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FMLA- MATERNITY LEAVE LOSE BENEFITS Florida

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  • FMLA- MATERNITY LEAVE LOSE BENEFITS Florida

    Hello,

    I applied for FMLA. IN my FMLA form, my doctor wrote 6 weeks. I had a c-section and it was my first baby. It was not easy at all. I don't feel I am ready yet so I decided to use my the entire 12 weeks. I thought it was alright. This was my first time to use FMLA. I read our company handbook and it states there 12 weeks max. I got a call from my manager saying that I need to provide a doctor's cert by Friday, stating that I am using my 12 weeks. So I rush to the hospital and have them give me a doctor's note, my doctor's note states "FMLA 12 weeks per patients request". I was gone 10 weeks. I left Oct 17 used up my 2 weeks vacation. Then My official FMLA starts Oct 27 ( I gave birth the 24th). I came back Jan 1.

    When I came back to work, I was offered a manager's position, I have another job at that time so I have to let go of the 2nd one and stick to this job.

    After getting evrything in place, I called our CORP HR and ask her if I can still apply for my health insurance, she said you lose your benefits because you VOLUNTARILY choose to consume the rest of your FMLA not because of the doctor's prescription. She will set me up for Health insurance starting Feb. 1. When I received my Insurance packet it says there my hiring date is Feb 1. Why? Is this normal? If they take away my vacation pay, is that right also?
    Does this mean I am starting all over again? I have worked for this company 3 years. NOt including when I am a sub contractor.

    WHat else can my employer do? What can i do?

    I badly needed advice about this FMLA I know nothing about.

    Thanks so much in advance.

  • #2
    My understanding is that this is not correct. The idea of the FMLA is that your job and health benefits are protected during the time you use the FMLA leave.

    See below:

    Leave Benefits

    Family & Medical Leave

    DOL Web Pages on This Topic
    Laws & Regulations on This Topic
    The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides certain employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year. It also requires that their group health benefits be maintained during the leave.

    FMLA is designed to help employees balance their work and family responsibilities by allowing them to take reasonable unpaid leave for certain family and medical reasons. It also seeks to accommodate the legitimate interests of employers and promote equal employment opportunity for men and women.

    FMLA applies to all public agencies, all public and private elementary and secondary schools, and companies with 50 or more employees. These employers must provide an eligible employee with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave each year for any of the following reasons:

    for the birth and care of the newborn child of an employee;
    for placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care;
    to care for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent) with a serious health condition; or
    to take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition.
    Employees are eligible for leave if they have worked for their employer at least 12 months, at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months, and work at a location where the company employs 50 or more employees within 75 miles. Whether an employee has worked the minimum 1,250 hours of service is determined according to FLSA principles for determining compensable hours or work.

    Time taken off work due to pregnancy complications can be counted against the 12 weeks of family and medical leave.

    A final rule effective on January 16, 2009, updates the FMLA regulations to implement new military family leave entitlements enacted under the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2008.

    Special rules apply to employees of local education agencies. The Department of Labor administers FMLA; however, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) administers FMLA for most federal employees.

    http://www.dol.gov/dol/topic/benefits-leave/fmla.htm
    Not everything in America is actionable in a court of law. Please remember that attorneys are in business for profit, and they get paid regardless of whether or not you win or lose.

    I offer my knowledge and experience at no charge, I admit that I am NOT infallible, I am wrong sometimes, hopefully another responder will correct me if that is the case with the answer above, regardless, it is your responsibility to verify any and all information provided.

    Comment


    • #3
      I would remind that HR person that FMLA also allows for baby bonding time up to the 12 weeks total job and benefits protection. They can't count the time after the medical release through the end of the 12 week allotment against you for benefits, pay or any other reason. That is still protected time.

      My only other thought is that the employer can run Vacation time (which is truly just wage payment) concurrently with FMLA so between the two, were you out more than 12 weeks combined? It doesn't sound like it but I just wanted to clarify.

      Comment


      • #4
        It seems they were out 10-17 until 1-1 but it doesn't hurt to have OP clarify just to be sure.
        Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

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        Comment


        • #5
          Did you have health insurance when you went out on FMLA? Or are you just now applying for health insurance?

          Generally, you only have 30 days from the date of the family status change (in your case, the birth) to enroll or change health insurance. It sounds like you were well outside that time frame. For whatever reason (maybe a new plan year?), your employer is allowing you to enroll in coverage as of Feb 1.

          Could you have misunderstood what the HR person was telling you?

          As far as the Feb 1 date on your forms, that may be common practice for your company to list the first day of insured coverage as your hire date for ease of entering information into their system. It may have nothing to do with your vacation time so I wouldn't panic over that yet. Just ask your HR dept why your hire date is listed as Feb 1. It could also have been a mistake by someone who put in your insurance start date instead of your actual hire date.

          Comment

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