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Can You Use FMLA for Mental Health?

Can You Use FMLA for Mental Health?

Navigating the complexities of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) can be daunting, especially when it comes to mental health conditions. It is important to note that FMLA sometimes does extend to cases involving mental health, allowing employees to take time off work to manage their condition or care for a family member. At Marshall Forman & Schlein LLC, our experienced attorneys are equipped to guide you through this process, ensuring your rights are upheld.

Who Qualifies for FMLA Leave?

FMLA leave is available to eligible employees dealing with their own serious health condition or caring for a spouse, child, or parent with a serious health condition. A serious health condition, under FMLA, can include mental health conditions. However, these conditions must meet certain criteria, such as requiring inpatient care or ongoing treatment by a healthcare provider. Chronic conditions like anxiety, depression, or dissociative disorders that cause occasional periods of incapacity may also qualify if they require regular treatment.

Obtaining FMLA Leave for Mental Health

The process of acquiring leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) involves submitting a certification from a healthcare provider. This certification should provide enough information to support the need for leave, such as the nature of the medical condition or the need for care of a family member. While a diagnosis is not explicitly required, the certification should include sufficient details to establish the legitimacy of the claim. The employer may request this certification to ensure compliance with the FMLA and to verify the validity of the leave request.

Reasons for Granting FMLA for Mental Health Conditions

FMLA leave can be granted for various reasons related to mental health. An employee may take up to 12 work weeks of leave if a serious mental health condition renders them unable to perform their essential job duties. FMLA leave can also extend to employees providing care for a family member unable to work or perform regular daily activities due to a serious mental health condition.

Furthermore, FMLA allows parents to care for an adult child suffering from a mental health condition that qualifies as a disability. Conditions like major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and schizophrenia can be considered “substantially limiting,” hence qualifying as disabilities under the FMLA.

Importance of Mental Health and Seeking Legal Help

Taking FMLA leave for mental health reasons is essential for maintaining your well-being and supporting your loved ones in their times of need. However, understanding your rights and navigating the complexities of FMLA can be challenging.

At Marshall Forman & Schlein LLC, we understand the law and are equipped with over 50 years of combined experience to guide you through this process. We are committed to fighting for your rights, both in and out of the courtroom. If you have any questions about FMLA and mental health, call us for a free initial evaluation of your case. Our team of experienced attorneys will provide you with an informed legal opinion and develop a step-by-step plan for the best outcome. Let us take the stress out of your legal process.

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