Now that school has started up again, it’s always a good time to remember that employees in Illinois have the right to take time off from work for the purpose of meeting with their child(ren)’s teachers or attending activities at their school, if these activities cannot be scheduled during non-work hours. Illinois, long ago passed what is known as the School Visitation Rights Act (the “Act”).
Under the Act, an employer must grant an employee leave of up to eight (8) hours during the school year, and no more than four (4) hours of which can be taken on the same day. There are some restrictions however.
First, before attending a school conference or activity, the employee must provide the employer with a written request for leave at least seven (7) days in advance.
Second, the leave is unpaid. An employee who takes leave under the Act may be allowed to make up the time on a different date and time if the employer approves. However, an employee is not required to make up the time taken, and an employer who retaliates against an employee for refusing to make up the time is in violation of the Act. Care should be exercised to note that an employer cannot “dock” the pay of an employee who is “exempt” under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Such an action is also a violation of the FLSA.
Third, in order to be in compliance with the Act, upon returning from the leave, a parent or guardian must submit a completed Illinois Department of Labor School Visitation Form available at:
The failure of an employee to submit the verification document within two (2) days of the visit can subject the employee to disciplinary procedures imposed by the employer for any unexcused absence from work.
With over 30 years’ experience in advising employers and employees on workplace issues, let Boznos Law work with you to ensure you are ready to meet the challenges posed by the changes to the overtime laws. Call Bill Boznos today at (630) 375-1958 or contact us through our website at www.boznoslawoffice.com