FMLA: What to expect when they’re expecting — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

FMLA: What to expect when they’re expecting

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When an employee becomes pregnant, she has the right to take leave under the federal FMLA. Eligible employees can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected FMLA leave for the birth, adoption or foster care of a child.

To qualify for FMLA leave, an employee must have worked for the same employer for at least 12 months (not necessarily continuously) and clocked at least 1,250 hours of service (slightly more than 24 hours per week) during the 12 months leading up to FMLA leave.

Any organization with 50 or more employees working within a 75-mile radius of the work site must comply with the FMLA.

New parents—both mothers and fathers—can take FMLA leave any time in the first 12 months after a child’s arrival.

However, employees must conclude their leave before the 12-month period ends. Presumably, the idea is that if a working mother takes her 12 weeks and then returns to work, the father can care for the child for the next 12 weeks.

What if both parents work for the same company? They’re entitled to a combined total of 12 weeks’ leave after the birth or adoption.

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