Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Accommodation

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law enacted in 1993 that provides qualifying employees with the ability to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in certain circumstances, such as:

  • If the worker has sustained a serious health condition
  • If the worker will be caring for a family member who has sustained a serious health condition
  • To adjust to the birth or adoption of a child of the worker
  • To take certain military entitlements in connection with military deployments.

FMLA Requirements

In order to seek leave under the FMLA, the employer must be a “covered employer” and a person seeking leave benefits must fulfill the work requirements of the position.

Employer Requirements

All governmental employers are considered “covered employers” under the FMLA, regardless of the number of employees working for the employer.  Governmental employers included federal, state, and local governmental entities, as well as elementary and secondary schools.

Private employers will be “covered employers” subject to the FMLA if they employ more than 50 workers.

Employee Requirements

In order to qualify for FMLA benefits, an employee must:

  • Have worked for the employer for at least 12 months (the 12 month requirement applies to a total of 12 months, they need not be consecutive months), and
  • Have worked for the employer for at least 1250 hours in the 12 month period before leave is to be taken, and
  • Work at a location where the employer has at least 50 employees within 75 miles of your worksite. So, if there are not at least 50 workers within 75 miles of your worksite, you would not qualify for FMLA leave.

Retaliation for Taking FMLA Leave

It is strictly unlawful to terminate or otherwise discriminate against an employee because that employee took or requested FMLA leave. An employee who is terminated for taking or requesting FMLA leave has a claim of unlawful termination.

Helping Clients Take FMLA Leave

If you are being denied leave under the FMLA and you and the employer both qualify as being covered under the Act, or if you believe that you have been terminated or discriminated against because you took or requested FMLA leave, we can help.  Please call our office at (617) 521-8600 for a free consultation to learn more about our services.

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