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.

It may be terribly annoying and very disruptive, but it is also the law: Employees eligible for intermittent FMLA leave are entitled to take that leave at the beginning of their scheduled shifts if they need to. While that may make them late for work, you can’t punish that tardiness as long as the employee follows your call-in policies and the underlying reason for being late is related to intermittent FMLA leave.

The 350 employees who work for nine Monarch Bank branches in in Virginia call in sick no more than a collective 10 days a year. That wasn’t always the case. Until five years ago—when bank execs combined sick leave and vacation time into a use-it-for-anything paid-time-off (PTO) bank—each employee was far more likely to use all of his or her 10 paid sick days rather than forfeit them.

Both the ADA and the FMLA have strict requirements for how employers must handle employee’s confidential medical information. HR professionals must know these rules to comply with both laws—and to avoid expensive legal liability for failing to do so. Here are the details you need.

The H1N1 influenza virus has added a note of urgency to the need to understand the ADA’s privacy requirements. Although some of the rules are relaxed in emergencies, employers that use confidential medical information to discriminate against workers will have to answer in court for their actions.

If you use mandatory arbitration agreements, take the extra time to make sure courts will enforce them. In New York, that means showing that the applicant or employee knew that getting and keeping her job required agreeing to arbitration of all employment disputes.

Performance improvement plans (PIPs) are great tools to help underperforming employees come up to standards. But some employees think they can file a lawsuit anytime they are placed on a PIP or are justified in quitting. As the following case shows, that’s not necessarily true.

Q. One of our employees is out sick and has already used up all her sick leave hours. Can we legally subtract from her vacation time instead?

You shouldn’t have to worry about losing a retaliation lawsuit if you consistently follow your internal rules for seeking medical information from employees who ask for sick leave. That’s true even if the employee has already complained about discrimination, either internally or to the EEOC.

Some good news: A federal court has ruled that an employer that mistakenly tells an employee he is covered by the FMLA isn’t bound by that mistake.

Employers that end up violating the FMLA—unintentionally or not—don’t face an additional problem under North Carolina law. The supposed problem: At-will employees in North Carolina can sue their employers if they’re terminated and the discharge violates public policy. But failing to follow the intricacies of federal laws and regulations doesn’t violate public policy.