The Family Medical Leave Act gives eligible employees up to 12 weeks off work in a 12-month period of time, according to the United States Department of Labor. This is only for certain situations, such as following the birth of a child or when an employee adopts a child, or in case of illness.
There are certain rules and eligibility requirements that must be followed to earn time off with the Family Leave Medical Act, commonly referred to as FMLA, notes the United States Department of Labor. For example, if an employee is taking time off following the birth of a child or to care for a new baby, it has to be within a year of the child's birth. If the time off is due to adoption or foster care, the time off must be within a year of placement, according to the United States Department of Labor.
If the employee is taking time off due to a serious health condition, that condition must be causing lack of proper function of his job. It is also allowable to use FMLA to care for certain family members who have serious illnesses.
It is important to note that not all employees are eligible for FMLA benefits, says U.S. News & World Report. The employee usually needs to have been with the same employer for a minimum of 12 months before needing time off. There are also rules about how many hours must be worked, typically a minimum of 1,250 hours of work within the 12-month period. Part-time workers might need to wait a little longer in order to accumulate enough hours for the benefits.