Ensure handbook doesn’t make FMLA promises you can’t keep

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in Employment Law,FMLA Guidelines,HR Management,Human Resources

An Indiana employer must now respond to charges it misled employees when it promised FMLA benefits in its handbook, even though the company is too small to be covered by the FMLA.

The case, recently decided by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, shows the problems that arise when employers promise more than they are willing to deliver in their employee handbooks. Even an employer savvy enough to write a handbook in a way that does not create a contract still must keep all the promises it makes in the handbook. When employees rely on employer promises, the promises can become a contract in some states.

The 7th Circuit’s decisions apply in Illinois, so employers here should pay particular attention to this case.

It started with a shoulder injury

Steven Peters, a therapeutic specialist for pharmaceutical maker Gilead Sciences in Indiana, suffered a shoulder injury at work. Almost a year later, he aggravated the injur...(register to read more)

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