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FMLA

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Reassignment can be post-FMLA accommodation

11/21/2017

When a disabled employee wants to return to work, limitations may make it impossible for him to do his old job. If so, it may be reasonable to either grant more leave or reassign the employee—or both.

FMLA mistakes aren’t necessarily ‘willful’

11/15/2017

Under the FMLA, employees have two years to sue for alleged violations—extended to three years if the violation is “willful.” But not every FMLA mistake is a willful violation.

Document business reasons for staffing moves

11/15/2017

Document the timing and explanation for all employment actions. It’s hard for employees to win lawsuits over transfers, demotions or discharges when the employer has records showing objective business reasons for the move.

OK to fire if you discover mistakes while employee is out on FMLA leave

11/15/2017

Sometimes, an employee with a blemished disciplinary history may think he will be protected from termination if he takes FMLA leave. But the FMLA right to return isn’t absolute.

Supreme Court passes on FMLA retaliation

11/09/2017

Where an employer is located makes a difference when it comes to defeating an employee’s FMLA retaliation lawsuit. That’s because different federal courts use different standards for what an employee needs to prove to win a retaliation case under the FMLA.

Track all leave taken, even after FMLA ends

11/08/2017

If you generously provide extra leave for employees who run out of FMLA leave, be sure to document it. Should the employee later accuse your organization of FMLA retaliation, the fact that you approved subsequent leave can demonstrate your good faith.

Remind bosses they must never criticize employees for taking FMLA-covered leave

11/08/2017

Employees who find themselves criticized for lower productivity or missed deadlines because they were out may have a legitimate FMLA interference or retaliation claim.

Wrong about FMLA abuse? Your honest belief counts

11/02/2017
The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals recently handed a victory to employers that struggle with employees who misuse FMLA leave—particularly intermittent FMLA leave. The court held that an employer’s honest belief that its employee misused FMLA leave was sufficient to defeat an FMLA retaliation claim, even if the employer was mistaken.

Never tie FMLA leave to employee’s performance

10/27/2017
When preparing a performance review, remind supervisors that they should never mention FMLA leave or appear to use it as a factor in the evaluation. That can lead to a big jury award later if the review is used to justify termination—even during a reduction in force.

100% healed back-to-work rule could backfire

10/26/2017
Do you have a companywide policy that requires all workers who are out on leave to get a doctor’s certification that they are completely healed before they can return to work? Such a rule may run afoul of the ADA.
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