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Protect your rights under the Family Medical Leave Act

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was created to offer some classifications of employees 12 weeks of job-protected leave in certain circumstances. The FMLA further requires businesses to offer their employees group health benefits, which must continue during any leave period.

Perhaps your wife recently gave birth to your first child. This is a situation in which the FMLA would apply. Both you and your wife would be able to take job-protected leave from your jobs in order to take the time to care for your newly born baby.

The FMLA assists employees in balancing their family and work responsibilities. In most cases, employees can qualify for FMLA benefits if:

-- A new child is born into the family.

-- A new child is adopted into the family.

-- A child, parent, spouse or employee suffers a serious health condition.

Sometimes employees are denied their requests for unpaid leave under the FMLA, even though they should qualify. In other cases, employees are retaliated against if they request leave under the FMLA. That retaliation could take the form of a demotion, a wrongful termination, a decrease of income or loss of advancement opportunity.

It is important to keep in mind that not all employees will be able to qualify for FMLA benefits, so California workers may want to talk with an employment law attorney, such as those at the Bononi Law Group, LLP, before they make a request for leave under the FMLA. Also, employees need to follow appropriate legal procedure when requesting job-protected leave, and a lawyer will be invaluable in helping them make such an application.

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