Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Need Major help on Signing Fishy Leave of Absence letter

Collapse
This topic is closed.
X
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Need Major help on Signing Fishy Leave of Absence letter

    Hi,

    I was hoping if someone can help me with some options and possibilities here.

    Here's my situation

    I am planning to take a leave of absence to finish up some emergency family issues out of the country (outside US). My company's current policy only states that the maximum number of days allowed for a leave of absence is at 30 days (including weekend), I was, however able to combine it with my acrued vacation. I was told that I have to sign an agreement letter before my leave.

    My intention is to make a trip out of the country and finish whatever I have to do and come back within the 30 days period. However, when I review the letter sent from HR there's a sentence that mentions :

    "If you cannot return by this date then we will consider your position vacant and accept your resignation. We are not able to extend your personal leave request beyond the time you have asked for."

    I am a little uncomfortable with the "accept your resignation" statement here, because (I just want to cover all the bases) there's always a possibility that I might go beyond that 30 days because of some unforeseen circumstances (i.e. sudden illness, trip cancellation, natural disaster, terrorist attacks, problems with paperwork, etc). Our HR insist that it is the company's policy.

    What I am saying is ... I intend to make every effort possible to come back and work on the designated date but "by no all means" I am resigning or intend to resign at all. I also think that in case, I really do come back late by involuntary reasons then I will not get any unemployement benefit if I were to sign this letter.

    So my questions :

    1) What happen if I don't sign the letter ?
    2) Can I get any unemployment benefit if I sign or not sign this letter ?
    3) What statement do I need from them to show NY Unemployment office later that I was forced to resign, it wasn't my intention to resign ?
    4) Any other advice to cover the bases when this type of letter agreement would be appreciated.


    Thank you

    Summer 2009
    Last edited by Summer2009; 08-18-2009, 02:01 PM.

  • cbg
    replied
    You're still not getting it entirely.

    Even if the HR office wrote the letter to say in so many words that it was their policy to consider it a resignation, it wouldn't help you if the state decides to agree with them. It is within your control to come back within 30 days or not within 30 days. Even with a signed, notarized statement, "It is our policy to consider it a resignation if you do not return within 30 days", if you return on day 31 you've just resigned. And even if you don't sign it, all they have to do is show that you were aware of the policy and that's the ball game.

    I'm not saying you definitely will be declined for UI because I don't know - I don't work for the PA UI office. What I can tell you is that in my experience, if you know that your job is in jeopardy if you do x and you do x (in this case, x is returning from leave after more than 30 days), no matter what state you're in your chances of UI go way, way down.

    The ONLY way you can guarantee your job is to return within the time allotted. This is not protected leave under any Federal or state law.

    Leave a comment:


  • Summer2009
    replied
    I see, thanks ... so It looks like I have no choice other than maybe trying to ask my HR to rework the wording of that letter of absence agreement, they could probably make it sound more like it is their policy to consider it a resignation.

    Whether I am signing or not, I guess it doesn't help in my (potentially) uphill battle with the UI office.

    Leave a comment:


  • cbg
    replied
    1.) Whether you intend to resign or not, failing to come back from leave on time can be construed as a resignation. That is why they are making it so clear that you have been approved for 30 days and 30 days only.

    2.) Of course they can terminate you. And since they have made it absolutely clear that you are approved for 30 days and 30 days only, the state may or may not approve your UI. For the record, I have had employees declined for UI without my even contesting it because I put it in writing how much time they were approved for and they exceeded it. That was not in your state so your mileage may vary but it's by no means certain that you'll qualify for UI if you return after more than 30 days regardless of whether you sign or not.

    3.) See #2

    4.) No, what I am saying is that you will not be eligible for UI for the time you're out of the country - I couldn't tell if you were asking that or not. You may or may not be eligible for UI for the time after you return if your employment ends.

    Leave a comment:


  • Summer2009
    replied
    Originally posted by cbg View Post
    Okay, thanks.

