Employers Cannot Discourage You From Taking FMLA Leave

During a recent office visit, a potential client told us he suffered from an autoimmune disorder and had asked for FMLA leave to recover.  His boss told him not to fool with all those forms; he could just take personal time off and come back when he was better.  He returned a month later and was fired the moment he walked back into his office.

The employer told him, falsely, that he had no rights because he hadn’t taken protected medical leave. He’d only taken personal time off.  Our client sensed this was wrong, and reached out to us for advice. We’re glad he did.  He has a powerful winning claim.

The Family and Medical Leave Act authorizes employees to sue employers who discourage or interfere with their right to take FMLA leave.  Examples include the following:

  • Refusing to give employees FMLA paperwork
  • Instructing employees not to fill out FMLA forms, or discouraging them from doing so
  • Refusing to tell employees their rights under the FMLA
  • Refusing to tell employees how much FMLA leave they have available
  • Threatening employees with termination if they take FMLA leave
  • Telling employees they need to choose between taking FMLA leave and resigning
  • Pressuring employees to delay medical leave because of workloads

Employees can recover substantial financial compensation for violations like these.  And the employer’s motives are irrelevant. The employee wins by showing the employer committed one or more of these violations, regardless of the reason the employer had for doing so.

Think You Might Have a Claim?

If you’ve experienced this kind of abuse, call us for a free, confidential consultation.  We’ll answer your questions over the phone, outline the options you have, and discuss the potential recovery.  Reach us at (800) 663-7999, or send us a message on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/JimGarrityOnline.  There’s never a charge for a consultation, and if we accept your case, there’s no fee unless we recover for you.


Categories: Family & Medical Leave Act Of 1993, FMLA Leave, Retaliation

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