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Family and Medical Leave Act and adoption

The Family and Medical Leave Act is in place to give employees time away from work when they need it the most. For example, it's commonly used when a person is dealing with a serious health concern, such as cancer treatment.

But did you know that the Family and Medical Leave Act can also grant you time off for the placement of a child into your family via adoption? Just the same as when you give birth, you may want to take time away from work as a means of bonding with your new child.

Here is something else to remember: You have the right to take a leave within one year of the child being placed. Some people take the leave before the actual placement, while others wait until the child is brought home in order to do so.

When or if you take FMLA leave depends on your particular situation.

If you are interested in taking a leave for an adoption, remember that it has to be done consecutively, unless your employer agrees to an intermittent leave.

Once 12 months has passed after the placement, you are no longer eligible to take time away under the Family and Medical Leave Act. At that point, you will have to use your own vacation or personal time.

It is nice to know that the Family and Medical Leave Act covers adoption, as this is something that a growing number of people are looking into. Those who plan on adopting a child should look into this option, including when it makes the most sense to take the leave.

Source: United States Department of Labor, "Qualifying Reasons for Leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act," accessed March 28, 2016

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