Severance

University employees are entitled to a choice between the University benefit and the Workforce Transition Act (WTA) benefit. Classified employees are entitled only to the WTA benefit.

Under the University policy, a University employee is entitled to work for a period of up to six months’ prior to termination of employment. To the extent the employee receives less than six months’ notice, the employee is entitled to severance pay. The amount of the severance pay will be determined on a graduated scale depending on the amount of notice, as detailed in the Working @ VCU: ‘Great Place” HR Policy. The combination of notice plus severance must equal six months.

Under the WTA, severance benefits are based on continuous years of service with the Commonwealth of Virginia. If a University employee elects to receive WTA severance benefits, that employee waives the ability to work during the notice period. The manager and employee negotiate a termination date within a two-week period from the notification date. The manager notifies the HR professional of this new date.

Review the side-by-side comparison of severance benefits offered under each policy below.

Example:

Jane is a University employee with five years of continuous state service who is notified on June 1 that she will be laid off on September 30 (a four-month notification period). This employee has two options to consider:

    • University severance benefit: four months work and two months severance pay, or equivalent combination of work and severance totalling six months; or
    • WTA severance benefit based on years of service: eight weeks pay (see chart below).

If Jane opts for the University severance benefit, her last day of work is September 30. She will work for four months and receive two additional months of pay, for a total of six months of notice and severance.

If Jane opts for the WTA, she waives her right to work for the four months offered through the University severance benefit. The manager and Jane negotiate a termination date within a two-week period from the June 1 notification date. The manager notifies the HR professional of this new date.

 

Comparison of WTA and VCU severance benefits

WTA

VCU

Years of Continuous and Completed Service

Weeks of Severance Pay

Description

0 or 1 year

4 weeks

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks)

2 years

 5 weeks

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks)

3 years

6 weeks

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks)

4 years

7 weeks

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks)

5 years

8 weeks

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

6 years

weeks

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

7 years

10 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

8  years

11 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

9 years

14 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

10 years

16 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

11 years

18 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

12 years

20 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

13 years

22 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

14 years

30 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

15 years

32 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

16 years

34 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

17 or more years

36 weeks 

Depending on notice received; up to 6 months (26 weeks) 

 

Conditions Under Which Interviews and Placement Rights Cease 

  • If you are offered a position as a result of priority interviews (at VCU), the preferential hiring process at another state agency (Blue Card), or as a result of your own application to VCU or another state agency, where no salary reduction or relocation is required, you must accept or you will be separated from employment.  You will no longer be entitled to other priority interview or placement options or to severance benefits. Benefits also cease if you resign or retire.

  • Severance ceases if you are re-employed by the Commonwealth or hired as an independent contractor or consultant while receiving benefits.