Occasionally employees may face medical or health problems that require prolonged attention. They might need some time away from work to deal with these personal issues. In these cases it is possible for employees to get unpaid leave of up to 12 months, depending on the seriousness of their situation. The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 is a Federal law which lays the guidelines for employers when providing unpaid leaves to employees in these situations. Complete job security must be guaranteed by the employer. On returning to work, these employees ought to be reinstated to their original positions.
The employee must meet the eligibility criteria under FMLA law to apply for family and medical leave. It is compulsory that the employee has worked for 12 months prior to applying for family and medical leave. A total of 1250 working hours within those 12 months are also essential to be eligible for leave. The company must have employed 50 or more people for the FMLA law to be applicable. The law applies to both the private and public sector. But in some cases, elected officials and public office holders might not be able to get family and medical leave.
There are several situations in which employees can put in a request for family and medical leave. Employees that suffer from an illness and require time to recuperate are often eligible for medical leave. If a family member of an employee is severely injured and requires nursing, they may apply for family leave. Pregnant employees and those who have recently adopted a baby can also get prolonged leave to take care of their child. In addition, employees may also take up to 6 months leave to take care of a family member who was injured while serving in the military.
You could face several problems when applying for family and medical leave. Your employer might not recognize the extent of your problem or you may not be eligible to apply for prolonged leave. In these situations it is often helpful to contact an experienced attorney to review your situation. The attorney might be able to get you the leave you deserve.