    1) What happen if I don't sign the letter ? I have no way of knowing what your employer will do but either refusal of the leave or termination are both on the table.
    2) Can I get any unemployment benefit if I sign or not sign this letter ? You will not be eligible for UI while you are out of the country on family business. Signing or not signing the letter will not make a difference one way or the other once you return IF you are terminated. You've been told how much time you've been granted and refusing to sign the letter is not going to change that.
    3) What statement do I need from them to show NY Unemployment office later that I was forced to resign, it wasn't my intention to resign ? If you are granted 30 days absence with the understanding that 30 days is the maximum, and you do not return within 30 days, you're going to have an uphill battle showing that this was not a resignation regardless of what statements you have.
    4) Any other advice to cover the bases when this type of letter agreement would be appreciated. The fact of the matter is that you are not entitled by law to the leave. If the employer is willing to grant you 30 days of leave, that's 30 days more than you have a right under the law to. I don't see anything at all "fishy" about this letter - it is the employer telling you plainly what they are willing to provide and what the consequences are of extending the leave.
    Thank you again, I have some follow up questions, if you can shed some lights.

    1) What I sensed as "fishy" is the fact that they want me to sign a letter stating that it is "my resignation" (voluntarily) while I never intend to resign at all. Actually they promised earlier that I can work from out of the country but later revoked that promise and offer a 30 day leave of absense instead with this 30 days restriction.

    2) If I don't sign the letter, then I don't think they can terminate me at all, as they would show that it is my company that terminates, (I have a feeling they want to avoide claims of unemployment here by making it sound like I am the one who wants to resign). Am I correct on this ?

    3) I understand perfectly your logic for my question #3 above, that's why I am trying to prepare in case th inevitable happens. Is it good enough evidence to show the Umployment office all of my email correspondence I've had with my HR and management that it is "the company" who terminates if I don't come back because of let's say my passport is being held longer than usual in the foreign country while processing some legal documents (potentially could happen).

    4) Following to your answer for my question #2 above, I will come back obviously, it's just that it may go over the 30 days threshold and by that time my employer would probably have decided to terminate my job (but the letter, if I sign it, it says I chose to resign), so are you saying that I cannot claim that in the employment office because I wasn't in the country for the last 30 days ?
    Last edited by Summer2009; 08-18-2009, 02:33 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • cbg
    replied
    Okay, thanks.

    1) What happen if I don't sign the letter ? I have no way of knowing what your employer will do but either refusal of the leave or termination are both on the table.
    2) Can I get any unemployment benefit if I sign or not sign this letter ? You will not be eligible for UI while you are out of the country on family business. Signing or not signing the letter will not make a difference one way or the other once you return IF you are terminated. You've been told how much time you've been granted and refusing to sign the letter is not going to change that.
    3) What statement do I need from them to show NY Unemployment office later that I was forced to resign, it wasn't my intention to resign ? If you are granted 30 days absence with the understanding that 30 days is the maximum, and you do not return within 30 days, you're going to have an uphill battle showing that this was not a resignation regardless of what statements you have.
    4) Any other advice to cover the bases when this type of letter agreement would be appreciated. The fact of the matter is that you are not entitled by law to the leave. If the employer is willing to grant you 30 days of leave, that's 30 days more than you have a right under the law to. I don't see anything at all "fishy" about this letter - it is the employer telling you plainly what they are willing to provide and what the consequences are of extending the leave.

    Leave a comment:


  • Summer2009
    replied
    Originally posted by cbg View Post
    Before I answer your questions, I have one of my own.

    Does the family situation involve a medical issue and if so, what family member is involved?
    Thank you for your prompt reply, the situation is more complex.

    Basically my father is getting old, got sick a lot the last few years, and we need to transfer some assets, possessions legally under my names. The whole process in the country I am going to could potentially take more than 30 days.
    Last edited by Summer2009; 08-18-2009, 02:21 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • cbg
    replied
    Before I answer your questions, I have one of my own.

    Does the family situation involve a medical issue and if so, what family member is involved?

    Leave a comment:

Working...
X