Send FMLA forms to ‘ineligible’ employees?

Q. An employee who’s been employed since October is out on workers’ comp and will be for a while. Do I send her FMLA paperwork even though she hasn’t met the criteria of being employed for at least a year? It’s my understanding that I should send it to everyone that requests leave, and only after they return the paperwork should I determine if the person is, in fact, eligible.

A. Yes, when the employee requests FMLA leave or you have knowledge that the leave may be covered under the FMLA, you must advise the employee within five business days (either orally or in writing) of whether she is eligible for FMLA leave.

If you determine that she is not eligible, then you need to provide at least one reason for your conclusion. In this case, the notice would state that she is not eligible because she has not been employed for at least 12 months.