Special and Other Leave

Special Leave

 Special Leave is granted in certain circumstances, subject to the work requirements of the Civil Service:

(i)              Special leave on marriage:  Circular 7 of 1982 – Special Leave with Pay on Marriage Up to five days paid leave on marriage provided the total of marriage leave and annual leave does not exceed twenty six days (General Council Report 1449).   Please also see a Letter to Personnel Officers dated 22 July 2011 entitled “Marriage Leave in the civil service – Civil partnerships and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Acts 2010″.

FAQs on the subject of Marriage Leave can be found here

(ii)            Special leave at time of bereavement:  Up to five days paid leave in the case of a spouse (including a cohabiting partner), child (including adopted children and children being cared for on the basis of ‘in loco parentis’) or any person in a relationship of domestic dependency, including same sex partners; up to three days paid leave in the case of other immediate relatives [for the purposes of bereavement leave "immediate relative” means father, step-father, mother, step-mother, brother, step-brother, half-brother, brother-in-law, sister, step-sister, half-sister, sister-in-law, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, grandfather, grandmother or grandchild of an officer]; up to one working day in the case of an uncle, aunt, niece or nephew. (Circular 22 of 2009 Bereavement Leave in the Civil Service

FAQs on the subject of Bereavement Leave can be found here

(iii)          Study and examination leave:  Ten days paid study leave in respect of the final year only of a third level primary or masters degree;  five days paid study leave for the other years of a third level course;  paid leave for time necessarily spent at examinations  (Circular 23 of 2007 – Post Entry Education, Study Leave and Examination Leave)

(iv)          Leave for civic purposes:  A number of days paid leave per year are allowed for instruction in Civil Defence (Circular 22 of 1962 Special Leave for Instruction in Civil Defence), training with the Reserve Defence Force (Circular 51 of 1979 Leave for attendance at training with the Reserve Defence Forces), training or call out with Voluntary Search and Rescue Organisations (Circular 15 of 2002 Search & Rescue). This covers (1). Leave for attendance at training courses with Voluntary Search and Rescue Organisations and (2).  Leave for call out to an emergency search and rescue), acting as a staff representative

(v)         Facilities for non full-time representatives of staff associations and unions is covered in (Circular 14 of 1980 Facilities for non full-time representatives of staff associations – unions).

(vi)      Sporting Events  representing Ireland in certain major international sporting events is covered in (Letter – Special Leave for Sporting Purposes)

(vii)       Leave for domestic reasons:  Up to six months unpaid leave to deal with difficulties arising from the death or serious illness of an immediate relative and up to two months unpaid leave to deal with other urgent domestic affairs. (Circular 05 of 2010 Force Majeure and Other Urgent Family Reasons Leave).  See also sections on Carers Leave and Force Majeure Leave.

(viii)       Leave to work with the EU or an international organisation: Up to ten years unpaid leave to serve with the EU and up to five years unpaid leave to serve with an international organisation of which Ireland is a member (Circular 33 of 1991 Special Leave for appointment with international organisations etc.)

(ix)        Leave for charitable and humanitarian work:  Up to one year unpaid leave for charitable or cultural work in Ireland (Circular 02 of 1976 Special Leave), and up to five years for humanitarian emergencies and development work overseas (Letter to Personnel Officers 4 Nov 1997).

(x)         Jury Service/Court Appearance: It should be noted that if an officer is not selected for jury service, she/he is not entitled to time off with full pay.  Accordingly, an officer should return to work in the afternoon, s/he is not covered by the terms of Circular 11 of 1977 Jury Service. Arrangements where civil servants are required to attend in Court as witnesses are covered in Circular 31 of 2007 – Attendance of Civil Servants in Court as Witnesses

Special leave without pay may be given in certain other circumstances at the discretion of the Head of Department/Office; however it should be noted that unpaid leave will not reckon for superannuation purposes. An officer considering applying for special leave should consult the Personnel Section.

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