Generally, employers shouldn’t ask employees onto perform any work or deal with work-related problems. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t times you may need to speak with the employee.
Recent case: School custodian Saul Diaz needed to take a few weeks ofleave to deal with complications related to diabetes. During his last shift before going out on leave, he left the school doors open overnight. While on FMLA leave, Diaz’s supervisor called him in to discuss the breach. When he returned from leave, he was fired.
Diaz sued, alleging that calling him in during FMLA leave to discuss work was interference with his right to that leave.
The court disagreed, concluding that under the circumstances, the employer had the right to ask about the incident. (Diaz v. Elgin, No. 09-C-01649, ND IL, 2011)
- All managers can face personal liability for leave mistakes
- It's up to you to ensure employees know how much FMLA leave they have left
- Failing to track FMLA leave requests erases your right to challenge time off
- Care for healthy child wins FMLA coverage
- Sudden vigilance of company rules can look like retaliation