How Long Does Family Medical Leave Last? | Mann & Elias
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How Long Does Family Medical Leave Last?


The unexpected happens all the time in life. You have the right to take care of family emergencies and other life contingencies that may pop up without losing your job. You get protected by the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), a U.S. federal law passed in 1993 that provides employees with an option to take time off work without pay for matters related to their family or their health. If your emergency falls within either of these categories, you are entitled to 12 weeks of leave. If the emergency involves a service member relative, you are allowed up to 26 weeks of leave without pay.

Are You Eligible for FMLA?

The law sets out specific eligibility requirements, including:

  • You must have worked for the company for at least 12 months and put in a minimum of 1,250 hours since starting.
  • Your employer must have a minimum of 50 employees within 75 miles.

These are the only requirements outlined in the law. If you are within them, you should be able to take leave for the prescribed time without the threat of termination.

Types of Medical Leave

The Family and Medical Leave Act breaks the type of leave you are allowed to take into two general categories: medical and personal. The breakdown is as follows:

Covered Under Medical Leave

  • Giving birth to a child
  • The need to be treated for severe health issues that require in-patient care and long-term treatment

Covered Under Personal Leave

  • Caring for a family member who is seriously ill
  • Caring for a new-born baby
  • Adopting a child
  • Taking care of a foster child
  • Other matters related to the care and placement of a child

You are allowed to take your 12 weeks within a given year. Employers who violate the Family and Medical Leave Act may have to offer restitution to employees. It can come in the form of wages, benefits, and other damages. If you have gotten fired for taking leave, our trusted employment lawyer in Los Angeles can help you establish a claim against the company. They may also be compelled to re-offer you an opportunity for promotion you may have lost because you went on leave.

When Employers Violate the FMLA

Most employers recognize that unfortunate things happen in life and that people need time to sort them out. They are willing to abide by the spirit and letter of the FMLA and give the employees who meet the criteria time off to take care of themselves or their families. Other employers are not as fair-minded. If you take leave under FMLA, they will fire you and try to get around the law if challenged.

Do not allow your rights to get trampled on. If you have been terminated or suffered any other adverse employment actions because of taking leave under FMLA, we recommend you call Mann & Elias immediately. Our dedicated job-protected sick leave lawyers in Los Angeles will be able to assist you with all aspects of your claim. Even if you are not sure whether or not you have a valid FMLA claim, give us a call, and we will figure it out with you. We are experts at this law, so give us a call. We are here to help.


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