Leaves of Absence LawFMLA Attorneys
Leaves of Absence
Certain employees in California have rights concerning leaves of absence from their jobs under both federal law and state law. The two primary laws are the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the California Family Rights Act (CFRA.)
Under both FMLA and CFRA an employee is entitled to take a leave of absence of up to 12 weeks for:
- The employee’s own serious health condition
- The serious health condition of a spouse, parent or child of the employee
- The employee to bond with a new child
The requirements of FMLA and CFRS apply only to employers with 50 or more employees. An employee must have been employed by that employer for at least 12 months and worked a total of at least 1250 hours in the preceding 12 month period. Although the leave of absence is a right, an employment attorney in Irvine will emphasize that proper procedure must be followed by the employee and the employer may request documentation of the necessity for the leave.
The general rule is that when the time comes to return to work, the employee must be allowed to resume the same job as before the leave of absence. In some instances, however, that job may have been eliminated by the employer. If so, an employment lawyer in Irvine will explain that the employer must offer a similar job at a comparable pay scale. An exception to this right to return to work occurs if:
- The employer can prove the employee would have been laid off during the leave of absence
- No comparable job is in fact available
Penalties for Failure to Comply
If an employer denies an employee a leave of absence or fails to allow the employee to return to work without cause, the employer may be liable for back pay, attorney’s fees and damages for pain and suffering. In some circumstances, the employee may also be permitted to return to work.
Seek the Legal Counsel of an Employment Attorney in Irvine
Coverage under FMLA and CFRA may be consecutive or concurrent and can be confusing. To fully understand your rights, contact Altus Law Firm at 949-346-3391.