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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HR Law 101: Since 1993, the Family and Medical Leave Act has provided eligible employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for the birth, adoption or foster care of a child; caring for a child, spouse or parent with a serious health condition; or convalescence after an employee’s own serious health condition ...

An employee may give you any number of reasons for not wanting to take FMLA leave. If the employee refuses to provide certification, remind them that they will be held to your company’s standard attendance policy and excessive absences may result in termination.
Always double-check that an employee who has requested FMLA leave is actually eligible. It’s crucial if you operate out of several states or have multiple offices, since some locations may not be large enough to require FMLA coverage.

HR Law 101: The National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 granted new leave rights to family members of men and women who serve in the military. Because the NDAA amended the FMLA, the changes apply only to employers with 50 or more employees.

Disabled employees who need time off to deal with a disability and who don’t have FMLA, sick or vacation leave may still be entitled to more time off. That’s because the ADA allows employees to take additional time off as a reasonable accommodation. Be sure your employee handbook accounts for this possibility.
Q. The daughter of one of our executive assistants was recently diagnosed with an illness that will require extensive treatment. Her boss offered her “a few extra weeks of paid vacation” to care for her daughter. He told her this before HR had an opportunity to talk to her about options for time off. We don’t think the special treatment would be received well by staff outside of the executive wing. Do we have to provide what he promised even if it’s against company policy? Is it even legal?
Not everyone has an easy pregnancy, birth and recovery. Em­­ployers that refuse to recognize this reality and don’t offer accommodations for unusual circumstances face potential liability under both the FMLA and the ADA. What’s more, HR professionals and supervisors may find themselves personally liable for mistakes they make along the way.
When employees have a serious health condition that qualifies them for FMLA leave, employers have the right to some basic information. But you have to ask for it in the right way and at the right time.
Amendments to Minnesota’s Par­­ent­­ing Leave Act took effect Aug. 1, expanding the definition of “covered family members” from just children. Now the definition includes not only minor children and those attending school (up to age 20), but also the employee’s own spouse, siblings, adult children, parents, grandparents and step-parents.
Employers with 50 or more employees within 75 miles must provide FMLA leave. If they have multiple locations, they must often provide leave to some em­­ployees but not others. If that’s your situation, beware making blanket handbook statements about FMLA leave eligibility.
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