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More work, less pay Virginia

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  • More work, less pay Virginia

    I took the maximum leave allowed by FMLA. I received my 6 week short term disability and had accrued just two weeks of vacation pay. My disability package covered 2 weeks @ 60% of my pay; something is better than nothing I guess. I ended up working from home and in the office part time after 6 weeks because my boss did not hire anyone to cover my job, nor were any of my co-workers asked to help cover my work load. Now I am back to work and covering my work, my backlog, and an employee who is out on FMLA and I am not receiving my full salary. I was hired to perform a job for a certain amount of money, I understand I missed approx. 2 months of work, but I was NOT paid for most of the time missed and now I am doing more work for less money.

    I have been in this salary position for 4 years and worked for the company for 7 years. Since I have worked there I am the only female to have a baby and our company does not have a written policy for ANYTHING, my boss asked me what my plans for leave were and we went over my paid time off and the disability plan benefits. I was told that at least half of my job responsibilities would be covered and I would say 10% was covered; and that is extremely generous.

    Do I have any legal standing for obtaining my FULL salary since I am being required to perform my entire job, cover someone's elses job and neglect my own AGAIN, and essentially losing 12% of my annual salary? I feel like I am being punished for having a baby and there is nothing I can do.

    Any advice would be helpful. Right now, quitting without gainful employment is not an option since I am supporting the household and providing insurance. I'm between a rock and a hard place.

  • #2
    What has happened to other employees who were out on extended medical leave for non-maternity situations? There's a reason I'm asking.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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    • #3
      There has not been consistency in this company since I have worked there...

      Several incidents have occured, this one is going on now. A male employee broke his ankle and is out on disability for 4 months. Same program, except my boss compensated him his FULL SALARY until disability kicked in.

      I work in the office as an accountant, this gentlemen above is a foreman and works construction job sites. He will not be required to do any work while he is out and obviously cannot make up the work when he returns.

      I KNOW my employer breaks employment law. I asked him last week to compensate my salary fully for the year considering my work load has not decreased, yet increased. He said he would get back to me today and then today told me he wasn't prepared to discuss a monetary figure. I really don't want to pull a discrimination card, it really isn't my thing, but at this point, I am not being treated fairly because of the maternity leave.

      Comment


      • #4
        Did he break his ankle at work? How long has he worked there?

        Comment


        • #5
          The way I read your post you are wanting to have your normal annual salary for the year because of the increased workload upon your return from leave. If your employer is paying you the same salary per pay period as before your leave there is no legal obligation for the employer to take steps to adjust your current per pay period salary to meet what your normal annual salary is. If you are non-exempt overtime could come into play but I am assuming you are exempt. You could approach your employer for a raise if this workload is permanent pointing out the additional workload/responsibilites you have taken on; if short term perhaps some sort of bonus. With regards to working during your FMLA, were you properly compensated for your work and the time worked not counted towards your leave time? On your suggestion of a possible discrimination claim there is not enough evidence from what you have posted to support the claim. As CBG hit upon it is important to look at how others on FMLA for non-pregnancy issues are treated. In regards to the male who broke his ankle; there could be a number of explanations on why he received his full salary until disability kicked in.
          Last edited by Blessed123; 10-31-2011, 08:56 AM.

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          • #6
            There is no requirement under FMLA that your employer have your work caught up before you return. Unfortunately, when most of us take leave from work, we come back to a backlog. That isn't illegal. If it were, there isn't an employer out there that would not be in violation. While you were off work you received disability pay at 60% which is pretty standard. Your employer is not required to supplement that or even off it in the first place. Asking for your full salary for the year based on work load when you returned is not reasonable. As long as they have not reduced your salary now that you have returned because you took leave, it is not illegal.

            Clearly the coworker you are comparing yourself to is in a totally different situation as he can not do his work from elsewhere and can not "make it up" when he returns.
            I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

            Comment


            • #7
              Agree with Elle. Based on your posts, I don't see that your employer has
              done anything illegal.
              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

              Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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              • #8
                I guess I am thinking that without a written policy on leave, the employer would be required to treat all cases similarly. If he paid the guy with a broken ankle full salary until disability kicked in, why wouldn't he have to do the same for me? The ankle was broken in a recreational game of softball and the guy's PTO for the year had been used up prior to the accident.

                Either way, it doesn't really matter much. My hands are tied, I have a baby now to think about. I appreciate your input.

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                • #9
                  You don't have to treat every employee the same or equally. You just can not use a legally protected characteristic as the reason for treating them differently. It is not uncommon to have different rules based on exempt vs. nonexempt, administrative vs. management or production, longevity, accrued leave to use vs. no leave available, WC claim vs. unrelated, length of absence (it is very possible that 4 months falls into LTD and not STD), different benefit package selected, etc.

                  In any case, your employer is totally within their rights to dock your salary for the year based on missing 2 months. FMLA allows this even if you are an exempt employee. Expecting to be off for 2 months for any reason and collect your full annual salary is just not a reaslistic expectation.
                  I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

                  Comment

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