WERE YOU DENIED FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE? A FMLA ATTORNEY IN LOS ANGELES CAN HELP YOU
As is the case in any state, California employers must comply with the federal and state laws that allow eligible employees to take unpaid leave in certain situations.
State and federal laws mandate fairness concerning medical leave; many employers mistreat and withhold benefits from employees across the U.S.
If you believe you have been denied your rights as an employee, contact a family medical leave attorney in Los Angeles to begin the legal process.
WHAT IS FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE?
Under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and California Family Rights Act (CFRA), employees can take unpaid job-protected leave. It is crucial to understand if you are covered under both laws.
Family-based medical leave is a federal law that the government passed in 1993. It entitles employees of covered employers 12 weeks off to tend to family members with the following conditions or personally recover from:
- Chronic serious health conditions
- Incapacity for more than three days with continuing treatment
- Care of family members with a serious health condition
- Inpatient care
- Transitions in and out of duty for those serving or with spouses serving in the military
The cold or flu are not considered chronic health conditions like asthma or diabetes. FMLA only covers conditions that require periodic doctor visits for treatment. It must be at least two visits per year with your healthcare provider. Read on for more information regarding medical leave, including protected COVID-19 leave.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE?
In California, employers with at least 50 employees must comply with the FMLA. Employees are eligible for protected leave if:
- They have worked for the company for one year or more
- They worked 1,250 hours or more in the previous year, and
- They work at a location with a minimum of 50 employees within a 75-mile radius
CALIFORNIA STATE LAWS
California has a handful of medical leave laws of its own. CFRA enhances FMLA policies regarding military family leave, pregnancy disability leave, domestic violence leave, and small necessities.
Unlike federal laws, CFRA does not allow employers to ask you about your treatment, diagnosis, or other medical data to verify your need for leave. If your healthcare provider can confirm that you have a severe health condition that adheres to CFRA standards, the company cannot request additional information per FMLA.
There are two alternatives an employer could present you with, should your health be an issue:
- They can approve your medical leave
- Pay for you to get examined by another healthcare provider
Additionally, like FMLA, new parents can take time off to bond with their newborn within 12 weeks of their birth. Those with complicated pregnancies can request four months off through Pregnancy Disability Leave (PDL) to recover from birth-related disabilities.
HIRE THE TRIAL LAWYERS OTHER ATTORNEYS CONSULT
If you are an employee in California, it is vital to understand your rights as an individual. If you believe you have been mistreated, we can help you hold your employer accountable! Reach out to our employment attorney in Los Angeles to learn more.
Since 1998, The Law Offices of Mann & Elias have helped individuals just like you receive the benefits they deserve. We represent clients at every state and federal court system level in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, Orange, San Diego, and Ventura counties.
We know how to handle these cases best and get you the compensation you deserve. Call 323-866-9564 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your first consultation.
WHY CHOOSE MANN & ELIAS?
Since Scott Mann and Imad Elias have founded the employment law firm, they have successfully recovered hundreds of claims resulting in over $18 million in settlements and verdicts. While there are thousands of lawyers to choose from, our success is rooted in:
- 50+ years of trial experience
- Excellent advocacy skills
- Intense preparation and research
- Quality care
If you believe an employer is preventing you from taking family leave, contact us today to learn about your legal rights. We charge no fee for the initial consultation, and all cases get handled on a contingency basis.
RELATED ARTICLES ABOUT FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE
You have questions – we’ve got answers! Need more legal help? Check out a few of our legal articles below.
Suing Your Employer for Denying Medical Leave
Your employer can deny FMLA if the company has less than 50 employees if you have been employed for less than a year or have worked less than the required hours in prior months. For companies that qualify, you are entitled to 12 weeks of job-protected leave. If your employer denies giving you time off, it is an FMLA violation. The most frequent issues clients face are:
- The employer refused to let their employee take time off to help a sick family member or to deal with their chronic severe illness themselves.
- The employer fired or disciplined the employee for requesting medical leave.
- The employer forced an employee to come back to work before their requested leave was through.
- The employee returned from their time off to find an employer had removed them from their former position.
You can find more information regarding how to sue your employer for denying leave here.
How Long Does Family Medical Leave Last?
Unfortunately, the unexpected happens to thousands of families every day. You have the right to take care of family emergencies and other life contingencies that may arise without worrying about losing your job.
Keep in mind that there are certain eligibility requirements. Typically, you have 12 weeks. If the emergency involves a service member relative, you are allowed up to 26 weeks of leave without pay. Learn more in-depth information about how long family medical leave lasts and eligibility.
The FMLA’s Military Provisions for Employees
Military provisions were created to expand on previous FMLA coverage. There are two newer types of coverage designed to support military families. The first allows eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of job-protected time off when a family member is deployed.
The second is specifically for military caregivers; they can take up to 26 weeks off to care for a sick or injured service member. However, employees cannot take more time off. Time off is allotted regarding the event that has affected the servicemember.
In 12 months, employees can take off 26 weeks to deal with whatever injury or illness is at hand. If they are an active service member, an employee can take another 26 weeks off in a different 12-month period to deal with those same ailments. Read on for more information about FMLA’s military provisions.
FAQs ABOUT FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE
What situations are eligible for FMLA?
If you or a family member are involved in a health crisis, several situations may qualify for FMLA coverage.
- If you cannot work due to a medical issue
- An immediate family member is ill and needs you to care for them
- You are an employee who is preparing to give birth to a child
- New parents who need to care for a newborn, adopted a child, or have a child placed with you under foster care
- If your spouse, parent, or child is called to active military duty
Should your employer be disputing your ability to qualify under any of these conditions, consult with a lawyer.
Will I be paid while on FMLA leave?
Unfortunately, FMLA does not require employers to pay employees. However, you can request any paid leave time you have accrued before taking the job-protected leave. In some situations, employers may require their employees to use paid leave time during their FMLA leave, so long as the employee is given proper notification.
If I complain about an FMLA violation, can I be fired?
Absolutely not. Whenever there is an allegation of an FMLA violation, employers are in no way allowed to retaliate against employees making the allegations. If you have filed a complaint and believe your employer is retaliating against you, hire the services of a lawyer to ensure that your legal rights are protected.
Will I lose my job if I take FMLA?
Probably not, though there are exceptions. While employers cannot violate any rights granted under the act, they cannot use an employee out on FMLA leave as a negative factor when doing performance reviews or making hiring or firing decisions. They may be allowed to deny reinstatement to highly paid salaried workers who are considered to work in “key” positions.
Can an Employer Refuse to Grant My FMLA Leave Request?
So long as you are an eligible employee and your employer is covered by FMLA, the company cannot deny your leave request. Should you face such a situation, do not accept this. Instead, turn to an attorney that is well-versed in family medical leave cases.