Newark FMLA Attorney
While many employees are aware that their employers are legally required to pay them the minimum wage and to compensate them for working overtime, a surprising number of people do not know that the law also guarantees unpaid leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). This federal law entitles certain employees to up to three months of unpaid leave every year. Unfortunately, many employers fail to comply with this law, refusing to give employees time off, even when they are eligible. Employers can and should be held accountable for refusing to honor employee rights, so if you were recently denied FMLA leave, you should strongly consider contacting an experienced Newark FMLA attorney who can explain your legal options.
Who Qualifies for Leave Under the FMLA?
Although the FMLA guarantees up to 90 days of unpaid leave for employees, it only applies to those who work for a public agency, an elementary or secondary school system, or a company that employs no less than 50 employees. However, even when the FMLA covers employees, they are only guaranteed leave:
- For the birth, adoption, or care of a child;
- If they are suffering from health complications related to pregnancy;
- If they need to provide care for a child, spouse, or parent suffering from a qualifying illness; or
- If they are recovering from a serious and qualifying illness.
Employees who satisfy these requirements and who are granted FMLA leave can use it for up to three months, after which he or she must return to work or risk termination. The only exception to this rule applies when an employee must take time off from work to care for a service member relative who is recovering from an injury. In these cases, leave can be extended to up to 26 weeks.
Even when an employer’s business is covered by the FMLA and an employee has requested leave for a qualifying reason, he or she will only be granted leave if he or she:
- Has worked for the employer for at least one year;
- Has worked at least 1,250 hours for the employer in the last year; and
- Is employed by a company that has at least 50 employees working within 75 miles.
Fortunately, the 12 months of required employment does not have to be consecutive in order for an employee to qualify for leave, so any amount of time that an employee worked for a specific employer can be used to satisfy this requirement, even if the employment was only seasonal. The only time that work hours cannot be aggregated in this way is when an employee has a break in service of seven or more years.
The Legal Representation You Deserve
Covered employers who violate the FMLA can be required to reinstate wronged employees, pay lost wages, and provide coverage for medical bills that should have been covered under their insurance policy. Please call Marshall & Forman, LLC at (614) 463-9790 today to discuss your leave-related questions or concerns with our experienced Newark FMLA attorneys in your area.