If an Employee Chooses Virtual Schooling for their Child, are they Eligible for Expanded FMLA?
Common HR Questions
With school being back in session, both virtually and in-person, this has caused concerns for both employees and their employers.
In the latest installment in our new video series, Coffee and Compliance, MEA experts Maria Bonelli and Jane Disher, sit down virtually to discuss when employees are eligible for expanded FMLA based on schooling options for their child.
Employer Question: If a school is offering the choice of in-person or remote schooling, and the employee chooses not to send their child to in-person, are they eligible for expanded FMLA?
MEA Expert: That’s a question we are hearing from many of our members. If a school is offering in-person instruction and the employee chooses to have their child participate in virtual learning, they would not be covered for expanded FMLA under the Families First Act.
Many schools are now offering a hybrid model, where school may be in session two days a week for in-person instruction and then virtual learning three days a week. An employee would be eligible for expanded FMLA for the three days of virtual learning, but it’s also important to remember that if an employee is able to work remotely, they would not be eligible for expanded FMLA.
Employer Question: What advice do you have for employers faced with this situation?
MEA Expert: It’s important for employers to be flexible about how and when work gets done in order to accommodate this unprecedented time that we’re in. The other piece of advice I would give, because we’ve seen this with many other COVID related issues, is that it’s important to be flexible as employers, schools and parents adapt to changing circumstances.
Be sure to keep an eye out for more videos in our Coffee & Compliance Series that will highlight top-of-mind compliance issues as we navigate through the new normal!
*This alert is provided for general informational purposed only and does not constitute legal advice.