Can my husband take FMLA to clean up the house, because I can't?
March 2, 2013 5:41 PM Subscribe
I'm currently not working, due to what might be fibromyalgia and/or chronic fatigue (and it might not, some doctors disagree, but that's aside from the issue at hand). My husband has stepped up and taken over all house and yard work, but the mess has been building up for years as my health has been deteriorating. I'm wondering if my husband can use FMLA to take some time off to help get caught up with the house and yard work?
posted by [insert clever name here] to Work & Money (17 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
So it's not exactly taken care of me, but it's taking care of my living space, which I think is probably going to help me a lot; at the very least my emotional well being and possibly allergies as well (I have some pretty severe environmental allergies). But don't know if FMLA allows it because it isn't exactly me, per say, just the space I'm living in. He's managed to take care of me with the time he does have, though that even has been a struggle depending on how I'm doing any particular week or how stressed he is from work.
Before I got sick, I took care of the majority of house work and also did the gardening before I got ill. I've been out of work because of this for 14 or so months, but things were falling apart before then, while I was struggling trying to keep up with my job; so the house and yard have been messy long before that.
My husband has wonderfully tried to take everything on, but between taking care of me, the pets and having to learn new things like cooking and just the day to day stuff I used to do has left the house just a disaster and the yard worse. We have talked numerous times about hiring outside help, but without my paycheck, we're barely keeping ourselves afloat (and to be honest, we're still "operating" at a deficit with all my medical bills.). I'm trying to get disability, but that's a whole different battle.
Which got me thinking, the one thing untapped resource is that my husband has is a huge bank of sick leave, because he never gets sick or works through it. His sick leave rolls over each year. In fact most of what he's had to use has been this past year taking me to appointments, and still has an abundance of sick leave. He still has a huge amount of sick leave available though.
So can it be used for that? The ideal scenario that we came up with would be a block of time at the beginning, and then one day a week after that. He has enough sick time to support something like a month off and then one day a week for a year (plus a considerable amount left over). It would be just wonderful to have him here, plus getting everything in order and giving him extra time to learn more about cooking, etc . . . I think would make a world of difference in my care.
But, does FMLA allow for that sort of use? Google search was inconclusive. I am fairly confident my doctor would agree to at least some variation of signing off on FMLA for my husband to help. A month to get caught up would be heaven, but even a couple weeks and then some regular time off would make a world of difference.