My father has had a stroke and is critically ill. The doctors say that he has very little time left. Am I entitled to leave from work to be with him?
If you have a family crisis, the Parental Leave Acts 1998 and 2006 give an employee a limited right to leave from work. This is known as force majeure leave. You can take force majeure leave where, for urgent family reasons, your immediate presence is necessary because a close family member is ill or has been injured.
The definition of a close family member includes a child or adopted child, a spouse or partner and a parent or grandparent.
The maximum amount of leave is three days in any 12-month period or five days in a 36-month period. You are entitled to be paid while you are on force majeure leave. Your employer may grant you further leave.
However force majeure leave does not give any entitlement to leave following the death of a close family member. If your father dies following his illness, you don’t have a statutory right to leave after his death.
You may be entitled to compassionate leave under your contract of employment or custom and practice in your workplace. Alternatively, you may be given some bereavement leave at your employer’s discretion.
Further information about force majeure leave is available from the Workplace Relations Commission's Information and Customer Service Lo-call: 1890 80 80 90 or from the Citizens Information Centre below.
Further information is available from the Citizens Information Centre below.
Know Your Rights has been compiled by Boyle Citizens Information Centre which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel: 0761 07 6330
Address: Elphin Street, Boyle, Co. Roscommon
Information is also available online at citizensinformation.ie and from the Citizens Information Phone Service - 0761 07 4000