Section 3: Leave on personal grounds
Article 40 (8) (24) (40) (96)
1. An established official may, in exceptional circumstances and at his own request, be granted unpaid leave on personal grounds.
2. Without prejudice to the provisions of Article 15, the duration of such leave shall not exceed one year. Leave may be extended for further periods.
Extensions may be for periods not exceeding one year. The total length of leave on personal grounds may not exceed 15 years in the course of the official's entire career.
If, however, an official applies for such leave in order to be able:
(i) to bring up a child considered as a dependant of the official w ithin the meaning of Article 2(2) of Annex VII and who suffers from a serious mental or physical handicap recognised by the medical officer of the institution and who requires constant care or supervision; or
(ii) to follow his spouse, the latter also being an official or other servant of the Communities required in the course of his duties to establish his habitual residence at such a distance from the place of employment of the applicant official that the establishment of their conjugal home in such a place would inconvenience the applicant official in the performance of his duties,
the leave may be extended without limits, provided that, at the time of each extension, the conditions which warranted the grant of the leave continue to be fulfilled.
3. During leave, an official shall not be entitled to advancement to a higher step or promotion in grade; his membership of the social security scheme provided for in Articles 72 and 73 and cover for risks under the scheme shall be suspended.
However, an official who is not engaged in a gainful activity may, not later than one month following that in which the leave on personal grounds begins, apply to continue to be covered in accordance with those articles, - 19 provided that he bears half the cost of the contributions required to cover the risks referred to in Articles 72(1) and 73(1) for the first year of the leave on personal grounds and the full cost during the remainder of such leave.
Cover in accordance with Article 73 shall be available only if cover has been obtained in accordance with Article 72. The contributions shall be calculated by reference to the official's last basic salary. Moreover, the official who proves that he cannot acquire pension rights for another pension scheme may apply to continue to acquire further pension rights for a maximum of one year, provided that he bears the cost of the contribution equal to three times the rate laid down in Article 83(2); the contributions shall be calculated by reference to the
basic salary for the official's grade and step.
4. Leave on personal grounds shall be governed by the following rules:
(a) it shall be granted at the request of the official concerned by the appointing authority;
(b) application for extension shall be made two months before the leave expires;
(c) another person may be appointed to the post occupied by the official;
(d) on the expiry of his leave an official must be reinstated in the first post corresponding to his grade which falls vacant in his function group, provided that he satisfies the requirements for that post. If he declines the post offered to him, he shall retain his right to reinstatement when the next vacancy corresponding to his grade occurs in his function group, subject to the same proviso; if he declines a second time, he may be required to resign after the Joint Committee has been consulted. Until effectively reinstated or placed on secondment he shall remain on unpaid leave on personal grounds.