Pay Deductions & Leave Accrual

Deductions from Pay

Statutory and Involuntary Deductions

There are a number of deductions that will occur from most employee’s compensation. Among these are applicable federal and state income taxes. Social Security deductions are also taken from each employee’s earnings up to a specified limit that is called the Social Security “wage base.” This deduction is noted on the employee’s pay statement as FICA (actual social security deposits) and FICA MED (contributions to Medicare) and are combined to equal 7.65% of the employee’s taxable pay. Bates College matches the amount of Social Security taxes paid by each employee; Bates College’s match of 7.65% of the employee’s taxable earnings is noted on the pay statement as well.

International employees may be exempt from certain taxes and social security withholdings according to appropriate tax treaties and IRS regulations.

Other wage deductions, such as garnishments or tax levies, may be made to fulfill legal requirements when appropriate.

Benefit Deductions

In addition to legally mandated deductions, each benefit eligible employee will have deductions from their paycheck according to the benefits selected from the Bates College flexible benefits program. Employees make their benefit selections during their initial employment processing or annually during the benefits Open Enrollment period. Eligible employees authorize deductions from their paychecks to cover the cost of participating in these programs. The actual amount deducted will be determined by the benefits that were elected during initial benefits enrollment, or those benefits selected during the annual open enrollment period.

Exempt Employees (Monthly Pay Cycle): benefits credits and all benefit deductions are taken during each monthly pay period.

Nonexempt Employees (Bi-Weekly Pay Cycle): benefit deductions and credits are based on the number of pay periods they will be paid in a year and their benefit status (full-time full year, 10 month academic year and  9 month academic year).  The number of pay periods could vary from year to year (generally 26 pay periods) determined by where the pay dates fall on the calendar.  The actual amount deducted will be determined by the benefits that were elected for the year. However, benefit deductions are taken from the employee’s pay only 24 times per year, or twice a month. This results in two benefit deduction-free checks during months where there are 3 pay periods.

Leave Accrual

For more in depth information regarding types of leave and accrual rates, visit the Vacations and Leaves page on the Bates Human Resources website.

For exempt staff personnel, leaves accrue each monthly pay period. For nonexempt staff, leaves accrue in 24 of the 26 pay periods. Leaves are earned on a prorated basis, based upon the number of hours worked during the pay period. An individual staff member must work the entire pay period to earn the full amount of leave for that pay period. All leave accrual will be noted on the following pay statement.

Staff members who do not have a sick leave balance and take sick leave before it is accrued, will automatically have the appropriate amount of vacation time deducted, if available. New staff members with the College for less than 120 days will not have vacation time available. Staff members who take vacation time before it is accrued will not be paid for the time away.

Time away from campus that is not sick leave or an approved vacation, is considered unpaid leave. All unpaid leaves must be approved by the appropriate vice president or dean unless otherwise provided by College policy. Therefore, staff members may not exhaust all of their sick leave and create an unlimited bank of time off by choosing to receive no pay instead of using vacation leave. Staff members also may not exhaust their vacation time and create an unlimited bank of time off by choosing to receive no pay for unapproved time away from campus.

Patterns of use of sick or vacation leave that would indicate abuse may be reviewed by the supervisor. Vacation time must be approved and sick time can be scrutinized if patterns of use indicate potential abuse.