For the past 16 years, complying with the Family and Medical Leave Act has been complex, but at least the law (once you figured it out) stayed the same. On Jan. 16, that all changed. That’s the day the first major overhaul of the FMLA took effect.
The regulation update came after two years during which the Department of Labor received more than 20,000 suggestions on changes from employers and employee groups.
“The new rules drastically change the way much of the FMLA works,” said Matthew Effland, an employment law attorney with Ogletree Deakins in Indianapolis. “Some changes favor employers by offering greater flexibility in administering leave. But it’s imperative that HR professionals … update their policies so they don’t inadvertently violate the law.”
To help employers, attorneys, HR professionals and managers around the country better understand how to implement the new FMLA regulations, BusinessManagementDaily.com has issued a how-to special report: FMLA Intermittent Leave: 5 guidelines on managing intermittent leave and curbing leave abuse under the new FMLA regulations.
One of the biggest employer complaints about the FMLA is the productivity problems caused by employees’ use—and abuse—of FMLA intermittent leave. The problem: Employees with chronic health problems often take FMLA leave in short increments of an hour or less.
In its new FMLA regulations, the DOL took a big step to help minimize workplace disruptions due to unscheduled FMLA absences. The DOL rules say that, in most cases, employees who take FMLA intermittent leave must follow their employers’ usual and customary call-in procedures for reporting an absence, unless there are unusual circumstances.
In light of the new FMLA regulations, make sure you amend your organization’s policies, update your employee handbook and revisit how you track FMLA intermittent leave. Download a copy of FMLA Intermittent Leave: 5 guidelines on managing intermittent leave and curbing leave abuse under the new FMLA regulations
The report shows employers, HR professionals and managers how to:
- Comply with the 9 major changes in the new FMLA regulations
- Strategically track intermittent leave
- Curb intermittent leave abuse with an 11-step plan for sniffing out suspicious requests
- Use the calendar-year method to keep intermittent leave from wreaking havoc on your employee schedules
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