FMLA Guidelines

We’ll assist you in tracking and managing intermittent FMLA leave … fighting FMLA fraud and FMLA abuse … and managing FMLA in general.

Beyond mastering FMLA regulations on intermittent leave, we’ll share FMLA guidelines on how to curb FMLA abuse, and dramatically improve your overall FMLA compliance.

Q. We have an employee out on FMLA leave and have just learned that she will not be able to return to work when her FMLA entitlement expires. Should we go ahead and send her a termination notice now?

Employees who have worked for their organizations for more than one year total and have worked at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months preceding their need for FMLA leave are eligible for unpaid FMLA leave for their own serious health condition or that of a relative. If employees haven’t reached 1,250 hours, they’re not eligible. That’s why it’s important to track every hour worked.

If the workplace rumor mill tells you that one of your managers or supervisors may harbor antiquated ideas about equality, watch out—especially if he or she has any input into hiring and promotion decisions. Instead, investigate the rumors and take a look at past hiring practices.

The new FMLA regulations that took effect Jan. 16 require you to post the newly updated FMLA poster in your workplace. Advice: Ignore ads from vendors selling the posters. Download them free ...

While just calling in sick without further explanation may not trigger an employer’s obligation to see whether an employee needs FMLA leave, the more details she provides, the better the chances that the information constituted FMLA notice, which would require the employer to follow up.

Don’t throw out those leave requests or FMLA certifications—especially if you rejected any requests—until at least three years have passed. Employees have up to three years to file an FMLA lawsuit if the alleged violation was willful—and they don’t have to go to the EEOC or a state discrimination agency first.

There’s a widespread understanding of the grave impact domestic violence has on personal lives and the havoc it wreaks on families and communities. Now more attention is being paid to its effect at work. Sometimes, incidents of domestic violence actually happen in the workplace. But the impact goes far beyond immediate safety concerns.

Good news from the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals: If you have a system for employees to call in sick, you can require everyone to use it—even employees on approved intermittent FMLA leave. The trick is to make sure that the employee taking FMLA leave understands she still must call in.

Michael Villafana, a registered nurse at the Highland Pines Nursing Home in Clearwater, Fla., called in sick the day before Thanksgiving. Then he allegedly showed up at work later that day—to rob the place.

Q. We have two offices in two different states. In one office, we have a sick leave policy in place because we have exempt employees, and the FLSA requires us to have the policy if we want to dock exempt employees for sick time after they exhaust their sick days. All employees at the second office are hourly, and they rarely call in sick. Can we have a policy at one location and not at another?