The decision is to request a Leave of Absence (LoA) and let the company to decide their course of action. Having researched the company policy on our intranet regarding unpaid leave, it appears that most scenarios involved extended maternity leave, short term disability or family medical, NOT bicycle touring. Can you believe that?!
There is slight mention of being able to request unpaid leave for up to three months. Not surprisingly, no insurance coverage is available. My trip will be roughly 4 months putting me over the corporate maximum. We shall see just how much the company likes me, even to consider the option…
Since I would like some time to prepare off prior to my March 10 departure date, I will be requesting the LoA my birthday week, April 10, to time my last day anywhere from April 21, 24 through the 26. This would provide 2 to 2.5 weeks of time off to get my house in order. It turns out two weeks written notice to your manager for a LoA is the same as when resigning.
One last item I need to take into consideration is that accrued Paid Time Off (PTO) days do not get paid when leaving. I am using three rolled over from 2016 around my birthday weekend, but will likely have 6 or 7 for 2017 by the time I request the LoA. This has also thrown a wrench into my planning as I would like to ensure a smooth transition for my work to fellow staff, but I also want to get paid for what I have earned after almost 10 years at my place of employ.
To be continued….