Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act, often referred to as FMLA, is an important law that protects employees who decide to take leave for family and medical reasons. FMLA is unpaid, job-protected leave. Parents who decide to take time off of work to be with children who are receiving medical or psychiatric care or who are recuperating from serious medical conditions can take FMLA leave. 

FMLA permits mothers and fathers to take an unpaid leave of absence and still have a job to come back to. Under FMLA, employees must be restored to their original job or to an equivalent job with equivalent pay. Employers are also required to continue group health insurance coverage under the same terms and conditions while an employee is on leave. FMLA provides an entitlement of up to 12 weeks during any 12-month period. FMLA applies to the following types of employers: 

    • State, local, and federal employers
    • Public or private elementary and secondary schools
    • Private-sector companies with 50 or more employees in 20 or more workweeks in the current or preceding calendar year 


In order to eligible for FMLA benefits, an employee must have worked for a covered employer for at least 12 months and have worked at least 1,250 hours over the 12-month period immediately preceding the leave. Furthermore, an employee must work in the United States or in any territory or possession of the United States where the employer has at least 50 employees within 75 miles. 


What Can Family or Medical Leave Be Used For? 

Eligible employees may take family and medical leave for these reasons: 

    • To care for a son, daughter, spouse, or parent with a serious health condition
    • The birth of a son or daughter
    • The placement of a son or daughter with the employee for adoption or foster care
    • A serious health condition prevents the employee from performing essential job duties 


If the cause of leave is predictable, the employee must provide 30 days of notice and a sufficient amount of information so that the employer can determine whether FMLA applies to their request for leave. The employer may also request a medical certification from a doctor if the employee has a serious medical condition. When the leave is foreseeable less than 30 days in advance, the employee must provide notice as soon as possible under the circumstances.


Have You Been Discriminated Against Because of Family or Medical Leave?

Under FMLA regulations, it is illegal for an employer to fire or discriminate against employees for exercising the rights provided to them by FMLA. If you have been denied your right to family medical leave, have suffered retaliation or harassment for taking leave, or you were denied your job after returning from leave, you could file a complaint or lawsuit against your employer. 

Jones Law Group has helped many employees obtain their rights to medical leave and receive damages if their rights have been violated. Call (614) 545-9998 or contact us online  for a free evaluation of your case. 


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