Family Leave Medical Act
The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) establishes minimum federal standards and rights to unpaid leave for employees with health problems, sick family members, or for employees who are giving birth to or adopting children. Since this law is relatively new, attorney Stephen T. Fieweger understands it can be tricky to negotiate in the workplace since case law is continually evolving and states continue to pass their own laws that address many of the same issues. You will want competent and experienced legal counsel.
In broad terms, FMLA requires qualifying employers to grant covered employees up to 12 weeks off every 12 months to address personal family issues involving medical issues, pregnancy or adoption. The law applies to employers with at least 50 employees who have been employed for the past 20 consecutive weeks, public agencies (regardless of size), and the employees of both public and private elementary and secondary schools. To be covered, employees must have worked at least 1,250 hours for a qualifying employer at a qualifying location in the past 12 months.
Benefits are protected during your FMLA leave; your employer must continue to pay for your health insurance coverage in your absence. The employer cannot harass you or discriminate against you for taking leave.
Military Family Members Have Expanded FMLA Rights
A 2009 amendment to the FMLA allows the child, spouse, parent, or next-of-kin of an armed forces service member with a serious injury or illness to take up to 26 weeks of unpaid caregiver leave. The amendment also allows families of Reserve or National Guard members to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to deal with issues related to the service member’s call to active duty.
As you can see, it quickly gets complicated. Get in touch with Stephen T. Fieweger if you believe you have been unjustly denied FMLA rights.