When an employee becomes sick, they are often unable to work. In many cases, employees only need to take a day or two off but in others, they need much more time to recover. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows certain employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to recover from an illness or to care for a family member that is recovering from an illness. Most employers in Akron respect the law and comply with it. When they do not, however, you should speak to an Akron FMLA attorney that can help.

Provisions Under FMLA

Under the Act, eligible employees can take 12 consecutive weeks of unpaid leave, or they can take leave intermittently. In some situations, it is also possible to work on a reduced schedule. The conditions that allow an employee to take FMLA leave include:

  • Maternal or paternal leave after the birth or adoption of a child,
  • Pregnancy leave,
  • Military family member leave,
  • Medical leave to care for a serious health condition,
  • Medical leave to help treat a family member with a serious health condition
While employees can take leave to care for a family member with a health condition, only certain family members qualify. Employees can only take FMLA leave when they are caring for a spouse, child, or parent with a serious medical condition.

Qualifying for FMLA Leave

The FMLA does not cover every employee. To qualify for FMLA leave, employees must meet the following requirements:

  • The employee must have worked for the employer for a minimum of 12 months,
  • During the 12 months prior to taking qualified leave, the employee must have worked a minimum of 1,250 hours,
  • The employer must have at least 50 employees within a 75-mile radius of the worksite
Unfortunately, even when employees do qualify for leave, employers still sometimes violate the rights of workers.

FMLA Violations

There are many ways employers violate the FMLA. The three most common include:

  • Denying FMLA leave: Perhaps the most common FMLA violation occurs when employers deny eligible employees their rightful leave. Employers are not allowed to try and persuade employees to stay at work, or provide a worker with less leave than they are entitled to.
  • Violations during leave: Employers are allowed to check in with employees during their leave and ask about their recovery. However, they cannot deny an employee the benefits they enjoy while working, such as health insurance, ask them to come back to work, or assign them work during the leave.
  • Retaliation: Employers must allow employees to return to the same position they held prior to FMLA leave, or one that is similar. Employers cannot fire, demote, or otherwise retaliate against employees after they take leave.
Any time an employer commits one of these violations, or any other, employees can take action.

Our Ohio FMLA Attorneys Can Help with Your Case

If your employer has denied the rights that FMLA provides, it is important that you speak to our Akron Family and Medical Leave Act attorneys at Coffman Legal, LLC today. We will inform you of your rights and obligations under FMLA, and hold your employer accountable when they violate your rights. Call us today at (614) 949-1181 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.

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