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.

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For the past 16 years, complying with the FMLA has been complex, but at least the law (once you figured it out) stayed the same. Last year, that all changed. That’s when the first major overhaul of the FMLA took effect.
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Approximately 70% of employers sponsor wellness programs designed to drive down health care costs, reduce absenteeism and promote better employee health. Wellness programs that offer premium discounts have long been required to comply with HIPAA. More recently, two other laws muddied the wellness waters: the new health care reform law and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act.
The U.S. Department of Labor has issued a broad interpretation of the definition of a “son or daughter,” clarifying that any employee who assumes the role of caring for a child will receive parental rights under the FMLA, regardless of the biological relationship. The new rule applies regardless of sexual orientation or conventional family ties.
Read a sampling of questions that our HR Specialist: Premium Plus subscribers submitted to our on-call employment attorney, Nancy N. Delogu, Esq.
Most employment laws don’t make individual employees liable for workplace violations they commit in the course of their employment. But that’s not the case with every violation. According to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, it’s unclear whether the FMLA allows such personal and individual liability—a conundrum that may soon be tested.

When an employee asks for a reasonable ADA accommodation for a disability, you don’t have to accept her first suggestion. You are under no obligation to provide the employee’s preferred accommodation if you have another one that’s also reasonable.

Some employees have heard through the legal grapevine that if the going gets tough at work, they can just get going. They believe they can up and quit—and then turn around and sue, claiming that they had no choice but to leave because they were suffering retaliation for taking some protected action. This is an example of “constructive discharge.” But conditions have to be pretty onerous before the tactic works.

The Pennsylvania Human Rights Act is the commonwealth’s companion to federal employment laws such as the ADA and Title VII. The PHRA goes beyond most federal laws because it authorizes personal liability for those who “aid and abet” an act of discrimination. And as one recent case shows, aiding and abetting can include making a serious mistake about a reasonable accommodation request.
Employers that fire employees right after they return from FMLA leave run a risk that the timing alone will be seen as proof of retaliation. Unless you are absolutely sure you can convince a judge or jury that the termination is justified, it makes sense to wait a month or so.
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