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FMLA

First things first on FMLA: Challenge eligibility before approving leave

03/12/2013
Many employers are seeing a surge in requests for intermittent leave when an employee has a parent or child who needs help getting to medical appointments or undergoing treatments. Before you approve a request for such intermittent leave, make sure you are satisfied with the medical certification.

Ensure FMLA status won’t affect firing decision

03/07/2013
Here’s a tip that can prevent a needless lawsuit over FMLA retaliation. When a supervisor recommends firing an employee, make sure the final decision-maker doesn’t know about any recent or current FMLA leave usage.

When pregnant worker can’t perform, factor in ADA, FMLA, PDA

03/05/2013
It can be complicated to handle a pregnant employee when she can’t perform some part of her job. That’s because three federal laws—the ADA, the FMLA and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act—intersect to provide protection for some pregnant workers who have medical restrictions.

Remind bosses: No comments on FMLA use

02/07/2013

Some managers and supervisors just can’t seem to resist offering “helpful” career advice to subordinates. That’s especially true for workers they may see as less devoted to their work than old-school employees. But a remark concerning absences covered by the FMLA may well be viewed as interference with a protected right.

The FMLA at 20: Anniversary overview of the landmark law

02/05/2013

Twenty years ago today, President Bill Clinton signed the FMLA into law. Since 1993, the law has provided eligible employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for the birth, adoption or foster care of a child; caring for a child, spouse or parent with a serious health condition; or convalescence after an employee’s own serious health condition. Here’s a primer on one of the nation’s most critical employment laws

Must you offer more leave after FMLA ends?

02/04/2013

Do you have a draconian FMLA leave policy that calls for automatic termination for employees who use up their FMLA entitlement before being cleared to return to work? If so, you’re playing with fire. That’s because employees may be eligible under the ADA for additional time off.

Court: You can demand employee honesty!

02/01/2013
A federal trial court has reaffirmed that employers have the right to expect employees to be truthful. It said it’s fine to punish an employee who was reasonably suspected of dishonesty—even if it turns out the employer was wrong.

Warn managers: You can be personally liable for leave mistakes

01/26/2013

If you’re looking for incentives to get managers and supervisors to pay attention during FMLA training sessions, look no further. Simply point out that they can be held personally liable if they deny FMLA benefits to which an employee is entitled.

Note condition when employee first invokes FMLA

01/25/2013

Generally, simply calling in sick doesn’t trigger an employer’s obligations to offer FMLA leave. But what if the employee was very specific about his medical condition when he first called in and clearly was eligible for FMLA leave for that first absence? Does he have to be equally specific later?

Criticism after FMLA? Beware retaliation

01/25/2013
When a good employee with no disciplinary record suddenly turns into a bad employee following FMLA leave, watch out. You may have on your hands a bitter supervisor who wants to punish the employee for disrupting workflow, creating scheduling hassles and otherwise making life more difficult. Before approving discipline or a poor evaluation, look deeper.