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Employee Transitions

Making Sound Staffing Decisions

During periods of diminishing resources, administrators and managers must examine all programs and services for their ability to achieve divisional and departmental mission and goals. Often these choices lead to a realignment of resources that often results in elimination of services and staff. This information will focus on how to integrate business needs with policy requirements. 

Forms related to retirement or phased retirement are found on the Road Ahead website.

Please note: Any supervisor considering the non-renewal of an employee should contact the appropriate HR Organizational Consultant. Your consultant will help you ensure that the non-renewal process is managed correctly by learning about the background of the employee, discussing with you the reason for the non-renewal, and providing guidance on the process and the necessary documentation to proceed. A list of consultants and the units that they support can be found here.

Contract Nonrenewal FAQs

What is a non-renewal?

A non-renewal is the conclusion of a contract for appointed personnel.

How much written notice is required for a non-renewal?

A written notice of non-renewal will issued based on the Chapter of Service. The most common notice obligation will be 90 days. Please contact your HR Consultant to determine the appropriate notice obligations and obtain the appropriate template(s).

Is a reduction in FTE considered a non-renewal?

Yes. Appointed personnel may have their current contract non-renewed, with the appropriate written notification based on the Chapter of Service, and then have a new contract issued with a reduction in FTE.

Can a notice of non-renewal be given verbally?

Verbal notification can be given. However, the written notice of nonrenewal is required and the written notice must meet the notice obligation requirement set forth in the Chapter of Service.  

What happens to sick and vacation time if an employee is non-renewed?

Appointed personnel who earn annual leave (vacation) will be paid any unused annual leave days, up to the amount earned for one year of service. The amount earned in one year of service is prorated based on the FTE and appointment length (fiscal or academic). See UHAP policy 8.01.01 Annual Leave, at:

Retiring employees may qualify for Retiree Accumulated Sick Leave (RASL). For more on RASL, visit:

Sick leave is not paid out upon separation of service.

What happens to health benefits if an employee is non-renewed?

Employees who separate from the university will have the opportunity to continue their health benefits by paying both the employer and the employee portion of the benefit premium through COBRA. COBRA is a health plan allowing employees to continue their benefits for up to 18 months after leaving an employer. Employees are encouraged to contact HR Solutions to learn more at (520) 621-3660 (main campus) or (520) 626-5593 (UAHS).

What happens to an employee's retirement plan if an employee is non-renewed?

Employees will have several options regarding their Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) or their Optional Retirement Plan (ORP). These may include leaving the account intact, rolling it over to another retirement plan, requesting a refund of contributions, or, if eligible, to retire.

Employees are encouraged to contact HR Solutions to learn more at (520) 621-3660 (main campus) or (520) 626-5593 (UAHS).

Can an employee who has been notified of non-renewal but is still working apply for other open positions at UA?

Yes. If the employee is selected for the new position and starts that position prior to the end of their contract, it is considered a transfer. If an employee’s contract period has already ended and then they are hired into a new UA position, it is considered a rehire. All open positions at UA are listed on, and applications are only accepted online.

How are non-renewals affected by UCAP?

With the implementation of the University Career Architecture Project (UCAP) all employees in scope of UCAP will become at-will university staff. Employees who are currently classified staff will have the option to switch over to university staff category and career architecture or opt out of moving to university staff.

Upon UCAP implementation, University Staff will no longer be issued annual contracts, and therefore will no longer be subject to a non-renewal process. Relevant policies regarding the employment status of University staff will include layoff and corrective action.

 Please visit the UCAP website for more information on the project.

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