May an employer count the time when the business is closed due to inclement weather against an employee's allotment of Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave?

Author: XpertHR Editorial Team

It depends.

Closures of one or more full weeks. If an employer's business activities have temporarily ceased and employees are not expected to report for work for one or more full weeks (e.g., an employer closes its business because its roof collapsed under heavy snowfall), none of those days count against the amount of leave used by an employee out on FMLA leave at the time, even if the employee would not have been able to perform their job duties due to the closure (i.e., a business closes for one full week during an employee's 12 weeks of FMLA leave, the employee only uses 11 weeks of FMLA leave).

Closures of less than one full week. If an employer's business is closed for less than one full week, the rule for calculating FMLA leave during a week in which a holiday falls would likely apply. Under that rule, when an employee uses FMLA leave in increments of less than one week, a holiday falling within a particular week cannot be counted against the employee's FMLA entitlement, unless the employee was otherwise scheduled and expected to work during the holiday.