Employees who request
But merely asking about leave or requesting paperwork isn’t enough to form the basis of an FMLA claim.
Recent case: Jack Fischer worked as a teacher and has multiple sclerosis. While considering treatment options, Fischer asked an administrative assistant for . He never said he might need time off, and he never actually filled out the forms.
Then Fischer claimed the school district started disciplining him—and he said that was retaliation for asking for FMLA forms.
But the court dismissed his lawsuit, reasoning that merely asking for the forms isn’t a protected activity. (Fischer v. NYC Department of Education, No. 06-CV-3964, ED NY, 2009)
- Paying staff for volunteer work = lower absenteeism
- Don't let manual become a contract—Make sure employees sign 'At-Will' notice
- Check calendar when employee files EEOC complaint
- Feel free to discipline or fire if it's warranted -- regardless of employee's FMLA status
- Department of Labor to study FMLA usage; may signal more upcoming regulatory changes