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The Family and Medical Leave Act and Employee Time Off after a Stillbirth

The loss of a child through stillbirth is one of the most devastating experiences a parent can face. The grief and trauma can be overwhelming, and it can take time for parents to recover both physically and emotionally. In recognition of this, the United States labor law provides provisions for work leave after stillbirth through the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

The FMLA was signed into law in 1993 by President Bill Clinton and is designed to help employees balance their work and family responsibilities while dealing with serious health conditions. The act requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave per year for certain family and medical reasons, including the birth and care of a newborn child and the placement of a child for adoption or foster care.

One of the qualifying reasons for taking leave under FMLA is the serious health condition of an employee's child. The act defines a serious health condition as "an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves inpatient care in a hospital, hospice, or residential medical care facility, or continuing treatment by a healthcare provider."

Stillbirth, which is defined as the death of a baby after 20 weeks of pregnancy, falls under the category of a serious health condition. Therefore, if an employee experiences a stillbirth, they may be eligible for FMLA leave. This leave can be used for various reasons, including recovering from the physical effects of stillbirth, attending medical appointments, seeking counseling or therapy, or simply taking time to grieve and process the loss.

It is important to note that FMLA leave is unpaid, but employers are required to maintain an employee's health insurance coverage during the leave period. Additionally, employers may not retaliate against employees for taking FMLA leave or interfere with their right to take leave.

Losing a child through stillbirth is a deeply personal and traumatic experience that can have long-lasting effects on a person's physical and mental health. The FMLA recognizes this and allows employees to take time off from work to deal with the aftermath of stillbirth. Employers should be aware of their obligations under FMLA and strive to be supportive and compassionate to employees who have experienced this loss.

In conclusion, work leave after stillbirth is available to eligible employees under the FMLA. This leave provides employees with the necessary time and space to recover physically and emotionally from the loss of their child. Employers should be familiar with the provisions of FMLA and be prepared to provide support and understanding to employees who have experienced stillbirth.

We are proud to offer The Cenotaph Cradle, a Hospital Approved Bereavement Cradle

The Cenotaph Smart Cradle was designed specifically so parents and loved ones are afforded the time to properly say goodbye to a deceased baby. Feel free to contact me for more information.



Does your hospital have a cooling cradle?

Donating a Cenotaph Cradle to your local hospital can memorialize a baby, and help families affected by infant loss in the future gain the gift of time. 

How can we help?

Thank you! We'll be in touch.

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