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Does the FMLA apply after a loved one has died?

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in FMLA Guidelines,Human Resources

Q. I have an employee who has been taking FMLA leave to care for her ill mother. The employee’s mother recently died, and the employee has requested an additional few weeks to attend to some issues with her mother’s estate. Can I continue to treat this time as FMLA leave?

A. No. The FMLA allows up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period to take care of an immediate family member with a serious health condition. The FMLA defines immediate family member as a spouse, child or parent.

Although your employee’s leave prior to her mother’s death would qualify for family caregiver leave, time taken after the death of the parent does not meet the definition. You may give the employee the additional leave, if you care to do so, but you can’t designate it as FMLA leave.

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