Family Leave

I have a request for family leave for an employee to take leave for the care of their adult daughter. I am not sure if the employee is eligible to take leave for her daughter who is over the age of 18. She is not mentally impaired or physicaly impaired. However, she will be physically impaired after her surgery for a period of time and unable to care for herself. Can you clarify if the mental or physical impairment must exist as a permanent disability or does it apply, in this case, to someone who will be temporarily impaired due to their medical condition?

I appreciate assistance with this interpretation.

Thank you


  • 3 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • I don't see where FMLA applies due to the age of the daughter (over 18 and incapable of self care due to mental or physical disability). The physical disability issue must exist prior to the onset of the "serious health condition" to qualify, since the need to care for the person is magnified by the health condition. If your organization offers some type of personal LOA, this might apply; otherwise, the employee may need to use their accrued, paid leave (e.g. vacation, ETO/PTO).
  • I have had the same situation. I denied the FMLA leave on the basis that the adult daughter was not permanently mentally or physically disabled. FMLA defines a son or daughter over 18 who is "incapable of self-care because of a mental or physical disability. In my situation the Mother filed a complaint with the Wage and Hourly division. I held my ground and the complaint was dropped. Hope this will help.
  • I agree with Down-the Middle and funkysan. The mental/medical impariment had to exist before the need for the surgery. Also, since the period of incapacity as a result of the surgery is temporary, the daughter isn't covered post-op either.
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