Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a Federal & State law that determines the eligible employees for unpaid leaves. The Act was formulated with many protections and restrictions that are prevalent in different states. However, FMLA applies to employers having 50 or more employees. The Law helps the covered employees to avail extended leaves to handle family and medical emergency.
Who All Are Covered Under FMLA?
Not all the working employers provide the family and medical leave under the FMLA Act. The employers who are identified with state, federal, and local body are mandatorily covered under the Act. While private employers having 50 or more employees are covered under FMLA. The criteria of 50 or more employees also include part-time and work from home employees in the payroll of the employers.
The employee who is working for FMLA covered employer can avail the benefits of FMLA if he has worked for at least 12 months or at least 1250 hours of employment. The employee should be working in the US or US territory as part of the FMLA guidelines.
Is Leave Covered Under FMLA?
FMLA does not provide for every small and personal leave for employees. The employees with caregiving needs and personal small medical leave are not covered under the Act. The employees may take leave under FMLA with only the following reasons
- To help the family member with serious health conditions
- To recover from the serious health conditions
- To bond with a new child
- To help with certain military family needs
Notice for Leave Under FMLA
The notice for leave under FMLA is defined as the practice time for notice. If you need leave for foreseeable events like childbirth or planned surgery than notice for leave should be given 30 days in advance. If the event is of emergency nature or unplanned then advance notice, which is practical, should be given to employers. In case of emergency, the Act requires the employees to provide for notice as soon as they become aware of the condition. For example, if your family member has met with an accident which requires your care, the employee must give the notice under FMLA with immediate effect.
There are circumstances when an employee needs accruing paid leave along with the FMLA leave. In such a case, the employee must follow the notice period suggested by the employer’s policy.
Cooperation with Employees for Smooth Working Conditions
When an employee avails the leave under FMLA, it is obvious that he will be on leave for a longer period of time. In such cases, it is legitimate to ask for a rescheduling of duties and work responsibilities. The longer leave period can disrupt workflow. The employees can reschedule the surgeries or treatment if possible and completes the work in hand assigned to the employee. However, if the condition is serious and rescheduling is out of the question, the company should not ask for changes and must offer the leave required to the employees. The doctors and health care provider must approve the rescheduling, the condition must persist with the employees who are seeking leave.