6 or 12 weeks for new birth?

One of our employees had a baby and she qualifies for FMLA. The doctor signed a release stating she can return to work after 6 weeks, so according to our STD policy, her STD benefits end then. But doesn't she still have the right under FMLA to take off an additional 6 weeks of unpaid leave (for a total of 12) without a doctor's note, since it is still to care for, or bond with,the new child?

And if this is right, do we have to have any additional certification, or just the fact that the employee requests an additional amount of time up to 6 weeks?


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  • STD ends when the doctor releases the mother to RTW which is generally six to eight weeks if there are no complications. The mother is still entitled to the remainder of her FMLA leave. No additional documentation is required, as you know that she was out for pregnancy, you know she had the baby and you know the date the baby was born.
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