In 2020, the Iowa Board of Regents waived the cap for Family Caregiving Leave through August 31, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Effective September 1, 2021, the annual family caregiving leave cap in place prior to the pandemic was reinstated. The Family Caregiving Leave program provides an allowance of up to 40 hours (prorated for part-time) each year. Employees also retain any unused allowance from the previous calendar year, or up to 80 hours total (prorated for part-time). 

In most cases, Family Caregiving Leave is subtracted from an employee's sick leave. Employees must have adequate accrued sick leave to cover family caregiving absences. If an employee does not have adequate sick leave, Family Caregiving Leave may be recorded as vacation or taken as unpaid leave.

Additional leave programs may affect how leave for family caregiving purposes is used or coded:

  • Board of Regents (BOR) Paid Sick Leave: In 2020, the board approved an additional 80 hours of paid sick leave (prorated for part-time) for employees to use during COVID-related events. Employees who have not used this full allotment of BOR leave can continue to use it for COVID-related family caregiving through June 30, 2022.
  • Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA): Family Caregiving Leave and FMLA are separate programs—not all leave for family caregiving will qualify under FMLA. FMLA covers more absences for serious health conditions and defines family members more narrowly than Family Caregiving Leave. When events meet criteria for both programs, they will be administered concurrently.

See the main Family Caregiving Leave page for general information and definitions, including the definition of terms like immediate family member

Reporting Codes

 

Non-COVID related Family Caregiving Leave time reporting codes:

03        Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave

53        FMLA Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave

 

COVID-related Family Caregiving Leave time reporting codes:

09        COVID Family Care

69        FMLA COVID Family Care

Leave Scenarios

Below are a few leave scenarios detailing eligibility for family caregiving leave and how to code the hours on the time record effective September 1, 2021:

Leave Scenarios

An employee must provide care of and necessary attention to ill or injured members of their immediate family. The leave instance is not COVID related.

The employee did not use any Family Caregiving Leave in 2021. Effective January 1, 2022, the employee has 40 hours to carry over from 2021 and 40 hours for 2022, allowing 80 hours of family caregiving leave during the remaining months of calendar year 2022. 

Scenario 1: Employee uses 45 hours of leave for family caregiving during the month of January 2022. The event does not qualify for FMLA.

  • Record 45 hours of code 03 (Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave) on the time record.

Scenario 2: Employee uses 35 hours of leave for family caregiving during the month of January 2022. The event qualifies for FMLA and FMLA documentation is complete.

  • Record 35 hours of code 53 (FMLA Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave) on the time record

An employee must provide care of and necessary attention to ill or injured members of their immediate family. The leave instance is not COVID related.

The employee has already used their full allotment of Family Caregiving Leave for 2022 and has no Family Caregiving Leave available from 2021.  The employee is no longer eligible for Family Caregiving Leave as they have used their available hours for 2021 and 2022. 

Scenario 1: Employee takes 20 hours of leave for family caregiving during the month of March 2022. The event is not eligible for FMLA.

  • Record 20 hours of code 01 (Vacation) if available vacation balance is sufficient to cover absence.
  • If the employee does not have enough available vacation balance, use unpaid leave for the remaining leave hours.

Scenario 2: Employee uses 25 hours of leave for family caregiving during the month of April 2022. The event is eligible for FMLA and FMLA documentation is complete.

  • Record 25 hours of code 51 (FMLA Vacation) if available vacation balance is sufficient to cover absence.
  • If the employee does not have a sufficient vacation balance, use unpaid leave for the remaining leave hours.

The employee will be eligible for 40 hours of non-COVID family caregiving leave again beginning January 1, 2023.

An employee must provide care of and necessary attention to ill or injured members of their immediate family. The leave instance is COVID related.

The employee has Board of Regents Paid Sick Leave (BOR) remaining. To date, they've used 55 hours of BOR leave, which leaves 25 hours available for COVID-related events.

Scenario 1: Employee uses 20 hours of leave for COVID-related family caregiving during the month of January 2022. The event is not eligible for FMLA.

  • Record 20 hours of code 09 (COVID Family Care) on the time record

Scenario 2: Employee uses 30 hours of leave for COVID-related family caregiving during the month of January 2022. The event is eligible for FMLA and FMLA documentation is complete.

  • Record 25 hours of code 69 (FMLA COVID Family Care) on the time record.
  • Record 5 hours of code 53 (FMLA Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave) on the time record.

Scenario 3: Employee uses 30 hours of leave for COVID-related family caregiving during the month of March 2022. They have used all available non-COVID Family Caregiving Leave for 2022. The event is not eligible for FMLA.

  • Record 25 hours of code 09 (COVID Family Care) on the time record.
  • Record 5 hours of code 01 (Vacation) if sufficient balance is available.
  • If the staff member does not have enough available vacation balance, use unpaid leave for the remaining leave hours.

The employee will be eligible for 40 hours of non-COVID family caregiving leave again beginning January 1, 2023.

An employee must provide care of and necessary attention to ill or injured members of their immediate family. The leave instance is COVID related.

The staff member has used their entire allotment of Board of Regents Paid Sick Leave hours—no BOR hours remain available. The employee has 40 hours of Family Caregiving Leave available, as they had not previously used non-COVID related Family Caregiving Leave in 2022.

Scenario 1: Employee uses 30 hours of leave for COVID-related family caregiving leave in the month of January 2022. The event is not eligible for FMLA.

  • Record 30 hours of code 03 (Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave) on the time record as the employee no longer has code 09 BOR hours available.

Scenario 2: Employee uses 50 hours of leave for COVID-related family caregiving during the month of January 2022. The event is eligible for FMLA and FMLA documentation is complete.

  • Record 40 hours of code 53 (FMLA Sick Leave – Family Caregiving Leave) on the time record.
  • Record 10 hours of code 51 (FMLA Vacation) on the time record if sufficient balance is available.
  • If the staff member does not have enough available vacation balance, use unpaid leave for the remaining leave hours.

The employee will be eligible for 40 hours of Family Caregiving Leave again beginning January 1, 2023.

An employee must provide care of and necessary attention to ill or injured members of the employee’s immediate family. The leave instance is COVID related.

The employee has used their entire allotment of Board of Regents Paid Sick Leave hours—no BOR hours remain available. The employee also used their full allotment of non-COVID Family Caregiving Leave for 2022. The employee is no longer eligible for Family Caregiving Leave during 2022. 

Scenario 1: Employee uses 25 hours of leave for COVID-related family caregiving during the month of April 2022. The event is not eligible for FMLA.

  • Record 25 hours of code 01 (Vacation) on the time record if sufficient balance is available.
  • If the staff member does not have enough available vacation balance, use unpaid leave for the remaining leave hours.

Scenario 2: Employee uses 16 hours of leave for family caregiving during the month of March 2022. The event is eligible for FMLA and FMLA documentation is complete.

  • Record 16 hours of code 51 (FMLA Vacation) on the time record if sufficient balance is available.
  • If the staff member does not have enough available vacation balance, use unpaid leave for the remaining leave hours.

The employee will be eligible for 40 hours of Family Caregiving Leave again beginning January 1, 2023.

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