DOL Opinion: Employee May Utilize FMLA Leave for Treatment-Related School Meetings

Last year the Department of Labor (DOL) further defined how employees may take Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave to care for children with a serious health condition. mother requested FMLA leave to attend her children's Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings at school. The children had serious health conditions, and the employer previously approved FMLA leave to care for the children but denied the mother’s request to attend the IEP meetings. The DOL issued an opinion that FMLA leave may be used for IEP meetings if those meetings help the parent in making medical or care decisions regardless of whether or not a medical provider was present. Employers should consider the purpose of the school meeting and whether it’s related to the child’s treatment of a serious health condition before granting FMLA leave.