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In life, some times arise when you need to stay home to take care of medical-related issues, but you still need to maintain a job for when the problems resolve. The federal government enacted legislation in 1993 that aimed to help employees take care of pressing personal issues, yet still have a job upon your return. If you want to know more about how this can impact you should you need it, consider the following information.

Circumstances That May Warrant Leave

The Family and Medical Leave Act, or FMLA, was created to allow employees to take the personal time they needed and still maintain a position with their employer. FMLA addresses some specific situations where a person may qualify, including:

  • Caring for an ailing spouse, parent or child
  • The employee is sick or hurt
  • The birth or adoption of a child
  • Circumstance having to do with a spouse, parent or child’s military service including deployment

If you fall under one of these four categories, you may qualify for time off work under FMLA.

Eligibility for FMLA

While FMLA is a federal law, it may not apply to every employer or employee. There are specific requirements that must be fulfilled on both sides for FMLA to be an option. For the employer, the company size must be either a public entity or a private company that has at least 50 employees on staff for 20 workweeks a year.

For an employee to be able to take leave under FMLA, they must have been employed for at least 12 months at a qualified employer. These 12 months do not have to be concurrent, but rather any amount of work time at the same company that adds up to 12 months. The employee must have worked at least 1,250 hours in the year preceding the time of the FMLA request. This means part-time employees may be eligible for leave under the Act.

Basics of FMLA

FMLA allows a qualified worker to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave without losing their job. While the position may not be the same, it must be comparable, and the pay must not decrease. The employer must also carry medical benefits during the time the employee is out. The 12-week leave does not have to be taken for all at once. The time away cannot exceed 12 weeks within a year.

When needing leave, you may want to consult a workers’ comp lawyer in Milwaukee, WI for help if your employer does not seem to be cooperating. A professional can guide you through the appropriate process that suits your situation.



Thanks to Hickey & Turim, SC for their insight into workers compensation and the family and medical leave act.