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Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson

Employment Law Regarding Parental Leave

By Dan Atkerson on September 18, 2015

Maternity leaveThe birth of your child, or the day of adoption, should be the brightest point of your life. Ask any mother or father what the best day of their life was and they will probably respond with “the day my kid was born.” Unfortunately, some new parents still have a solitary rain cloud trying to rain on their special day.

The Family and Medical Leave Act

New parents that struggle to get parental leave can sometimes run into problems when their employers refuse to adhere to the law. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) affords new parents job protection for taking time off in a number of situations including the following:
  • During Pregnancy – If there are complications during the pregnancy that prohibit you from working, then the time off you need can be covered by the FMLA
  • Maternity Leave – New mothers can have up to 12 work weeks off during a calendar year to care for a newborn, newly adopted, or recently placed foster child
  • Paternity Leave – Some employers, and even some employees, wrongfully assume that only mothers are allowed parental leave. The FMLA affords new fathers the same benefits as new mothers.
Parents may also spread out the 12 weeks if they can work something out with the employer. For example, a new father may take off a couple weeks when his child is born and then take the rest later, as long as it’s within a year of the child’s birth.

Parents who both work for the same company may be forced to take a combined 12 week leave as opposed to each of them getting 12 weeks. This doesn’t include any medical leave the mother may need to take due to her own health conditions.

Don’t let an employer take up valuable time that could be spent with your new child. If you believe that your employer is violating your right to parental leave under the FMLA, give us a call and we may be able to help make things right.

Atkerson Law FirmDallas employment lawyer

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