Archives: FMLA

Subscribe to FMLA RSS Feed

With Broad FMLA “Benefits” Interpretation, Sixth Circuit Faults “No-Fault” Attendance Policy

Employers must carefully navigate Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) pitfalls when administering attendance policies.  As illustrated by the Sixth Circuit’s decision in Dyer v. Ventra Sandusky, LLC, No. 18-3802 (6th Cir. Aug. 8, 2019), one misstep can lead to potential FMLA liability. Background Dyer worked as a technician for automotive supplier Ventra Sandusky.  Dyer … Continue Reading

Employer’s Additional Notice Requirement for Requesting FMLA Leave Dooms Attempt to Dismiss Employee’s Interference Claims

Employees who take FMLA leave may be required to comply with the employer’s usual and customary notice and procedural requirements for requesting leave. If the employee does not follow these requirements, the employer may delay or deny FMLA-protected leave.  But what happens if the employer’s policy has different notice requirements for FMLA leave than for … Continue Reading

Oregon Joins Growing Number of States Requiring Paid Family and Medical Leave

Just hours before the constitutionally-mandated end of Oregon’s state legislative session (June 30 at midnight), the Oregon Senate voted to pass HB 2005—which will provide paid family and medical leave to eligible employees beginning January 1, 2023.  HB 2005 now heads to the desk of Governor Kate Brown, who has already said she intends to … Continue Reading

What Am I Doing Wrong?? Common FMLA Mistakes

“What did I do wrong?” and “Am I doing this correctly” are frequent questions from clients regarding FMLA administration. This is the 24th blog in this series, which digs into the FMLA regulations to address discrete mis-steps that can result in legal liability. Not properly understanding how holidays and holiday pay play into FMLA leave. With the … Continue Reading

Oregon Enacts Living Donor Leave Law

Earlier this month, Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed Senate Bill 796 into law—after it passed 28-1 in the state Senate, and unanimously in the House—providing protected leave under the Oregon Family Leave Act (“OFLA”) for employees who miss work in connection with donating a body part, organ, or tissue. The bill expands OFLA’s definition of … Continue Reading

Bonuses, Pay Increases and FMLA Reinstatement

An employee returning from FMLA leave is generally entitled to reinstatement to the same position they held prior to the leave or to a virtually identical position. A common area of confusion is how handle pay increases or other bonuses when an employee returns from FMLA leave. An employee returning from FMLA leave is entitled … Continue Reading

Connecticut Paid Family and Medical Leave Passes House; To Governor for Signature

Late Friday, the Connecticut House passed a paid family and medical leave bill, which Governor Ned Lamont said he will sign, to provide paid leave to eligible employees and significantly expand employee eligibility and covered reasons for leave.   The major practical effects of the bill, once signed, are: Making 12 weeks of paid leave, funded by a 0.5%  employee payroll tax (effective … Continue Reading

Connecticut Issues Guidance on Pregnancy Accommodation

On April 23, 2019, the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities (CHRO) issued a Best Practices Bluepaper as guidance for employers with three or more employees facing accommodation requests from employees for pregnancy, childbirth, or related conditions. The guidance reiterates the current obligations for employers as laid out in the 2017 amendments to the … Continue Reading

What Am I Doing Wrong?? Common FMLA Mistakes

“What did I do wrong?” and “Am I doing this correctly” are frequent questions from clients regarding FMLA administration. This is the 22nd blog in this series, which digs into the FMLA regulations to address discrete mis-steps that can result in legal liability. Not taking into account the interplay of the federal FMLA and “state … Continue Reading

The FMLA, ADA and Overseas Employees

In the global economy, it is not unusual for U.S. multinational companies to have employees working overseas.  Overseas employment arrangements require employers to navigate a variety of complex legal issues – some of them leave related. For example, what happens if an overseas employee has a medical condition that causes them to miss work? The … Continue Reading

Flesh Eating Bacteria Ate My Homework

If you’re like most folks, you’ve been wondering “when am I going to see a story mentioning both flesh eating bacteria and reasonable accommodation.” Wonder no more. Gary Brunckhorst worked for the City of Oak Park Heights Minnesota for more than fifteen years. In April 2014, he was serving as the Senior Accountant/Payroll Technician (Senior … Continue Reading

What Did She Say? Dispute Over Content of Voicemails Requires Jury Trial on FMLA Claims

An employee seeking the protection of FMLA leave must give adequate and timely notice of the need for leave.  In situations where the leave is due to a qualifying reason for which the employer previously provided the employee FMLA leave, the employee must specifically reference either the qualifying reason for leave or the need for … Continue Reading

How the Government Shutdown Impacts Employee Leave Requests

As of midnight December 21, 2018, 380,000 federal employees were placed on furlough.  An additional 420,000 are considered “excepted” and have continued working without pay.  Federal employers and employees should be aware of how the government shutdown impacts both paid time off requests as well as approved FMLA leaves. According to the Office of Personnel … Continue Reading

What Do You Mean I Can’t Require that an Employee Use PTO During FMLA Leave?

Since the FMLA came into existence, employers have been advised, where possible, to run FMLA concurrently with other leaves. Doing so prevents leave stacking. When reviewing FMLA policies, a common oversight we see is how employers handle the use of paid leave during FMLA. While the policies require employees to use earned vacation, sick or … Continue Reading

Expanded Paid Family Leave Benefits Coming to California Employees

Under the Family Medical Leave Act, eligible employees are entitled to take time off for due to a “qualifying exigency” arising from the deployment of the employee’s spouse, parent, or child for active military duty to a foreign country. Examples of “qualifying exigencies” include attendance at military events, making childcare arrangements arising from a military … Continue Reading

FMLA Leave for Chronic Health Conditions Requires Proof of Periodic Doctor’s Visits

When an employee takes medical leave, treatment by a healthcare provider is often assumed, and the frequency of doctor’s visits is rarely scrutinized.  The Pennsylvania federal court’s recent decision in Watkins v. Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh alerts us that this is not always a wise approach. In evaluating FMLA leave entitlements, verifying … Continue Reading

Another Court Decides That Extended Leave is Not a Reasonable Accommodation

As employers struggle with managing how much, if any, leave is required as an accommodation under the ADA, we are beginning to get more direction from the Courts to guide those decisions. In Easter v. Arkansas Children’s Hospital (E.D. Ark. Oct. 3, 2018) an employee was unable to work after exhausting her FMLA leave but … Continue Reading

What Am I Doing Wrong?? Common FMLA Mistakes

“What did I do wrong?” and “Am I doing this correctly?” are frequent questions from clients regarding FMLA administration. This is the seventeenth in a series highlighting some of the more common mistakes employers can inadvertently make regarding FMLA administration. Being unaware of new FMLA interpretations from the U.S. Department of Labor. While the current … Continue Reading

The Devil Is in the Detail – FMLA Eligibility and Remote Workers

With the increasing trend of telecommuting employees, it is not uncommon for a company to have small numbers of employees working from remote locations in various states. It is important that employers understand how FMLA eligibility is determined for remote workers.   Some incorrectly believe that a work-at-home employee cannot qualify for FMLA if the home … Continue Reading

What Am I Doing Wrong?? Common FMLA Mistakes

“What did I do wrong?” and “Am I doing this correctly?” are frequent questions from clients regarding FMLA administration. This is the sixteenth in a series highlighting some of the more common mistakes employers can inadvertently make regarding FMLA administration. Not requiring an employee to follow customary call-in procedures for FMLA leave. When the need … Continue Reading

What Am I Doing Wrong?? Common FMLA Mistakes.

“What did I do wrong?” and “Am I doing this correctly?” are frequent questions from clients regarding FMLA administration. This is the fifteenth in a series highlighting some of the more common mistakes employers can inadvertently make regarding FMLA administration. Not properly communicating with an employee who is about to exhaust the 12 week leave … Continue Reading
LexBlog