Layoff of Academic Staff for Reasons of Budget or Program

Layoff is the suspension of an Academic Staff member’s employment by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee during the appointment period for reasons of budget or program.

Chapter 110 of the UWM Academic Staff Personnel Policies and Procedures (ASPPP) contains the full text of the layoff policy.

Other relevant policy is found in the Wisconsin Administrative Code UWS 12.


  1. You must request a written statement of the reasons for your layoff within 20 working days of notification of your layoff if you intend to request a hearing (per UWS 12.05).
  2. You should receive the written reasons within 15 working days of your written request for them.
  3. You then have 20 working days after receiving the written reasons to request a hearing.


A request for a hearing must be based on one or more of the following factors, with material prejudice to the individual:

  • Layoff was improperly based on conduct, expressions, or beliefs on the staff member’s part which are constitutionally protected or actions which are consistent with an appropriate professional code of ethics;
  • Layoff was improperly based on factors proscribed by applicable state or federal law;
  • Layoff was based on improper consideration of the qualifications of the staff member. For the purposes of this section, “improper consideration” occurs if material prejudice resulted from any of the following:
    • The procedures required by the chancellor or board were not followed;
    • Available data bearing materially on the quality of the staff member’s actual or potential performance were not considered; or
    • Unfounded, arbitrary, or irrelevant assumptions of fact were made about work or conduct.


  1. Contact the Secretary of the University’s Office at to advise that you are requesting a hearing regarding your layoff for reasons of budget or program.
  2. Complete and submit an electronic copy of the Layoff Intake Form take Form, along with supporting documentation, to the Secretary of the University at
  3. The request for a hearing will not delay a layoff.
  4. Pre-hearing procedures are listed here.
  5. The hearing shall be held not later than 20 working days after the request except that this time limit may be extended by order of the hearing body.
  6. Parties to the hearing shall be given at least ten working days’ notice of such hearing. General hearing protocol is listed here.
  7. The hearing body shall consider whether the evidence presented establishes a prima facie case, such that a factor or multiple factors listed above (Grounds for Requesting a Hearing) did enter significantly into the layoff decision. If the hearing body finds that a prima facie case has not been established, the layoff decision shall be found to have been proper and the hearing shall be ended.
  8. If the hearing body finds that a prima facie case has been established, the appropriate administration officer for the operational area shall be entitled to present evidence to support the layoff decision, and, thereafter, the staff member may present evidence in rebuttal. Thereafter, on the basis of all the evidence presented, the hearing body shall make its determinations as follows:
    • The hearing body shall first consider whether one or more of the above specified factors improperly entered into the decision to layoff. Unless the body is convinced that such factor or factors did improperly enter into that decision, the body shall find the decision to have been proper;
    • If the hearing body is convinced that such factor or factors entered into the decision to layoff, then the body shall find that decision to be improper, unless the body is also convinced 1) that there was a bona fide program or budgetary reason(s), and that the determination of such reason(s) was made in the manner prescribed by, and in accordance with, the standards established by the institution; and 2) that the decision to layoff the particular Academic Staff member was in accordance with the provisions of s. UWS 12.02.
  9. In determining whether a bona fide budgetary or program reason existed for layoff of the appointment of the Academic Staff member concerned, the hearing body shall presume that the decision to curtail the program was made in good faith and for proper reasons. The hearing body shall not substitute its judgment or priorities for that of the administration.
  10. If the hearing body finds that the layoff was improper, it shall report this decision and its recommendation to the Chancellor and to the staff member. The Chancellor shall review the matter, decide whether the staff member should be laid off, and notify the hearing body and Academic Staff member of the decision within 20 working days of receipt of the hearing body’s recommendations. The Chancellor’s decision is final unless the Board of Regents, upon request of an Academic Staff member with indefinite status, grants review based on the record per UWS 12.05 (8).