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I’ll need to take weeks (or months) off from work to help my parents find and move to a Memory Care facility, and dispose of the house and 50+ years of contents to help pay for the $6K-$8K/month care. My 80-yo mom has Alzheimer’s and it’s at the stage of being beyond my 80-yo father’s dwindling abilities. They will stay together, still very much in love. All legal paperwork is in order by their attorney, naming me at POA etc. The best way I can love them is to make sure they’re both safe, as they did for me as a child! I live a 3-hour drive from my parents. My 50-yo sister lives locally to M&D but she’s stricken with Multiple Sclerosis. She’s been able to do a lot of internet and telephone legwork, and has experience in living in an assisted care facility. She knows what to look for (and more importantly what to look out for!). My question is: does the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) acknowledge the need to take time off from work to locate a facility, the move itself, of house/content disposal etc. of a parent with Alzheimer’s? Or is FMLA strictly to ‘directly care’ for a sick family member? Maybe I’ll have to color the FMLA reasons to state that I need to be present to help with ‘bathing, cooking, driving, medications’ etc. so it will be a ‘medically necessary’ absence? I don’t want to stretch any truths on a legal document, knowing that I’ll need the neurologist to sign such papers and agree to what’s on the FMLA forms. I don’t know how tough they’d be with their description of medically necessary time-off. I’m afraid to directly ask my HR department for fear of tipping them off of my upcoming absence. I’m 55-yo and would be unable to find another similar paying job in my field, like, if they choose to get rid of me now. I don’t care to show them my cards prematurely since I cannot give them a date of planned absence yet. Private business has a funny way of getting around in our company. My manager only cares that employees show up, and has actually told me he didn’t want to hear anyone’s troubles. OK then! I’m very interested in hearing comments from those who’ve successfully received workplace FLA-approval SPECIFICALLY to handle your geographically distant parent’s relocation/property due to an Alzheimer’s situation.

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If you can get FMLA all vacation and personal time gets used up. This is something you need to discuss with a supervisor /manager and HR. Managers don't know all the rules. Maybe you can take ur vacation to get them settled in. I would then take that time to evaluate what they have. Start by throwing out the "junk". Then organize what is very good from "yardsale" type stuff. There r "estate sale" people who will either come in and buy what u have and others who will set up a "tag" sale. This is what we did with my MIL. We alternated weeks. I personally cleaned out closets and sorted thru the kitchen stuff. Sil cleaned out drawers. We gave shoes and clothing away. Washed and ironed scarves, etc. BIL found a woman who came in and set the house up for a tag sale. She recieved 40percent of the proceeds. Out of our 60 percent we paid hervto clean the house to be sold. We ended up with $3000. Not bad for second hand stuff. What was left was given to charity which she handled. Each one of the sons lived in a different state. MIL in Fla, a son in Miss, Ga and NJ. She took a lot of responsibility off our shoulders. She also kept sale records which may be important if u ever need Medicaid. If a house is involved, it will need to be sold for market value. You may want to have an accessor look at it first so any problems can be documented.
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KBEllison, the company I had worked for offered FMLA to all of its employees. My parents wanted me to take more time to help them but I had already used up all of my vacation days, sick days, and days without pay. I could have used FMLA but I refused to do so. Take 3 months off, then what? My parents would still need care. What would be next? Quit work??? Heck no.

I was so glad I kept FMLA for myself as I developed a very serious illness and needed every single day of FMLA for my own time off as I was unable to return to work for three months.

Putting one's parent's house on the market For Sale and removing half a century of "stuff" was no easy task. It took me 3 months of going to get my parents house ready, and if I had used FMLA it would have been physically exhausting being at the house every day. I only went weekends as you need time to re-charge.

Do your parents have enough saved in savings/stock to pay for at least 3 to 5 months at Assisted Living before the house goes to closing once sold? If yes, then don't use FMLA. Pace the clean out. Example, bring home all of the photo albums and bins of loose photos, don't be tempted to view each photo while at the house, it's a huge time waster. Throw out whatever needs to be thrown out. Anything that is still in good shape, call out the Salvation Army or call Goodwill [some Goodwill places need a month advance notice]. Stuff no one wants, call one of those hauling places like 1800Junk.

If you want to keep items from your parents house but don't have the room, I received great advice here on the form about "swapping out". Example, my Mom had these really cute very small china bowls.... so I "swapped out" my old tins that I used for paper clips and used the very small bowls for the clips. Did the same with large sofa pictures or smaller wall pictures, took the items I was tired of, and "swapped out".

I had skipped the tag/yard sales as that would have been too time consuming/difficult for me to drag out furniture and other things into the driveway. I tried to get a professional estate sale person but the person wouldn't touch the house as they wanted houses filled with priceless antiques or very high scale furniture.... [sigh].

My Dad use to joke with me saying just bulldoze everything. There were times I wished I could :P I did hire a handyman to help me empty out the basement. My Dad had placed items up in the open ceiling that I just couldn't reach [I was passed my ladder days], and the handyman also was able to get up into the attic where Dad had saved every carton of any new item he had bought.... reason being, you never know if you need to send back that 20 year old printer in the original packing :P

So think twice about using FMLA because your parents didn't start downsizing items in their house. It wasn't your fault, not worth losing a job over, or being reassigned elsewhere with the company.
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I have pretty much managed my mom's care for 10 years without taking FMLA but it has been very taxing and I often work late nights and weekends

My mom has been in the hospital 3x since August and this holiday week of vacation for me has been spent entirely on her care as is nearly all of my vacation and sick days - placing someone in a care facility especially a memory care facility still requires a lot of attention by the responsible party - I have intentionally not taken FMLA in case I need it for her end of life care

I would encourage you to think about whether it is practical to have your parents 3 hours away as their needs escalate?
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First, make sure your employer is even subject to FMLA. It used to be employers with 50 or more employees.

Google FMLA or do a search on this site.
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FMLA requires employers covered within fmla rules to allow for up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for employees and with employees to have a job upon their return.

Although that sounds all fabulous, you may find you are placed in another position or department upon your return. Realistically what is likely to happen is that your position will be filled during those 3months you are gone so when you return your redundant or not needed anymore. Employer has to have a job for you but not necessarily your old job, salary & perks.

I have a biz and get my states FMLA directives. To me it sounds all great but it’s just lip service unless you work for a big big a Fortune 500 company that can absorb redundancy. Unless you are “key man” for the project team or company you work for, you are going to be sidelined. At 55 female your more than likely replaceable by someone for less salary. Your supervisor could care less it sounds like. I’m not saying this to be harsh but it’s the reality. I’d try to see if you can telecommute your job and limit trips to perhaps 1 week a month or longer weekends. If your motivated, house can be done emptied in couple of long weekends. If house is where you grew up, find your old HS alumni Facebook and post you need help to clear out house. There’s  gonna be someone who remembers you & Sissy who can & will deal with tag sale at house, knows Realtors, yard guys, etc as they have gone through the very same drama with thier parents or an aunt. 
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