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Minnesota FMLA

All Employers

Parental Leave

Parental leave applies to public and private sector employees with 21 or more employees at one site.

  • To be eligible, an employee must have worked for the employer for 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the request for leave.
  • To be eligible, an employee must also have worked for "an average number of hours per week equal to half the full-time equivalent position in the employee's job position as defined by the employer's personnel policies or practices".
  • Employers must provide employees with up to six weeks of unpaid leave following the birth or adoption of a child.
  • A "child" is defined as an individual under 18 years of age or an individual under age 20 who is still attending secondary school.
  • Leave must begin within six weeks after birth or adoption unless the child has an extended hospital stay longer than the mother. In such cases, leave must begin within six weeks after the child leaves the hospital
  • Employers must also establish a reasonable unpaid break time for employees to express breast milk for their infant children. If possible, the break time should run concurrently with any break time already provided. This type of break time is not required if it would unduly disrupt the employer's operations.

Continuation of Benefits

The employer must maintain insurance benefits while the employee is on leave, however the employer is not responsible for the cost of continued coverage during the period of leave.


When an employee returns from parental leave, he or she must be restored to his or her former position or equivalent. If the leave was for more than one month, the employee must notify the employer at least 2 weeks before returning from leave.

Use of Sick Leave

Personal sick leave benefits may be used for an illness of or injury to an employee's child "for such reasonable periods as the employee's attendance with the child may be necessary". The terms of leave for employee's own illness are applied to parental leave.

Personal sick leave benefits do not include short or long term disability or other salary continuation benefits.

An employee returning from parental leave must be restored to his or her former position.

School Visits

  • All Minnesota employers are required to grant eligible employees unpaid leave of up to 16 hours during any 12-month period to attend school conferences or participate in school-related activities associated with the employee's child if the activities cannot be scheduled during non-work hours.
  • To be eligible, employees must have worked for their employer for an average of 20 hours a week for the 12 months immediately preceding the request.
  • Accrued paid leave may be used for unpaid school leave.
  • Employees must provide reasonable notice, when possible, before taking leave.
  • Employees should make every effort to schedule leave at a time that will provide minimum disruption to the operations of the employer.

Family Military Leave

  • A minimum of 10 days unpaid leave must be made available to an employee whose immediate family member is injured or killed in active military duty.
  • The employee must give as much advance notice as practicable.
  • Except when it would unduly disrupt the operations of the employer, employees may take up to 10 days unpaid leave when an immediate family member is called to active military service for a war or an emergency.
  • The employer may limit the amount of leave to the time necessary to attend a send-off or homecoming ceremony, not to exceed one day.

Medical Donations

  • Public employers with 20 or more employees must grant paid time off for organ donation.
  • All employers with 20 or more employees must grant paid time off for blood marrow donation.
  • Combined length of either donation may not exceed 40 hours without employer's consent.
  • An employer may require verification by a physician regarding length and purpose of leave.
  • If it is determined that the employee is ineligible for donation, leave already taken is not forfeited.
FMLA laws in Minnesota

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