Your Guide to Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) of 1993
First and foremost, you are probably landed here because you want to know what exactly the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 is or FMLA for short.
Well, for short, the FMLA is a labor law in the United States that require ALL covered employers to provide their employees with some sort of job-protected along with unpaid leave for qualifying family reasons and medical reasons.
The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 was a BIG part of President Bill Clinton’s domestic agenda in his first term. He officially signed this into law back in February of 1993.
The Wage and Hour Division that is under the United States Department of Labor is what administers the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993.
What Exactly is the Family and Medical Leave Act?
The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, is where employees will have the chance to have up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a year period in which they can handle these following medical or family reasons:
- Care for a new child
- Recovering from a serious illness
- Be the caregiver of an ill family member
The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 will cover private and public sector employees. However, there are a few different categories of employers that the Family and Medical leave Act of 1993 will not cover including highly compensated employees and elected officials.
For you to be eligible for the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, you must have worked for your current employer for at least a year. You must have also worked a minimum of 1,250 hours in the past years, and your employer must have a minimum of 50 employees. However, there are a few states that have passed additional laws that will provide more protection when it comes to medical and family leave for their employees.
Scope of Rights in Nevada
As we have previously mentioned above the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 will typically only apply to employers who have a minimum of 50 employees in the past 20 weeks out of the last year.
Employees will have to have worked for the employer for at least a year and worked a minimum of 1,250 hours in that last year as well.
You as an employee will be required to give your employer at least a 30-day notice prior to you adopting or giving birth. You as an employee will also be required to give a least 30 days’ notice prior to any serious health conditions, if applicable. All treatments should be scheduled, to not interrupt the employer’s operations.
Along with your 30-day notice, there are a few other requirements that will need to be done when you are seeking the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. For instance, if you are first using the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, you will need to claim that. Same thing will go for the next time you want to use the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993.
Your Rights During Your Leave
As we have previously mentioned you as the employee will have up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for your adoption, the birth of your child, to care for your poor health relative, or to recover from your own poor health.
However, this can leave some gray area, so the purposes for your leave should be one of the following:
- For the care of a child (birth of the child, adoption of the child, or foster a child)
- For the care of an ill member of the family
- For recovering from your own illness
- For care for an injured service member that is in your family
- For the care of family when a member is being deployed
When you are taking leave for a child, you should take your leave all together. However, you can work with your employer to take your leave off in different chunks, but that is going to be up to what the employer wants.
However, even though this will be completely unpaid leave, your employer is still required to provide you your benefits during this time as well.
Your employer will have the right to substitute your 12 unpaid weeks in exchange for your vacation time, personal time, and even family time. You will need to talk to your employer beforehand on how they will handle this, so you are not blindsided.
Your Right to Return to Your Job
After your unpaid leave is up, you as an employee will have the chance to return to your job, unless you are in the top 10% of the highest earning employee.
However, you are in legal rights to return to job. You will still have your rights before, during and after your unpaid leave will be:
- Keep the same health insurance benefits
- Gain the same position upon returning to work
- Keep your benefits while on your leave
What Family and Medical Leave Act NOT Cover?
Now, that we have talked about what the Family and Medical Leave Act will cover, let’s go into detail of what the Family and Medical Leave Act will NOT cover.
The FMLA does not cover the following:
- Employees working for an employer who does not have 50 employees
- Employees who have not worked for their company for a year or worked less than 1,250 hours
- Employees who need to care for their pets
- Employees who need time off for acute illnesses