VIC Am I Eligible for Carers Leave under Employment Law?

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21 September 2015

I have a question in regards to the eligibility of taking Carers leave. My 11 month old son is having viral infection. I was able to obtain a 2 day Carer's Medical Certificate for myself.

My employer is aware that my wife is currently not working (but in the process of seeking employment). I have been questioned on why I am required to take Carers leave since my wife is available to take care of my son. I have given the reason that my wife is struggling to take care of my son on her own due to lack of sleep from nursing my son throughout the night. Hence, I am helping to take care of him while giving my wife some much needed rest.

Am I eligible for Carers leave under Employment Law? Can my employer refuse to approve the leave based on the fact that my wife is currently not working?

Your help is very much appreciated.

Thank you.


Active Member
22 September 2015
I can't imagine why they could refuse on that basis. You have the right to request carer's leave - this is provided for under the National Employment Standards - and all that is required is that you are required to take care of a member of your immediate family (check). You must be able to provide as much notice as possible, and evidence (ie, medical certificate).

If I were your employer I'd be very hesitant to reject your claim for carer's leave!

For reference, this is contained in s97 of the Fair Work Act: