We understand that the law can be complicated when it comes to managing leaves.  Here are some quick facts to help you get started.

 

 

FMLA Quick Facts

  • A "serious health condition" has a specific meaning under the the Family and Medical Leave Act ("FMLA") and an individual must be experiencing a serious health condition as that term is defined under the law in order to be covered by the FMLA.
  • Both employees and employers are required to follow notice requirements under the FMLA
    • Employers must:
      • Notify employees of their rights and responsibilities under the FMLA
      • Notify an employee of FMLA eligibility in a limited period of time
      • Upon receipt of all necessary information to make a decision regarding whether an employee’s request for FMLA leave shall be granted, employers must advise the employee within a specified number of days whether the leave has been granted or denied
    • Employers that fail to comply with the notice and other requirements of this the FMLA are exposed to a variety of penalties
    • Employees must:
      • Notify their employer at least 10 calendar days (or if not possible, as soon as practicable) before any proposed period of leave
      • In the event of an emergency, notice must be provided no later than 2 business days after the leave begins
  • Under Federal Law:
    • Employers must provide eligible employees with 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a 12-month period under certain defined circumstances.
    • Employee eligibility requirements:
      1. Must have worked for a covered employer for at least 12 months
      2. Must have worked 1,250 hours in previous 12 months
      3. Must be employed at a worksite where the employer employs at least 50 employees within 75 miles
    • Eligible employees may be entitled to take leave for: 
      • The birth or placement of a child for adoption and foster care; 
      • To care for a parent, child, or spouse with a serious health condition;
      • To care for the employee's own serious health condition;
      • To address certain circumstances relating to short-notice military deployment; and
      • To care for covered ill and injured service members.
  • *Various states also have their own unique family and medical leave laws with entitlements or compliance requirements different from, or in addition to, those provided under the federal FMLA.  These states include:
    • California
    • Connecticut
    • the District of Columbia
    • Hawaii
    • Illinois
    • Kentucky
    • Louisiana
    • Maine
    • Massachusetts
    • Minnesota
    • Nevada
    • New Jersey
    • North Carolina
    • Oregon
    • Rhode Island
    • Vermont
    • Washington
    • Wisconsin
      • For example, under the Wisconsin Family and Medical Leave Act ("WFMLA"):
        • Employers must provide eligible employees with 6 weeks of leave for the birth or adoption of a child; 2 weeks for the employee's own serious health condition; and 2 weeks for the serious health condition of a parent, child, spouse or domestic partner
        • Employee eligibility requirements under WFMLA:
          1. Must have worked for a covered employer for 52 consecutive weeks
          2. Must have been paid by the employer for at least 1,000 hours during the preceding 52-week period
          3. Must incorporate these state law requirements into the overall compliance process and determine which law provides the greater benefit to the employee

*Employers must be cognizant of state law requirements because, when both state and federal law apply, employers are responsible for determining which law provides the greater benefit to the employee.  Thus, employers also have the additional burden of incorporating these state law requirements into the overall compliance process.

 

Still Have Questions?

Contact us and we can help to clarify.

 

We recommend that you contact your legal counsel to review the implementing documents to ensure any local compliance obligations are met.