Q: What type of certification can districts require when an employee requests family and medical leave (FML) for adoption or foster placement or to care for a newborn?
In these circumstances, it’s up to the district to determine what type of documentation is required. Examples of documents that certify a need for leave include a birth certificate, adoption or other court papers, or a letter from the placement agency.
The same guidance applies when an employee requests FML to care for a newborn child (i.e., bonding time). The sample Department of Labor (DOL) medical certification forms are not appropriate because it is not a medical event. A birth certificate would be sufficient when the parents are not married, if the employee is standing in loco parentis, or the leave is taken during the 12 months following birth.
Additional information is available in the HR Library topic, FAQs — Family Medical Leave for Birth or Placement of a Child.
April Mabry oversees HR Services training services, member library products, and the HRX newsletter. She has provided HR training and guidance to Texas public schools since 1991. Mabry was a classroom teacher for 11 years in Texas and Michigan.
Mabry has a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Michigan and certification as a professional in human resources (PHR) and is a SHRM-CP.
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