Ask The Lawyer

By Debra Roth

Q & A Session: Intermittent Leave Following Child Birth

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Q:

As a salaried manager, I informally questioned about FMLA leave for the birth of my child. I was informed that I would be approved for 12 workweeks off. I requested to our HR department to take 6 consecutive weeks off (per the doctor’s requirement). Once I was physically released to work with no restrictions, I requested to return to work only 2 days per week for an additional 6 weeks so that I was able to care for my child. I was told that they are not required to allow me to take partial time off and the decision was left up to business need and my direct supervisor. Is this legal? Once I return, am I required to work 5 days a week if I still have 6 weeks of eligible unused FMLA time?

A:

Per 29 CFR § 825.202 (c), an agency generally is not required to grant intermittent leave following child birth. Your agency may grant such a request, but it is discretionary unless you or your baby has a medical condition which justifies additional FMLA leave.

This response is written by Michael S. Causey, associate attorney of Shaw Bransford & Roth PC.

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