Intermittent FMLA Leave
Employees are entitled to intermittent unpaid leave through the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), yet disputes may arise over these rights.
An FMLA leave attorney can help you assert your rights to a reduced work schedule if they have been violated.
The Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson can help workers in the Allen, Plano, and Frisco, TX, areas with their FMLA leave disputes.
What Is the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)?
What Is Intermittent FMLA Leave?
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that allows employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid medical leave a year, depending on the circumstances. However, the law also allows employees to use their 12 weeks of unpaid absence intermittently. This is sometimes referred to as reduced schedule leave.
By taking intermittent leave, eligible employees can use up their 12 weeks of leave in separate blocks of time instead of taking all 12 weeks of leave consecutively. These blocks of time may be as short as a few hours during a work day in order to attend medical appointments or meet other obligations. In other words, the law will allow for your absence in order to tend to protected needs, whether that absence occurs in one uninterrupted block of time or smaller increments.
AM I ELIGIBLE FOR
To qualify for intermittent leave, you must meet the following FMLA guidelines for employee eligibility:
- You work at a company with at least 50 employees within a 75-mile radius
- You have been an employee at the company for at least 12 months (the 12 months do not have to be consecutive)
- You have logged at least 1,250 hours of work during those 12 months prior to taking leave
Reasons for Taking Leave
If you meet the above requirements, you are entitled to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a year-long period. However, you must have a qualifying reason for taking this leave, such as:
- A serious health condition
- Caring for an immediate relative with a serious health condition
- The birth of a child
- Caring for a newborn or newly placed foster or adoptive child
What Counts As a Serious Health Condition?
According to FMLA guidelines, a serious health condition is any physical or mental illness, injury, or impairment that:
- Requires inpatient hospital care
- Is considered a chronic serious health condition
- Causes incapacity that is permanent or long-term
- Results in incapacity for more than three days with continuing medical care
- Requires multiple treatments
You can also claim FMLA leave if you are incapacitated due to pregnancy or prenatal care.
Have Your FMLA Rights Been Violated? Request a Free Consultation with an Employment Attorney
The FMLA guarantees eligible employees up to 12 weeks of leave to bond with a child, undergo medical treatment, or care for a sick family member. If you believe that your employer has unjustly denied your FMLA leave or has made unreasonable requests of you while addressing a medical condition or child care needs, the Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson can help.
Serving clients in the greater Allen, Plano, and Frisco, TX, areas, our team will take time to listen to you and your needs. We offer free consultations and work on a contingency fee basis. That means you do not have to pay any legal fees unless we successfully resolve your case.
If you would like more information about FMLA leave disputes, contact our law firm online. You can also reach our law firm by phone.
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With more than three decades in practice, attorney Dan A. Atkerson can help you with FMLA leave disputes.
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Limitations to Intermittent FMLA Leave
FMLA Leave and Reasonable Employer Requests
If you would like to exercise your right to intermittent leave, your employer may require medical certification. This means that your physician must provide written proof of your diagnosis and treatment needs. According to FMLA guidelines, you have 15 days to provide this certification after requesting leave.
Getting a Second Opinion
If there is reason to doubt the initial medical certification, your employer can require that you get a second opinion about your condition. In this case, your employer may specify the medical facility or physician you see but must also cover the cost. However, your employer cannot require certification for every doctor’s visit or period of treatment for which you need leave.
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Dan was the only lawyer who seemed to have time for me and knew that I had a case. He was personable, helpful, and most importantly he knew how to win without setting foot in a court room. TaQuanyia Stallworth
Learn More About FMLA Leave Contact the Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson
Using FMLA leave to reduce your work schedule gives you time to bond with a child, focus on your health, or meet the medical needs of a family member. If your employer denies your request for intermittent leave or otherwise fails to respect your rights under FMLA, the Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson can help. Mr. Atkerson has practiced employment law for nearly four decades, and you won't have to pay any legal fees unless your matter is successfully resolved. We serve Allen, Plano, Frisco, TX, and communities throughout the state. Contact our law offices online. You can also schedule a free consultation by phone.
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Work During Intermittent Leave Calculating FMLA Leave Used
While on intermittent leave, the hours an employee works cannot be counted against their FMLA entitlement. For example, if an employee normally works 40 hours a week and now works just 16 hours a week on reduced schedule leave, they have only used 24 hours of their FMLA leave time that week.
Reasons to Speak with an FMLA Lawyer
Employer Denies Intermittent Leave RequestAn employer may not deny your request for FMLA leave if you have a protected reason to take it.
Failure to Abide by an Employee's Reduced ScheduleIf you are working on a reduced schedule to meet your family or medical leave obligations, your employer must respect the changes to your work hours.
Retaliation for Taking Reduced Schedule LeaveAny unwarranted reduction in pay, changes in work duties, or disciplinary actions that stem from your reduced work schedule may be evidence of retaliation for taking intermittent leave.
Termination Over Intermittent LeaveBeing laid off while on intermittent leave may be a form of retaliation, or it could be a failure on your employer's part to note how your family or medical absences affect normal job performance.
Lack of Job Protection Returning from FMLA LeaveWhen returning from FMLA leave, an employee is entitled to the same or equivalent job they had prior to taking leave in terms of pay, benefits, shift hours, and location.
Clients Recommend Dan Atkerson
My case was pretty complex and Dan came to my rescue and assured me that we would win my case and we did. I appreciate his knowledge and abilities to help in this matter and would refer him to anyone needing help in Employment law. Latoya Savala