UCL Human Resources


Career Break Policy

Career break policy

  1. Within the existing Special Leave Policy (leave for domestic and personal reasons), staff with caring responsibilities and one year’s service, can request unpaid leave for a period of up to 6 months to care for someone who is seriously ill.
  2.  In addition to this, staff with two years’ service may request an unpaid career break from their post for a period of up to 12 months to care for a family member or to undertake career or personal development.
  3. Such a career break would be unpaid and UCL would not contribute to pension contributions during this period and annual leave will not accrue. The employment contract would remain in place and the individual would not normally be at liberty to work for another employer during their period of unpaid leave.
  4. Each case will be considered on its merits and a decision on whether to agree such a request would depend on UCL's ability to recruit someone with sufficient skills and experience to cover the post temporarily and the time judged necessary for such an individual to be fully effective in the role.
  5. Where a post can be covered satisfactorily during the individual's absence s/he will be offered a return to the same post.  Where such a role cannot be filled on a temporary basis or where an individual is leaving one of many similar posts at the same level, an individual may be offered a guaranteed return to a similar post at the same level, on completion of a career break.
  6. Career breaks can be an effective means of retaining a skilled and experienced member of staff whose domestic commitments mean that if they do not take a career break they must resign from their post. All career break arrangements must be discussed with the HR Business Partnering team before agreement is reached with an individual and HR will confirm the arrangements in writing.
  7. For more information on what will happen to  your pension while on a career break, please see Unpaid Leave of Absence.