if the employee were not on
- Length of service will continue while the employee is on military
- The time spent on military leave will count as time worked toward
length of service, eligibility for longevity pay, and the accrual rate for
- The employee may request payout of accrued vacation leave (not to
exceed maximum allowed by K.A.R. 1-9-4) or a portion of the balance of any
vacation leave, compensatory time, and holiday compensatory time accrued
prior to leave for active military duty. The leave or compensatory
time accrued during the pay period of the payout will not be paid out
at the time the employee leaves for active military duty. This leave
and/or time will be available for use when the employee returns to
their state position from active military duty.
- The employee has the option to buyback either all or none of their
vacation leave that was paid out, at the value that it was paid out
regardless of subsequent increases to the employees’ rate of pay.
Employees must exercise this option within 30 days after returning to
- Vacation and sick leave will not accrue while the employee is on
active military duty.
- Employees may request and use accrued vacation leave, compensatory
time, and holiday compensatory time at any time over the course of
the period that the employee is on leave for active duty.
- A discretionary holiday will be afforded to each eligible employee in
accordance with the provisions of K.A.R. 1-9-2(b)(3) while the employee is
on active duty. Employees must use the discretionary holiday within the
period of time established for all state employees, either before being
called to active duty, or after returning from active duty. If the
employee does not use their discretionary holiday within the allotted
time, the discretionary holiday is lost.
- The employee’s health insurance coverage ends effective the last
of the month in which the employee goes on military leave.
- Employees on military leave without pay will be allowed to continue
health insurance coverage at the current premium rate for the first 30
days of such leave. The employee is required to pay premiums directly to
the Division of Human Resources. After the initial 30-day period, the
employee may continue with the State of Kansas health insurance coverage
by paying the entire premium (employee and employer) under the Direct Bill
- An employee with spouse, children, or full family coverage may elect
to drop themselves and keep the spouse and/or children covered in the
State of Kansas health insurance plan. This election must be made within
30 calendar days of the effective date of the military leave without pay.
The entire premium (employee and employer) will be paid by the employee
under the Direct Bill Program.
- If group health insurance coverage is continued, it will be the
primary payer of claims and their military coverage will be
- Employees and/or their dependents who discontinue the State of Kansas
health insurance plan
while on military leave without pay may reenter the health insurance plan
upon returning to work if it is within 90 days of release from military
leave. There is no waiting period.
- Employees on military leave without pay during annual Open Enrollment
periods may enroll in any coverage for which they are eligible, without
penalty, upon their return to active state employment status.
- If an employee is qualified for and elects to participate in the
military’s transitional health benefit program, the employee will be
allowed to reenter the State of Kansas health plan without penalty when
this coverage terminates. The employee may be qualified for up to 180 days
of transitional health benefits.
- Employee participation ends on the last day of the month in which
the employee goes on military leave.
- Employees may choose to continue enrollment only in the Health Care
FSA under the COBRA state plan (personal payment of contribution). If
an employee chooses to continue his or her Health Care FSA while on
military leave, the employee would need to make the non pre-tax
payment (monthly or lump sum) directly to:
Division of Health Policy and Finance
Landon State Office Building
900 S. W. Jackson Street
Topeka, Kansas 66612
- The Health Care FSA can only be continued through the end of the
current plan year.
- The employee may terminate active enrollment and reenter the plan upon
return from military leave without a waiting period. Coverage would start
the first of the month after return from military leave. The contribution
amount will be either the same elected amount, or a different amount based
on a status change during the leave.
- If enrolled, participation will be suspended on the last
- Employees may reenter the program upon returning to work. The employee
will have up to three times their period of service in the military to
make up missed contributions.
- Hardship withdrawals can be considered based on Internal Revenue
Service (IRS) guidelines.
- An employee who is on an approved military leave
without pay will
continue to be covered by the basic group
life insurance program regardless of having gone off the payroll. This
extended coverage ceases once the active military duty period has ended,
if the employee does not immediately return to active state
- An employee who is on approved military leave without pay has
three options available concerning this life insurance coverage while on
military leave without pay:
- continue the current KPERS Optional Life Insurance coverage for up
to 12 months by paying the monthly premium to the Division of Human
Resources, Kansas State University.
- convert the current KPERS Optional Life Insurance coverage to an
individual policy through Minnesota Life Insurance Company, or
- cancel the KPERS Optional Group Life Insurance coverage while on
military leave without pay.
- Whether or not the employee exercises these options, the employee on
military leave without pay is immediately entitled, upon timely return to
state employment, to his/her former level of optional coverage. Premiums
will be based on the member’s age at the time of return to state
- An employee who is on approved military leave without pay is eligible
to continue this life insurance coverage. The employee pays the premium
for this coverage.
- Should the employee elect not to pay the premium or cancel the life
insurance coverage, s/he may re-apply any time after returning from
military leave without pay to state employment. This is subject to
Metropolitan Life Insurance Company underwriting provisions.
There is no KPERS disability coverage during service
in the military.
Kansas Board of Regents Mandatory Retirement Plan
- Participation is suspended while the employee is on military leave
without pay. An employee who is in the "one-year waiting period" awaiting
participation is not penalized for being off payroll on military leave
without pay. The period the employee is away on military leave without pay
is counted toward completion of the one-year waiting period.
- With respect to retirement plan premiums, no break in employment
service is considered to have occurred because of military service. The
employer will make, on behalf of the returning employee, any plan
contributions that the employer would have made if the employee had not
been absent for military service provided the employee agrees to make
their contribution to the selected retirement plan provider.
- Participation is suspended while
employee is on military leave without pay. An employee who is in the
"year of service" awaiting membership in
KPERS is not penalized for being off payroll on
military leave without pay. The period the employee is away on military
leave without pay is counted toward completion of the year of
- Complete a Change or
(pdf) form placing
the employee on
military leave without pay. Mark the "Leave of Absence - for
more than 30 days" action
an "X" and indicate under Additional Comments "Military
Pay." Attach a copy of the military order placing the employee on
- Upon return from military leave without pay, complete a Change or
Separation PER-39 (pdf)
form returning the employee to
Mark "Return from Leave". Attach a copy of the
military order or DD-214 form discharging the employee from active
Questions should be addressed to Benefits Administration, Division of
Resources, (785) 532-6277, or email:
Policy and Procedures Manual
Other Leave Programs