What is Force Majeure?

Force Majeure leave can be given if you have a family crisis.   The Parental Leave Acts 1998 and 2006 give an employee a limited right to leave from work. It arises where, for urgent family reasons, the immediate presence of the employee is indispensable owing to an injury or illness of a close family member.

Force majeure leave does not give any entitlement to leave following the death of a close family member.

A close family member is defined as one of the following:

  • A child or adopted child of the employee
  • The husband, wife or partner of the employee
  • Parent or grandparent of the employee
  • Brother or sister of the employee
  • Person to whom the employee has a duty of care (that is, he/she is acting in loco parentis)
  • A person in a relationship of domestic dependency with the employee
  • Persons of any other class (if any) as may be prescribed

The maximum amount of leave is 3 days in any 12-month period or 5 days in a 36-month period. You are entitled to be paid while you are on force majeure leave.

You are protected against unfair dismissal for taking force majeure leave or proposing to take it.