Common small-company confusion: believing FMLA applies to them — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Common small-company confusion: believing FMLA applies to them

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Small employers may be hurting their productivity by offering more generous family-and-medical leave benefits than legally required.

That's the message of a new National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) study, which says as many as 88 percent of small organizations wrongly believe they're legally obligated to offer benefits under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or its state equivalents.

While such "overcomplying" can be used as a competitive advantage in recruiting and retaining, it takes a toll on daily operations. The study says covering for employees on FMLA leave usually falls to co-workers (71 percent of the time). But often the owner or owner's family covers (62 percent) or the work is simply postponed (21 percent).

Remember: The FMLA applies to organizations that have 50 or more employees who work within a 75-mile radius of the "work site." Find the NFIB study at www.nfib.com/object/sbPolls.

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