Total Articles: 15
Ogletree Deakins • January 09, 2017
According to a federal judge in Pennsylvania, employees are not entitled to the job restoration protections of the FMLA after the statutory leave has expired, even where the employee has received permission from the employer to extend that leave. Wevodau v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, et al, 2017 BL 1246 (MDPA, January 4, 2017).
Franczek Radelet P.C • August 26, 2015
Do you know what happens when you maintain a policy or practice that requires an employee to return to work without restrictions or “100% healed”? You pay. A lot.
Ogletree Deakins • September 29, 2014
One of the questions most frequently asked by employers is whether an employee’s failure to comply with company policies regarding a return-to-work release can support termination of the individual’s employment. While courts differ on that issue depending upon judicial circuit and the specific facts of the case, the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently answered that question with a definitive “Yes.” Withers v. Johnson, 8th Cir., No. 13-2646, August 15, 2014.
Franczek Radelet P.C • April 08, 2014
Last week, I had the pleasure of co-presenting with EEOC Commissioner Chai Feldblum on the topic of “leave” as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA. Our presentation was part of an FMLA/ADA compliance conference hosted by the Disability Management Employer Coalition. You can access BNA’s coverage of our presentation here. Naturally, Cmmr. Feldblum and I aren’t going to agree on everything when it comes to the ADA, since I represent employers and Cmmr. Feldblum is a sitting EEOC Commissioner. But when it comes to employer compliance with the ADA, we found much to agree on during this session.
Ogletree Deakins • October 21, 2013
In an unpublished opinion issued on October 8, 2013, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld summary judgment in favor of an employer on a claim under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The interesting – and somewhat unexpected – basis of the decision was the fact that the plaintiff/employee’s termination was based upon her failure to return from a medical leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) in a timely manner. Owens v. Calhoun County School District, 5th Cir., No. 12-60897, October 8, 2013.
Franczek Radelet P.C • August 29, 2013
Do you know what's particularly oppressive about the FMLA? [You: Jeff, everything about the FMLA is oppressive!]
Franczek Radelet P.C • October 03, 2012
The Family and Medical Leave Act and its regulations tell us that an employer must return an employee to the same or an equivalent position upon return from FMLA leave. Not surprisingly, I often am asked by clients, "What is an 'equivalent' position?"
Ogletree Deakins • August 13, 2012
The FMLA permits eligible employees to take up to 12 workweeks of leave during a 12-month period if a “serious health condition . . . makes the employee unable to perform the functions of [his or her] position.” Employers are prohibited from interfering with qualified employees’ benefits or leave under the FMLA. However, the 3d U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that the FMLA does not shield an employee from discharge merely because an alleged misconduct occurred during an FMLA leave, nor does it prohibit termination of an employee who abuses the terms of an FMLA leave. Warwas v. City of Plainfield, 3d Circuit, No. 11-1736, July 25, 2012.
Franczek Radelet P.C • June 22, 2012
Here's a question from the client inquiry line this past week, and it pops up often enough that I figured I would share:
Franczek Radelet P.C • May 10, 2012
There must be something in the water. Over the past few months alone, I have reviewed a number of employers' policies and correspondence regarding an employee's return to work from a leave of absence. What has been surprising to me is the number of employer policies that require an employee to return from leave with "no restrictions" or "100% healed." Consider the following requirement, which was embedded in an employer's return to work notice at the conclusion of FMLA leave:
Franczek Radelet P.C • August 26, 2011
Employers often complain that they see an uptick in the use of sick leave and FMLA leave around the holidays. In the case of Southwest Airlines, however, one employee clearly took FMLA misuse a bit too far.
Ogletree Deakins • July 05, 2011
The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld an employeeâ€™s termination for job abandonment, in spite of the fact that the employee argued that he was on FMLA leave at the time of his termination. The court based that holding on the fact that the employee was unable to return to work at the conclusion of his medical leave, and that he therefore was unable to show that his termination prejudiced his rights under the FMLA.
Franczek Radelet P.C • September 10, 2010
We have an employee returning from FMLA leave due to his own serious health condition. Although the employee has provided a doctor's note stating that he is released to work "full duty," we have serious concerns about his ability to do his job without risk of injury to himself or others. Can we require him to see a doctor selected by the company?
Ogletree Deakins • September 01, 2009
An employee who takes leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is entitled - in most instances - to be reinstated to his or her former position, with equivalent pay and benefits, upon expiration of that leave. However, an employee is not entitled to a position or other benefit of employment to which he would not otherwise be entitled simply because he is on FMLA leave. It is on that basis that the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the termination of a company’s Vice President of Information Technology, even though the termination occurred while that individual was on an FMLA leave.
Ogletree Deakins • February 18, 2009
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) generally provides 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a 12-month period to an eligible employee suffering from a serious health condition. An employee who takes FMLA leave is entitled to be restored to the job he or she held at the time the leave commenced, or to an equivalent position. If, however, the employee is unable to return to work at the end of that 12-week period, he or she is no longer protected by the FMLA.