JOB PROTECTION AND BENEFITS
- Upon return from FMLA leave, an employee must be returned to the same position or to an "equivalent position with equivalent benefits, pay, status, and other terms and conditions of employment."
- An employee who takes FMLA leave is entitled to maintain health benefits coverage. An employee on unpaid FMLA leave may pay the employee share of the premiums on a current basis or pay upon return to work.
ADVANCE NOTICE AND MEDICAL CERTIFICATION
- An employee must provide notice of his or her intent to take family and medical leave not less than 30 days before leave is to begin or, in emergencies, as soon as is practicable.
- Medical certification is required to support a request for FMLA leave to care for an employee's spouse, son, daughter, or parent who has a serious health condition or for the serious health condition of the employee.
- If the FMLA request is based on the birth and care of a son or daughter or the placement of a child for adoption or foster care, the employee may be required to provide administratively acceptable evidence to support the request.
WHEN THE 12 MONTH PERIOD BEGINS FOR FMLA
The 12-month period begins on the date an employee first takes FMLA leave and continues for 12 months. An employee is not entitled to 12 additional workweeks of unpaid leave until the previous 12-month period ends and an event or situation occurs that entitles the employee to another period of FMLA leave. This may include a continuation of a previous event or situation.
SUBSTITUTION OF PAID LEAVE FOR UNPAID LEAVE
An employee may substitute accrued or advanced annual or sick leave and donated annual leave for unpaid FMLA leave, consistent the rules governing use of leave. For example, if FMLA is invoked to care for a healthy newborn, only annual leave may be substituted as there is no authorization to use sick leave for a healthy child.
EXPANDED FMLA ENTITLEMENTS FOR FAMILY MEMBERS OF ACTIVE DUTY SERVICE MEMBERS
The FMLA was amended in 2008 to allow employees to take up to 12 weeks of leave each year for each 12 month period for any qualifying exigency arising out of the fact the service member is on active duty or has been notified of a call to active duty in support of a contingency operation. Additionally, the FMLA was amended to allow eligible employees to take up to 26 weeks of leave to care for a covered service member with a serious illness or injury.