Employment with the United States Postal Service is a prestigious gig, considering how selective the agency is about hiring. You wouldn’t want to threaten that by being late or missing work, but how much is too much? Sometimes, emergencies arise that are beyond our control.
So, what is the USPS attendance policy, and how many strikes do you get? I’ve researched the matter thoroughly, and here’s everything I discovered!
What Is the USPS Attendance Policy?
USPS expects employees to maintain the schedule to which they are assigned as well as they’re able. Without justifiable proof, an ongoing failure to report to work on time may result in disciplinary action or firing. Also, if you miss three consecutive days of work because of illness, be prepared to bring a doctor’s note.
If you have more questions about the USPS attendance policy, including how much work you can miss, if you can be forced to work on your day off, and even whether the Postal Service can fire you for calling in sick, keep reading!
How Many Days Can You Miss at USPS?
The Postal Service has no hard-and-fast rules on the books that say, “Miss X amount of days, get fired” per se.
Instead, the Postal Service relies heavily on each location’s manager, using their best judgment to a certain point.
For example, imagine an employee misses their shift but gives notification promptly (e.g., calling in on the way to the ER or calling as soon as possible).
Then, this employee will likely be treated with leniency and compassion, especially if they are normally reliable and on time.
But then, after three missed days (especially consecutive ones), management begins to require evidence or proof to support the employees’ claims that their kid is in the hospital.
In this case, the employee would need valid documentation for the medical excuse, like a note from a doctor.
Then, management can use their best judgment on how to proceed from this point forward.
Notice how the gesture of reaching out to management and explaining what is going on as soon as possible makes all the difference.
In contrast, even one absence without any explanation or reasonable attempt to reach out to management could be the cause of disciplinary action.
However, it appears that USPS doesn’t skip straight to firing immediately but instead goes through some disciplinary actions before reaching that conclusion.
How Many Times Can You Call in at USPS?
The Postal Service offers a generous benefits package, with full-time employees able to accrue unlimited sick leave and part-time employees up to 13 days per year.
Thus, call-ins are normal and permissible, especially when done through the correct channels.
On the other hand, when employees don’t show up to work and offer zero explanation (promptly or otherwise), the Postal Service takes issue.
How Does USPS Holiday Leave Work?
USPS employees may take advantage of ten days of paid holiday observance each year.
Furthermore, these paid holidays include:
- New Year’s Day, January 1
- Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, the third Monday in January
- Washington’s Birthday/Presidents Day, the third Monday in February
- Memorial Day, the last Monday in May
- Independence Day, July 4
- Labor Day, the first Monday in September
- Columbus Day/Indigenous Peoples’ Day, second Monday in October
- Veterans’ Day, November 11
- Thanksgiving Day, the fourth Thursday in November
- Christmas Day, December 25
According to USPS’s employee manual, the preceding Friday is observed if a holiday falls on a Saturday.
Likewise, if the holiday falls on a Sunday, the following Monday is observed.
Moreover, this rule of thumb applies to all full-time employees. But, part-time employees may be subject to work on holidays.
Can USPS Force You To Work On Your Day Off?
The Postal Service’s website does not cover what to do if management asks you to come in on your day off.
But, the locals of FederalSoup.com are adamant: You are not obligated to work on your day off.
However, if you feel like a supervisor is punishing you for not working on your day off, you should contact HR.
Can USPS Fire You For Calling in Sick?
The Postal Service will likely not fire you for calling in sick – provided you don’t make a habit out of it.
For example, if you miss more than three consecutive days due to illness, you should prepare to show a doctor’s note and keep management in the loop.
With that, you may face disciplinary action when your sick days start to interfere with management’s confidence in your reliability to show up for work.