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Track FMLA return history to show you don’t retaliate

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in FMLA Guidelines,Human Resources

Track every employee’s use of FMLA leave and what happens when he returns to work.

Why? If you happen to terminate the employee shortly after he returns from approved FMLA leave, he may claim retaliation.

But if you can show the court that you let him return many times in the past, it looks more like a coincidence that you terminated him this time.

Recent case: Wayne had a terrible attendance record. He took a series of short FMLA leaves on occasions when his family members became ill or incapacitated.

Shortly after returning from his last FMLA leave, he was terminated for ac­­cumulated and unrelated tardy arrivals. He alleged retaliation for taking leave.

The court said that made no sense because his employer had previously allowed him to return many times before. (Williams v. New York City Health, No. 11-CIV-9456, SD NY, 2012)

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