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FMLA

FMLA isn’t carte blanche for all sick leave

03/23/2011

Some employees with chronic health conditions believe that getting approved for intermittent FMLA leave means they can take protected time off anytime they feel sick. That’s simply not true. Intermittent leave can only be taken for illness, treatment or flare-ups directly related to a condition for which a health care provider has certified intermittent leave.

How to avoid the FMLA ‘no-fire’ zone: Prorate performance goals to account for FMLA leave

03/18/2011

Sometimes employees will suddenly request FMLA leave when they know they face termination because they’re not meeting their performance goals. They think no one can be fired while on FMLA leave. Wrong! You can fire such a worker—as long as you first make performance goal adjustments that take their FMLA leave into account.

Summer FMLA leave to care for child: Permissible?

03/18/2011
Q. An employee asked to take 12 weeks of FMLA leave this summer because her kindergarten-age child will be out of school. She says her child is special-needs and can’t go to summer camp. Do we have to allow her to take what amounts to an unpaid summer vacation?

Extra leave under MPLA subject to employer approval

03/14/2011
Although they’re welcome to be more generous, employers are only obligated to provide six weeks of leave under the Minnesota Parental Leave Act

Your best defense against failure-to-hire suits: Sound hiring process, complete documentation

03/14/2011

It’s one of the HR profession’s hard truths: You never know which applicant may sue you if he or she isn’t hired. That means you must be ready to defend every hiring decision. The best way is to have a clear routine that everyone involved in the hiring process must use.

How to work with GINA–the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act

03/14/2011
In late 2010, the EEOC published GINA regulations that provide employers with specific guidance concerning what information they may gather about their employees, how GINA interacts with the FMLA medical certification process and how any genetic information the employer obtains is to be treated.

FMLA isn’t carte blanche for all sick leave

03/04/2011

Some employees with chronic health conditions mistakenly believe that getting approved for intermittent FMLA leave means they can take protected time off anytime they feel ill. That’s simply not true. Intermittent leave can only be taken for illness, treatment or flare-ups directly related to a condition for which a health care provider has certified intermittent leave.

Make sure employee handbook supports compliance with leave laws

03/04/2011
Employers are generally free to develop their own internal policies, but many laws require employers to notify employees of those policies. Consider the case of Jones v. City of Atlantic City in which an FMLA dispute revealed that Atlantic City hadn’t updated its handbook in 13 years. In fact, the last update happened two months before the FMLA was signed into law.

Don’t grant unlimited leave as ADA accommodation

03/04/2011

Employees who use up their FMLA leave may still be entitled to more time off when that leave expires. Some additional time off can be a legitimate reasonable accommodation under the ADA. But if the employee still can’t return after additional leave, it may be time to discuss termination.

Good record-keeping, constant contact are key to successful FMLA administration

03/04/2011

Smart employers carefully track FMLA leave and make sure employees know their rights. That includes warning employees when their leave is about to expire and explaining their options for returning or requesting additional time off. By keeping employees informed and meticulously tracking all conversations, you make it harder for someone to successfully sue you.