Starbucks Leave of Absence

Starbucks Leave of Absence: Navigating Employee Benefits

Are you a Starbucks employee looking to take a leave of absence? Whether it’s for personal reasons, health issues, or educational pursuits, understanding Starbucks’ leave of absence policies is crucial.

In this article, we’ll dive into the world of Starbucks, exploring the company’s background and then focusing on the various aspects of taking a leave of absence.

About Starbucks

Before delving into Starbucks’ leave of absence policies, let’s take a moment to get to know the coffee giant a bit better. Starbucks, founded in 1971 in Seattle, Washington, by three partners who shared a passion for fresh coffee, has grown into one of the world’s most recognizable and beloved coffeehouse chains.

Now that we’ve established a foundation about Starbucks let’s shift our focus to the topic at hand – Starbucks leave of absence policies.

Starbucks Leave of Absence

Starbucks values its employees and recognizes that there are times when taking a leave of absence becomes necessary. Whether it’s for personal reasons, health concerns, or educational pursuits, Starbucks offers a range of leave options to support its partners (employees).

Types of Leave

Starbucks provides various types of leave to cater to different circumstances:

1. Personal Leave of Absence

A personal leave of absence allows partners to take time off for personal reasons not covered by other leave categories. This could include taking care of a family member, handling personal matters, or pursuing a personal project.

2. Medical Leave of Absence

Medical leave is designed to support partners dealing with health issues, either their own or that of an eligible family member. It covers a wide range of medical situations, from illness and injury to maternity and paternity leave.

3. Military Leave of Absence

For partners who serve in the military, Starbucks offers military leave to fulfill their military duties while knowing their job will be waiting for them upon their return.

4. Educational Leave of Absence

Education is highly valued at Starbucks. They understand that partners may need time off to pursue further education, and they offer educational leave for this purpose.

5. Bereavement Leave

Losing a loved one is undoubtedly one of life’s most challenging experiences. Starbucks provides bereavement leave to help partners cope with the loss of a family member or close friend.

Eligibility and Benefits

Eligibility for leave and the benefits provided can vary depending on factors like your position, location, and how long you’ve been with the company. Starbucks aims to be flexible and supportive, recognizing that each partner’s situation is unique.

To determine your eligibility and the benefits you’ll receive during your leave, it’s advisable to consult the Starbucks Benefits Center or your local Human Resources representative.

The Process

Applying for a leave of absence at Starbucks is a straightforward process. Here’s a general outline of the steps involved:

  • Notification: The first step is to notify your supervisor and discuss the need for a leave of absence. Open communication is key to ensuring a smooth process.
  • Request Form: You’ll need to fill out a leave of absence request form, which can usually be found on Starbucks’ partner portal or by contacting the Benefits Center.
  • Documentation: Depending on the type of leave, you may be required to provide documentation. For medical leave, this could be a doctor’s note, while educational leave might require proof of enrollment.
  • Approval: Once you’ve submitted your request and any necessary documentation, it will be reviewed and approved by Starbucks’ leave team.
  • Communication: Starbucks will notify you of the decision and provide details regarding the duration and conditions of your leave.
  • Returning to Work: When your leave period is over, you can expect a smooth transition back to work, with your job waiting for you.

Partner Support

Starbucks recognizes that taking a leave of absence can be a challenging time for partners. To ease the transition, they offer additional support through their Employee Assistance Program (EAP). This program provides resources for partners and their families, such as counseling and assistance with personal and work-related issues.

Starbucks Employee Time Off Policies

Starbucks, as a company that values the well-being of its employees, offers a comprehensive set of time off policies. These policies ensure that partners (employees) have the opportunity to balance their work and personal lives effectively. In this article, we’ll explore Starbucks’ time off policies in detail, including vacation, holidays, bereavement, jury duty, personal days, and leaves of absence.


Retail Hourly Partners: After completing 12 months of continuous service, retail hourly partners start accruing vacation based on the actual hours worked. This accrual continues with each pay period until they reach the maximum accrual limit, as indicated below. Notably, accrued vacation carries over from year to year and is paid out when the partner separates from Starbucks.

Retail Management and Non-Retail Partners: For retail management and non-retail partners, a vacation grant is provided when they are hired. The specific amount of this grant (or accrual, in some states) depends on their length of service at Starbucks.

Maximum Vacation Accrual Limits (Hours)

Years of ServiceMaximum Accrual Limit
1 – 5 years80 hours
6 – 10 years120 hours
11+ years160 hours


Starbucks recognizes and observes several holidays throughout the year, offering partners a well-deserved break to celebrate and spend time with loved ones. The holidays observed by Starbucks include:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Juneteenth
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day

How partners are compensated for these holidays varies depending on their role within the company.


In times of grief and loss, Starbucks provides support to its partners. All partners are eligible for two days of bereavement leave when an eligible family member passes away. If overnight travel is required, the bereavement leave allowance is extended to four days.

Jury Duty

Starbucks recognizes the civic duty of jury duty and ensures that partners are not financially burdened by it. All partners are eligible for compensation for any scheduled workdays or shifts they miss due to jury or witness duty.

Personal Days

To cater to personal needs, both retail management and non-retail partners are eligible for personal days. One personal day is awarded each July 1st and January 1st. This personal day must be taken within the following six-month period.

Leaves of Absence

Starbucks offers a range of leaves of absence to support partners in various situations. These leaves include:

  • Medical Leave: For partners who are ill or injured, or need to care for an eligible family member.
  • Military Leave: Supporting partners who serve in the military, ensuring job security upon their return.
  • Personal Leave: Providing flexibility for personal reasons and projects.
  • Career Coffee Break (Sabbatical): Allowing partners to take extended time off to pursue personal and professional development.

Eligibility for these leaves varies by type and is determined by individual circumstances.

Post Conclusion

In conclusion, Starbucks’ leave of absence policies reflect the company’s commitment to its partners’ well-being. Whether it’s for personal reasons, health concerns, educational pursuits, or military service, Starbucks offers a range of leave options to support its employees.

The process of applying for a leave of absence is straightforward, and Starbucks strives to be flexible and accommodating, recognizing that each partner’s situation is unique. Additionally, the company provides partner support through its Employee Assistance Program to help partners navigate the challenges they may face during their leave.

So, if you’re a Starbucks partner and find yourself in need of a leave of absence, rest assured that Starbucks has your back, just as they’ve had for millions of partners around the world, ensuring that they can balance their personal lives with their careers, all while continuing to enjoy that delicious cup of Starbucks coffee.

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