What notice am I required to give an employer when using FMLA?

When New York employees seek to exercise their rights to time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), there are certain factors their union leadership and they must be aware of to comply with the law. For example, when an employee is eligible for FMLA and is set to use it, there are certain requirements that must be adhered to when informing the employer. If there is an issue with the employee taking leave or there are allegations as to a failure to adhere to protocol, legal help might be necessary.

Employees who are going to use FMLA must give a notice of 30 days to the employer if it is possible. When it is not possible to give that notice within 30 days, the employee must provide it as soon as it is practicable. This is the same or the next business day. If it is not foreseeable that the FMLA will be used, the employee must tell the employer based on the situation. If there are no unusual circumstances, the employee is required to follow the basic agreement with the employer when asking for leave.

The employer must be given the necessary information to decide if FMLA is applicable. That can include hospitalization, an inability to do the job due to the issue, if a family member is receiving care from a health care provider, and for other reasons. The first time the employee asks for leave under FMLA, he or she does not have to specifically mention FMLA. If there is a need to use FMLA for the same reason another time, the employee must inform the employer of this.

FMLA is a right that is granted to certain employees who qualify. If there is an issue with FMLA and the notice provided to the employer is not deemed sufficient or something else has arisen, it is imperative that the union have legal protection from an attorney who is experienced with labor law and in helping clients with FMLA.

Source: dol.gov, "Employee notice -- What and when do I need to tell my employer if I plan to take FMLA leave?," accessed on Oct. 3, 2017

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