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Calculating the time-worked threshold for FMLA eligibility

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in FMLA Guidelines,Human Resources

To be eligible for FMLA leave, an employee “must have been employed for at least 1,250 hours of service” with his or her employer during the 12 months prior to the commencement of the FMLA leave. That seems simple enough.

But in the world of FMLA administration, nothing is as simple as it seems.

For example, some employees and their lawyers have argued that any time spent out on FMLA leave shouldn’t count when determining FMLA eligibility. They say the 12-month “look back” used to count hours of service should be expanded so the only time that counts is the last 12 months spent working.

How to call time out

It would work like this: Employers trying to figure out whether the employee was eligible for FMLA leave would first look at whether the employee had already taken FMLA leave recently. If she had, they would not count those weeks or months as part of the 12-month period when adding up hours actually worked.

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