Case study: force majeure leave


Mary got a phone call from her son’s school to say that he was sick and had to be collected as soon as possible. Mary left work to collect and look after her son and returned to work the following day. Her employer asked if she wanted to take annual leave for the previous day. Mary said that she wanted to take force majeure leave instead as she was urgently needed to care for a close family member. Mary’s employer agreed but said she would to have apply in writing for the force majeure leave.

Mary applied in writing for the 1 day force majeure leave. Her application set out her personal details, her relationship to her child, the date and reason for the force majeure leave.

Some months later Mary’s father died suddenly and Mary asked if she could have a day off to go to the funeral. Mary’s employer said that unless she took annual leave she would lose a day’s pay if she went to the funeral. Mary thought that she could take force majeure leave for a day as the Parental Leave Acts 1998 - 2019 allows a maximum of 3 days force majeure leave in a 12-month period. Her employer said that unfortunately force majeure leave is only for the illness of a close family member. It does not give any entitlement to leave following the death of a close family member.

Page edited: 10 January 2023