Use or Lose (2020)


Effective Date: Expiration Date: Chapters:
Nov. 25, 2020 Jan. 29, 2021 12  


As we approach the end of calendar year 2020, some employees will have accrued more than 240 hours of annual leave, and those hours above the 240-hour carryover maximum would typically be forfeited. Some employees have been unable to use any leave or as much leave as they would have liked to use this calendar year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the unfortunate circumstances that have occurred this year, at the close of leave year 2020, any annual leave hours an employee retains in excess of the 240-hour threshold will be restored for use in leave years 2021 and 2022.  Restored leave from 2020 will expire in 2023. If you are fortunate enough to have accrued excess leave, we encourage you to donate some, or all your excess hours to the annual leave bank to support your colleagues.

Executive Service Employees. Executive Service employees may typically carry no more than 40 hours of universal leave from one leave year to the next. However, for leave 2020, any universal leave above the 40-hour carryover maximum will be automatically restored for Executive Service employees’ use in leave years 2021 and 2022.

Donate to the Annual Leave Bank

COVID-19 impacted employees in ways previously unimaginable, and many employees have unexpectedly exhausted their accrued leave. We are encouraging employees who have excess leave to donate to the District’s Annual Leave Bank Program.

The District’s Annual Leave Bank Program allows employees to contribute unused, accrued annual leave to leave bank members who are experiencing a personal or family medical emergency and who have exhausted their available paid leave. Employees may donate annual leave by completing the DCSF No. ALB-01 "Application to Donate Leave to the Leave Bank" form.

Employees who wish to donate must submit the form to the appropriate agency official no later than December 4, 2020. Agencies must forward all completed forms to DCHR’s Benefits and Retirement Administration no later than December 18, 2020. The forms should be submitted to the Benefits office’s inbox at

COVID-19 Leave Restoration Policy

The District’s workforce has responded admirably to the challenges of the health emergency. To eliminate obstacles to employees retaining leave that has been unusable during the emergency, DCHR published the issuance COVID-19 Leave Restoration, a variance that relaxes and suspends the typical procedural requirements for restoring forfeited leave. Through this issuance, employees under DCHR’s personnel authority will not forfeit their accrued annual or universal leave at the close of the 2020 calendar year. Instead, employees will have their “use or lose” leave automatically restored to a separate leave account for use in 2021 and 2022. The restored leave will expire in January 2023.

NOTE: There has been no change to the expiration of annual leave accrued in leave years 2018 or 2019. Any 2018 annual leave that was subsequently restored will expire at the end of this leave year. Similarly, any 2019 annual leave that was restored will expire at the end of the 2021 leave year.


Issued by Ventris C. Gibson, Director D.C. Department of Human Resources on Nov. 25, 2020, 10:29 a.m.