The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that permits qualifying employees to take lengthy periods of time off to tend to their own or a family member's medical needs. Typically, you can take your leave all at once or in chunks so that the leave satisfies your needs.
In some cases, an employer may deny your rightful leave, either due to ignorance or willful violation of the law. Or, your employer may grant your leave but retaliate afterwards. Here are a few signs that you should contact a medical leave attorney.
1. Your Employer Tries to Get You to Postpone Your Leave
In some cases, you might be able to plan your leave ahead of time. For example, if you need to have surgery for a chronic knee issue, you'll likely have a little leeway scheduling the procedure.
If your employer tries to guilt you into postponing your leave, even after you've given your advance notice, this is cause to contact a lawyer with medical leave expertise. Your employer can't ask you to not use your FMLA leave or dictate how you use your benefits. Should you need to take FMLA unexpectedly, your employer can't try to get you to come in to tie up any unfinished work projects.
2. There Are Inappropriate Changes to Your Health Insurance
One of the stipulations of FMLA is that you're permitted to keep your health insurance while you are out on leave. You still have to make your premium payments, but your employer can't cancel your insurance because you opted to use medical leave.
This doesn't mean that your employer is unable to make changes to your company's medical plan while you're on leave. For example, your employer can decide to offer a new health insurance plan with different coverage levels.
3. Your Employer Encourages You to Work While You're on Leave
While you're on your leave, you cannot complete work-related tasks. It is acceptable for your employer to occasionally check in with you to determine when you're planning to return to work, but they shouldn't harass you when you're out on leave.
4. You Don't Have a Job When Your Leave Is Over
If you comply with the requirements of FMLA, such as having your doctor fill out the required paperwork, this guarantees that you'll have a job to return to when your leave is over. Should your employer refuse to provide you with a job or try to get you to return at a time more convenient for the company, this is an FMLA violation.Share