A maternity leave letter request is generally required for your personnel file when you're applying for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The letter should contain the start date and the date she expects to be back to work. Maternity leave rules at your company may require additional information, so it's a good idea to check with human resources a few months before your due date to find out what details your should include.
Basic Structure for a Maternity Leave Letter
Treat this as a business letter and keep it formal and to the point. Begin by writing an introduction that includes the date you expect to leave and the date you expect to return. Allow some leeway on either end in case your child arrives a few days early or late.
Remember that someone will need to cover for you while you're gone. After the introduction, include a section outlining the projects that will be completed before you leave. Write out the name of the project and any additional work that needs to be finished. It's also a good idea to spell out work coverage. While this is not mandatory, it will be easier for your employer to grant your leave if she knows you have substitutes to complete any unfinished projects. Write out the project name and a short paragraph or two explaining how that particular project will be managed. If you have another employee willing to work on the project, include that information.
In the next section, write out how much leave (in weeks) your work coverage plan allows. Denote what part of your leave is covered under the FMLA and what part is paid leave. You may be able to use vacation and sick time to add a few more days of paid leave.
Nest, outline your accessibility while you're away. If you will call in, let your employer know how often you will call and who you will be checking with. If, after a certain date, you will be available by e-mail or phone for questions or consultations, let your employer know. If you plan to complete some work while you're at home, spell out what you'll be able to do and when the work should be completed. Make sure to tell your employer that completion dates are tentative, and outline a backup plan in case you can't get something fini
Outline your transition for returning to work. This is optional and should be used if you are going to be job sharing or working a shorter workweek. Whether you plan on just returning to work, or if you are going to transition from part time to full time, include the date you will be returning to full duties.
Finally, summarize the reasons for your leave and include a sentence that states you offer this comprehensive proposal and that the proposal considers employee needs and employer needs. Include times when you are available to discuss your proposal letter and absence.
Although there are federal protections for maternity leave in the United States, there are still situations where you could lose your job while out on leave. Learn your rights under the law and steps you can take to keep your job secure.
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If you plan to take a maternity leave from your job, there are some things you should know. U.S. law guarantees no paid leave at all to new parents, so you will have to do a bit of research to understand your rights and make a plan for your leave.